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Scunthorpe Preview

By: Richard Hubbert
Date: 22/04/2005

A full house is expected at Blundell Park on Saturday, to see if the Mariners can secure their first derby win of the season against promotion chasing rivals, Scunthorpe United.

Home > 2004-2005 Season > Previews > Scunthorpe (h)

The Opposition

Well, unfortunately most Town fans probably know the story of Scunthorpe's season too well. While the Mariners have been stuck in mid-table for most of the year, the Iron (who finished 22nd last year) have been enjoying an excellent season, being in the top three for virtually all of it. Managed of course by ex-Mariner player/boss Brian Laws, the Iron currently lie in 3rd place in League Two, but just two points from top team Southend, meaning there is still all to play for.

Their Squad
Scunthorpe's success this year is partly built on their toughness at the back through the experienced Andy Crosby and the talented Andy Butler who have been the Iron's regular defensive pairing. Richard Hinds and Stev Angus has proved successful loan signings by Laws, from Hull and Cambridge respectively. In midfield, Wayne Cordon was brought in from Mansfield a few months ago and provides ample experience at this level. Ex-Mariner Ian Baraclough recently signed a new one year deal in response to some solid performances in the engine room this season. In attack, Steve Torpey (left) has netted 11 goals this season, while his regular strike partner Paul Hayes has grabbed 18.

Key Player
Peter Beagrie (left). The evergreen 39-year-old is still going strong and has played an important part in Scunthorpe's success this season. A tricky winger, Beagrie will need to be kept quiet especially in light of his disparaging comments about Town earlier in the season.

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  • The Mariners have quite a few injury problems to contend with as they prepare for the visit of the Iron. Stacy Coldicott and Martin Gritton both had to be withdrawn during the draw with Notts County last week and have barely trained all week, although Gritton did resume training on Thursday leaving Russell Slade hopeful that the former Torquay man could start. Coldicott, meanwhile is struggling with a calf problem and is more doubtful. Thomas Pinault could replace him.

  • Furthermore, defender Terrell Forbes has come down with a virus in the last few days. This means that we could see a return for Ronnie Bull at left wing back, with Simon Ramsden being shifted to his preferred centre back role, as Slade sticks with his 3-5-2 formation. However, like with Gritton, Slade should play.

  • Graham Hockless will return to the bench after missing the last few games through injury. David Soames is still thought to be absent after a family bereavement.
  • Former Leeds youngster Andy Keogh will miss the game through international duty with Republic of Ireland under-19s.

  • On-loan defender Stev Angus will return to the squad after being ineligible to face his parent club, Cambridge, last weekend.

  • Richard Kell took a bang on the heel last weekend and has been to see a specialist this week about it, but Brian Laws is hoping that the former Middlesbrough man will start. If not, Cleveland Taylor will replace him with Matt Sparrow reverting to the wing.
  • Probable Teams


    1Anthony Williams
    2John McDermott
    6Terrell Forbes
    28Justin Whittle
    18Rob Jones
    9Simon Ramsden
    16Jason Crowe
    17Thomas Pinault
    15Terry Fleming
    10Andy Parkinson
    26Martin Gritton
    23Paul Musselwhite
    6Cliff Bryne
    20Richard Hinds
    4 Andy Crosby
    12Lee Ridley
    7Matthew Sparrow
    14Peter Beagrie
    19Richard Kell
    11Ian Baraclough
    9 Paul Hayes
    10Steve Torpey



    5Tony Crane
    12Graham Hockless
    14Michael Reddy
    30Nick Heggarty
    25Glen Downey
    29Michael Rankine
    15Cleveland Taylor
    5 Wayne Corden
    28Stev Angus
    18Andy Butler

    Head to Head

    The record books show that the Mariners have enjoyed the better of meetings between the two sides, since their first meeting back in 1951. It is at Blundell Park where Town have faired the better, losing just once against the Iron in the last 12 games - a 1-0 defeat in 1968.

    P 50 W 24 D 15 L 11 F 75 A 47

    Scunthorpe Head-to-Head (7th on The Opposition Ladder)


  • In the manager stakes, Town have most famously shared two bosses. One of them is of course Brian Laws, the current United manager who was in charge of Town for 99 games between 1994 and 1997.

  • Ron Ashman, meanwhile, had two spells in charge of the Iron between 1967 and 1973, with a two year stay at Blundell Park in between before returning to the Old Showground in 1976 for five more years as the United manager.

  • Current Mariners' physio Dave Moore, of course had a two-year stay at Scunthorpe manager between 1994 and 1996. In his first season, the Iron missed out on the play offs by goal difference and the next season they finished 12th, before his departure and appointment of Mick Buxton.

  • Jamie Forrester appeared for both clubs and can probably look back on his stay at Glanford Park as his most successful. 43 goals in 119 starts preceded spells at FC Utrecht in Holland, Walsall, Northampton, Hull and now, Bristol Rovers.

  • Midfielder Craig Shakespeare (left) made 4 appearances for the Iron in 1997 and 1998 towards the end of his career. Shakespeare joined the Mariners in 1993 from WBA for £115,000. He made just under 100 appearances for Town playing under Alan Buckley, Brian Laws and Kenny Swain.

  • Strikers Rob Taylor and Mike Jeffrey have recently had spells with both teams. Jeffrey spent some time on loan with Scunthorpe at the end of his Town career, whilst Taylor, who had three spells with the Mariners, finished his professional career with the Iron at the end of the 2002/2003 season.

  • Last Meeting

    Not a game that will live long in Town fans' memories. Town fell to a 2-0 defeat back in November at Glanford Park, in a lacklustre Mariners display. On loan forward Jon Daly was sent off in the first half but Paul Hayes had struck before then to put the Iron in the lead and he wrapped things up with a second on 69 minutes.

    Grimsby Team: WWilliams, Whittle, Gordon, Jones, McDermott (Cramb, 67), Fleming, Coldicott (Pinault, 67), Crowe, Parkinson, Daly, Sestanovich (Reddy, 79)
    Subs: (not used) Bull, Young

    Scunthorpe Team: Musselwhite, Byrne, Butler, Crosby, Ridley, Sparrow (Taylor, 68), Kell, Baraclough, Beagrie, Torpey, Hayes (Rankine, 88)
    Subs: (not used) Evans, Sharp, Jackson

    Attendance: 8,054    Report


    Mmmm. A victory for Town would be sweet, oh so sweet. I'm going to be optimistic and go for a 2-1 Town win. Please!


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