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Rizzo: Debut
Rizzo: Debut

Preview: Grimsby v Chester

By: Kevin Dolan
Date: 08/01/2007

GRIMSBY Town welcome Chester to Blundell Park looking to put a disappointing run of results behind them and complete their first double of the season.

Home > 2006-2007 Season > Previews > Chester (h)

The Opposition

After four years in the Conference, Chester were promoted back to the league in 2004. Since then, and despite a series of managers including Mark Wright, Ian Rush, Keith Curle and Wright again, Chester have done little to suggest they can make the next step up, finishing 20th and 15th.

Last season was a rollercoaster. Keith Curle oversaw an impressive, and somewhat surprising, first half of the season as Chester sat fourth in League 2 at the start of December, only one point outside the automatic promotion places. After that the club lost 11 of the next 12 games and Curle was sacked as City plummeted down the table. Mark Wright was then reappointed as manager, but had little impact and with nine games to go, and after picking up only four points from a possible 57, Chester were rooted to the foot of League 2. Somehow their fortunes changed and they pulled off five consecutive wins, pushing the club into midtable and confirming safety with two games to spare.

The Team
Chester currently lie in 15th place in League 2, four points ahead of Town. This season has been erratic (they have lost their last two home games and won their last two away games) and Chester haven’t looked like relegation nor promotion material. Their away form is relatively strong and their four victories on the road have come (impressively) at Bury, MK Dons, Peterborough and Notts County. Due to Bury fielding an ineligible player, Chester were reinstated in the FA Cup and recorded a commendable goalless draw at home to Ipswich on Saturday.

The club made a massive overhaul of the playing staff last summer with around 40 players making their way either in or out of the club. Jonathan Walters (left) joined from Wrexham in the summer and is top scorer with 10 goals while Greg Blundell has 8 so far and has already beaten last season’s total. Keeper John Danby is the only ever present so far this season and defender Ashley Westwood is one of their most experienced players having spent two seasons in the Premiership with Bradford. Ricky Ravenhill spent the first month of the season on loan to the Cheshire side.

Key Player
Midfielder Roberto Martinez (left) signed for Chester in the summer and has amassed nearly 300 appearances, the majority for Wigan and Swansea, whilst also playing for Real Zaragoza. The 33-year-old skilful winger has three goals to his name this season and has only missed one game all season (through suspension).

Recent Form

Currently 18th in League Two.
WNotts Co(a)2-1
LMK Dons(h)0-3
Currently 15th in League Two.

Top Scorers

Peter Bore5
Gary Jones5
Walters 9

Team News


  • Nick Fenton serves the first of a two-match ban, whilst Gary Jones returns after serving a four-match ban.

  • Nicky Rizzo has joined on a one-month loan deal and Peter Till has made his loan deal permanent.

  • Justin Whittle is doubtful with a shoulder injury.
  • Lee Steele has made his loan move from Leyton Orient permanent.

  • Phil Bolland serves a one-match ban.
  • Probable Teams

    1Phil Barnes
    2John McDermott
    6Justin Whittle
    3Tom Newey
    20Gary Croft
    17Peter Till
    8Paul Bolland
    11Anthony Pulis
    TBANicky Rizzo
    19Gary Jones
    14Martin Paterson
    12John Danby
    19Paul Linwood
    21David Artell
    18Ashley Westwood
    2Simon Marples
    7Jamie Hand
    6Sean Hessey
    17Laurence Wilson
    20Roberto Martinez
    14Jonathan Walters
    9Gregg Blundell


    13Robert Murray
    16Danny Boshell
    23Nick Hegarty
    12Isaiah Rankin
    9Michael Reddy
    33Philip Palethorpe
    16Dean Bennett
    3Kevin Sandwith
    32Paul Rutherford
    34Lee Steele

    Head to Head

    The Mariners definitely have the upper hand against Chester and have won seven of the last eight meetings between the two sides.

    P 34 W 19 D 5 L 10 F 51 A 38

    Chester Head-to-Head (9th on The Opposition Ladder)

    Last Meeting

    The last time Chester visited Blundell Park was in February when Gary Jones scored the only goal of the game.

    Grimsby1 - 0Chester
    Jones 42  

    Grimsby Team: Mildenhall, McDermott, Futcher, R Jones, Newey, Toner, Bolland, Woodhouse, Parkinson, G Jones, Cohen
    Subs: (not used) Mendes, North, Barwick, Goodfellow, Downey

    Chester Team: Gillet, Albrighton, Hessey, Ellender (Artell, 73), Scott McNiven, Drummond, Curtis, Regan, Lowe, Branch (Richardson, 77), Blundell
    Subs (not used): Harrison, Vaughan, Tait

    Attendance: 4,058   Report


    Town 1-0 Chester

    Reader's POMs


    Click on the link for directions to Blundell Park (left).

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    Click on the link for ticket prices to Blundell Park.

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