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Whittle: Doubt
Whittle: Doubt

Wrexham Preview

By: Richard Hubbert
Date: 30/12/2005

TOWN go into their third game in six days on New Year's Eve when they travel to Wrexham on the back of two consecutive victories over Bury and Lincoln City.

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


The Opposition

Overview
After an indifferent start to the season, Wrexham have risen into the play off picture in recent months following some impressive results, including a Boxing Day win over Rochdale. Ex-West Brom manager Dennis Smith (left) has had to endure financial difficulties over the past few seasons - last season they were deducted ten points for entering administration. This meant that they were relegated but they did manage to win the LDV Vans Trophy and have managed to maintain a solid squad capable of a straight return to League One. Wrexham have the strongest home form in the division, winning 8 of their 12 games. With the Mariners having the best away record in the division it should make it an interesting fixture.

Their Squad
In goal is a former target of Russell Slade - Michael Ingham - who joined the Dragons in the summer on a free transfer from Sunderland after having a previous loan spell at the Racecourse Ground. Trinidad and Tobago defender Dennis Lawrence has been playing for the Welsh side since 2001 and is a rock at the heart of their defence. In the summer, he could well be lining up for Trinidad against England in the World Cup. Ex-Hull player Andy Holt plays either at left back, left wing back or left midfield and is a fans' favourite - picking up every Supporters Club Player of the Year Award last term. Darren Ferguson (left), the son of Sir Alex Ferguson is the lynchpin of the Dragons midfield and netted a cracking goal against Rochdale on Boxing Day to help his side to victory. Robbie Foy is an exciting young forward on loan from Liverpool who has netted three times this season.

Key Player
Jon Walters. Ex Hull City forward who joined on a free transfer from the KC Stadium this summer. Walters is an intelligent forward who probably doesn't score as many goals as he should - he has just 5 this season despite 23 league starts. Despite this, Town will want to keep a close eye on him.

Recent Form

TownWrexham
WLincoln(h)3-0
WBury(a)2-1
LBristol R(h)0-1
WRochdale(h)4-1
WOxford(a)3-2
Currently 2nd in League Two.
WRochdale(h)0-0
LCarlisle(a)1-0
DNotts C(h)3-1
WMansfield(h)2-2
DBoston(a)1-1
Currently 7th in League Two.

Top Scorers

TownWrexham
Gary Jones7
Michael Reddy7
Jones, M9
McEvilly7

Team News

TownWrexham

  • A big question mark hangs over the fitness of Captain Justin Whittle after he suffered a groin strain in the win over Lincoln on Wednesday. This means that Simon Ramsden is on standby to replace the ex-Hull defender, but Russell Slade will wait until the last minute to make a decision.

  • Michael Reddy has got over his bout of 'flu so will be able to start in attack once again. Similarly Martin Gritton will hope to recover from a similar bug to claim his place on the bench. John McDermott remains on the sidelines with his ankle injury but will hope to return in the next few weeks.
  • Dennis Smith will choose from the same squad that beat Rochdale on Boxing Day. Alex Smith has returned to training but will not feature after suffering from a virus over Christmas.

  • The only change may come in attack. Striker Robbie Foy has a battle to keep his place in the starting eleven. He was replaced at half time on Boxing Day by Dean Bennett who made an immediate impact and may be preferred.

  • Ex-Town defender Paul Warhurst is unlikely to feature. The 36-year-old's short term contract runs out soon and he has not started a game since the end of October.
  • Probable Teams

    TownWrexham
    1Steve Mildenhall
    20Gary Croft
    3Tom Newey
    12Rob Jones
    4Simon Ramsden
    15Gary Cohen
    18Ciaran Toner
    8Paul Bolland
    11Andy Parkinson
    19Gary Jones
    9Michael Reddy
    1Michael Ingham
    4David Bayliss
    8Danny Williams
    6Dennis Lawrence
    15Lee Roche
    16Matt Crowell
    10Darren Ferguson
    17Mark Jones
    7Andy Holt
    9Jon Walters
    12Dean Bennett

    Subs

    TownWrexham
    10Martin Gritton
    17Glen Downey
    23Nick Heggarty
    7JPK Kalala
    25Paul Ashton
    2Jim Whitley
    13Michael Jones
    14Robbie Foy
    18Shaun Pejic
    25Mike Williams

    Head to Head

    Town don't have the greatest of records against the Dragons - having lost twenty games against them and recording only three wins in their last ten meetings. The Mariners have also won six times in their twenty four visits to Wrexham.

    P 49 W 18 D 11 L 20 F 58 A 64

    Wrexham Head-to-Head (53rd on The Opposition Ladder)

    Last Meeting

    The last time Town met Wrexham it was Nicky Law's first game in charge of the Mariners, back in March 2004. Not many players will remember that game - Tony Crane is the only player still at the club who played in that game. Wrexham ran out comfortable 3-0 winners with all their goals coming in the space of three minutes. Matty Crowell netted first before striker Chris Armstrong netted a brace to secure all three points for the Welshmen.

    Grimsby Team: Pettinger, Edwards, Crane, Armstrong (Young, 25), Barnard ,Campbell, Daws, Hamilton, Jevons, Thorpe (Hockless, 80), Mansaram (Soames ,58)
    Subs (not used): Parker,Bolder

    Wrexham Team: Dibble, Pejic, Morgan, Lawrence, Edwards, Whitley, Ferguson ,Crowell (Barrett, 84), Edwards, Armstrong, Llewellyn (Sam, 75)
    Subs: (not used) Whitfield,Holmes,Mark Jones

    Attendance: 3.127    Report

    Prediction

    A rare 0-0 draw for the Mariners

    Recent Predictions

    GamePredictionScorePoints
    Lincoln1-03-01
    Bury1-02-11
    Bristol R1-00-10
    Rochdale3-24-11
    Oxford1-13-20
    Wycombe1-21-31
    Macclesfield1-13-10
    Bristol R2-01-21
    Northampton1-10-01
    Morecambe1-01-10
    Reader's POMs

    Directions

    Click on the link for directions to Racecourse Ground (left).




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