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Next Up: York Street
Next Up: York Street

Boston Preview

By: Richard Hubbert
Date: 23/09/2005

AFTER an epic night at Blundell Park on Tuesday, it's back to the bread and butter of league football this weekend, with the Mariners making the short trip to Boston in search of another three points.

Home > 2005-2006 Season > Previews > Boston (a)

Tuesday night's fantastic win over Tottenham at Blundell Park is still being talked about, but another big game takes place on Saturday, with a local derby at Boston United. Boston have struggled so far this season, sitting in 20th place and winning just one league game. However, with the likes of Noel Whelan, Julian Joachim and Jason Lee in the Pilgrims ranks, they have potential to cause real problems for the Mariners.

The Opposition

The York Street side entered the league for the first time in 2002. Steve Evans (left) was the man who took them there, but due to a suspension from the FA for financial irregularities the Scotsman didn't get a chance to manage the club until March 2004 when he took over from Neil Thompson. Last year was his first full season and they finished a disappointing 16th, after finishing 11th the previous campaign. Changes have been made in the summer but after a sluggish start to this season, whispers of doubt have been circling around York Street over the future of manager Steve Evans.

Their Squad
Ex-Chesterfield keeper Nathan Abbey is in goal for the Pilgrims. The 27-year-old had a superb game in the same fixture at Blundell Park last August. In front of him he has ex Lincoln defender Ben Futcher who has struggled to make an impression at the club since his shock summer move. Former Gainsborough defender Paul Ellender is a regular fixture in the heart of the defence for the Pilgrims along with ex-Hull man Mark Greaves. In midfield they have the pace of Danny Thomas who can cause problems for full backs, while Ian Ross is on loan from Sheffield United and has impressed since he joined at the end of August. In attack, the Pilgrims have four very experienced forwards in the shape of ex-Town loanee Jason Lee, former Leicester attacker Lawrie Dudfield, Julian Joachim (left) and 30-year-old Noel Whelan.

Key Player
David Noble (left). Tricky midfielder who began his career at Arsenal before spells at Watford and West Ham. The 23 year old is capable of creating chances for the array of Boston forwards if given time and space.

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Currently 20th in League Two.

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Team News



  • Russell Slade will have to check on the fitness of striker Gary Jones and midfielder Andy Parkinson.

  • Parkinson was 50/50 for the Tottenham game after suffering from shin splints in recent weeks and is still not 100% fit. Terry Barwick stands by to replace him if he is not declared fit.

  • Jones meanwhile, went off injured at half time in the game against Spurs and is rated doubtful for the derby clash. Martin Gritton will come into the starting eleven if the ex-Tranmere man doesn't make it.

  • Elsewhere, the Mariners will remain unchanged.
  • Boston manager Steve Evans has a selection headache to contend with this weekend. The Pilgrims played in a midweek friendly at Rushden and Diamonds and several players impressed.

  • Former Town defender Dean Gordon has been on trial at the club in the last few weeks and looks to have done enough to earn a contract, and could sign one in time to be in the Boston squad.

  • Lee Canoville and Ben Futcher both scored in the friendly and did well, so will both be looking for a place in the Pilgrims side.

  • Simon Rusk played 30 minutes in that game after spending the last month on the sidelines through injury. However, it is unlikely he will be included in the squad.

  • One man who will be hopeful of a start is Lawrie Dudfield who came on and netted the equaliser at Bury last weekend and had an excellent game at Rushden in the week. Evans will have to decide between him and Noel Whelan.
  • Probable Teams


    1Steve Mildenhall
    2John McDermott
    20Gary Croft
    4Rob Jones
    6Justin Whittle
    15Gary Cohen
    7JPK Kalala
    8Paul Bolland
    11Andy Parkinson
    19Gary Jones
    9Michael Reddy
    1Nathan Abbey
    4Paul Ellender
    6Alan White
    15Mark Greaves
    3Austin McCann
    7Brad Maylett
    8David Noble
    22Ian Ross
    23Lawrie Dudfield
    19Julian Joachim
    9Jason Lee



    18Ciaran Toner
    4Simon Ramsden
    3Tom Newey
    14Terry Barwick
    10Martin Gritton
    5Ben Futcher
    18Noel Whelan
    16Danny Thomas
    26Chris Wright (GK)
    17Stewart Talbot

    Head to Head

    At the moment, the head to head record between the two sides is a bit of a stalemate. Last season was the first time we met the Pilgrims in the league, and after two 1-1 draws neither side has secured a win in this fixture.

    P 2 W 0 D 2 L 0 F 2 A

    Boston Head-to-Head (not on The Opposition Ladder)


    Ben Chapman (left). Chapman started his career with the Mariners and made 19 starts for the club, mostly coming at left back. Despite standing at only 5 foot 7, Chapman had a great spring on him, which saw him out-jump many people taller than him (including England striker Peter Crouch when he was at Portsmouth!) He then moved to Boston and was their captain for a time, making over 70 appearances for the York Street Side. When Steve Evans returned to the club, he decided against keeping Chapman and released him. He now plays his trade for Northwich Victoria along with Town legend Peter Handyside.

    Last Meeting

    The last time the two sides met was in March earlier this year, with both sides hovering in mid table and with relatively little to play for. Boston took the lead within a minute thanks for former Mariners forward Daryl Clare, who has since been sold to Conference club Crawley Town. The Mariners had an improved second half and grabbed an equaliser through on loan Brentford striker Matt Harrold who netted after 69 minutes.

    Grimsby Team: Williams, McDermott, Whittle, Forbes, Bull, Pinault, Fleming (Reddy, 61), Coldicott, Gritton, Parkinson, Harrold
    Subs (not used): Rob Jones, Downey, Hockless, Soames,

    Boston Team: Abbey, West, Ellender, White, McCann, Rusk (Thompson, 80), Noble, Holland, Thomas, Clare (Staff, 80), Pitt (Melton, 84)
    Subs: (not used) Roma,O'Donnell,

    Attendance: 3941    Report


    Well. Surely Town's run is going to end somewhere? But where? Not Boston! Another narrow win, but three points for the Mariners nonetheless.


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