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Chester Preview

By: Richard Hubbert
Date: 06/09/2005

Town travel to the Saunders Honda Stadium on Tuesday evening to face third place Chester City, with the Mariners looking to bounce back from their 3-1 home defeat to Stockport on Friday.

Away > 2005-2006 Season > Previews > Chester (a)

Russell Slade will be expecting a distinct improvement from the second half performance at Blundell Park on Friday night, where Town pressed the self destruct button and surrendered a one-goal lead to lose 3-1 to Stockport. The former Notts County manager will have to decide whether to stick with the 4-4-1-1 formation which has worked well in recent weeks, or revert back to his preferred 3-5-2 formation.

Opposition Overview
Chester were glad to get the 2004/2005 season behind them, after a campaign full of drama. After winning the Conference in the 2003/2004 season, hopes were high at the beginning of last season, but just days before the start of the season manager Mark Wright departed the club. Ian Rush was then drafted in and steadied the ship, until later in the season when results were hard to come by, which saw City flirt with relegation at the foot of the table. Rush eventually departed before the season's end and the Blues finished in 20th place. In the summer, ex Mansfield manager Keith Curle (left)took over the reigns and has made an impressive start to his Chester career, with notable wins at Peterborough, Torquay and a home win against Mansfield on Friday night.

Their Squad
Keith Curle has been busy in the transfer market over the summer, bringing in several new faces. DAVID ARTELL (left) has come in and helped shore up their defence after arriving from Mansfield. Following Artell from Curle's former club is veteran midfielder TOM CURTIS and Maltese defender LUKE DIMECH. CHRIS MACKENZIE continues between the sticks for City, with ex Town trialist WAYNE BROWN now on loan at Hereford United. Former Wolves forward MICHAEL BRANCH remains with the club and will be looking to add to the goal he netted against in the corresponding fixture last season.

Recent Form

WDerby (LC)(a)1-0
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Currently 11th in League Two.
Currently 3rd in League Two.

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Gary Jones2
Rob Jones1

Team News


  • Russell Slade could be tempted to make changes after the second half capitulation at home to Stockport on Tuesday. He will have to decide whether the persevere with the 4-4-1-1 formation which yielded the Mariners three successive wins before Friday, or revert to 3-5-2. §

  • He will be forced to make at least one change, with CALVIN ANDREW looking certain to go back to Luton after his month's loan expired. He could be replaced by TOM NEWEY, with ANDY PARKINSON switching to the right wing. §

  • GARY COHEN could return to the squad after being on the sidelines since the 1-0 win at Derby. He has been nursing a damaged hamstring.
  • §

  • Manager Keith Curle is expected to name an unchanged lineup after the 3-1 over Mansfield on Friday. ABDUL EL-KHOLTI and former Middlesbrough trainee CRAIG DOVE remain sidelined with knee injuries. §

  • Defender SEAN HESSEY is still struggling with a groin injury and is unlikely to make the squad. Defender DAVID ARTELL will remain in the starting eleven after recovering from stitches to his head.
  • Probable Teams

    1Steve Mildenhall
    2John McDermott
    3Gary Croft
    4Rob Jones
    6Justin Whittle
    15Andy Parkinson
    7JPK Kalala
    8Paul Bolland
    11Tom Newey
    19Gary Jones
    9Michael Reddy
    1 Chris MacKenzie
    15 David Artell
    22 Scott McNiven
    6 Luke Dimech
    3 Carl Reagan
    7 Stewart Drummond
    11 Tommy Curtis
    14 Ben Davies
    10 Ryan Lowe
    8 Michael Branch
    9 Gregg Blundell


    4Simon Ramsden
    5Tony Crane
    15Gary Cohen
    14Terry Barwick
    10Martin Gritton
    16 Leo Bertos
    30 Justin Walker
    23 Marcus Richardson
    5 Phil Bolland
    2 Stephen Bolland

    Head to Head Since our first meeting in 1951, the Mariners have generally enjoyed the better of the clashes against the Cheshire side. Interestingly, whenever Chester have been the home side there has never been a goalless draw, therefore if this trend continues, there should be some goals in Tuesday's encounter.

    P 31 W 16 D 5 L 10 F 46 A 37

    Last Match

    The Mariners got the better of Chester during their last meeting in February at Blundell Park. The game had 0-0 written all over it, with neither team managing to produce much in the way of chances, until Martin Gritton grabbed the winning goal, nine minutes before the end.

    Grimsby: Williams ,Whittle ,Ramsden ,Forbes ,Crowe (Parkinson ,59 ) ,Fleming ,Coldicott ,Bull ,Hockless (Pinault ,60 ) ,Gritton ,Reddy

    Subs not used: Crane, Downey, Robert Jones,

    Chester: Brown ,Davies ,Elokobi ,Hope ,Hessey ,Drummond ,Carden ,Brown ,Sestanovich ,Foy ,O'Neill (Booth ,79 )

    Subs not used: MacKenzie, Atieno, Vaughan, Walsh,

    Attendance: 3144


    Chester are riding high in the division at the moment, while the Mariners will be keen to bury the memory of Friday night. Seeing as Town are undefeated away from home this year, I'll go for a draw.


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