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The Crown Ground
The Crown Ground

Preview: Accrington v Grimsby

By: Alex Green
Date: 12/04/2007

TOWN'S first trip to The Crown Ground (Fraser Eagle Stadium) in nearly half a century has The Mariners fighting for nothing in particular but pride. While Stanley desperately fight to keep the league place they earned so brilliantly last season.

Home > 2006-2007 Season > Previews > Accrington (a)


The Opposition

Overview
Accrington Stanley were relegated from the football league in 1962 and after many years spent in the wilderness, stunned the football world by storming to the Conference title last season and retaking their position as a league team. Only seven years previous in 1999, Accrington were relegated to the Unibond Division 1 (3 divisions below league 2), but then appointed John Coleman who has overseen a dramatic upturn in the club’s fortunes.

Promotion to the Unibond Premier was at the first attempt in 2000 and they were promoted back to the Conference in 2003. After two seasons finishing tenth, Stanley made a solid start to last season before hitting top form in November. They picked up an incredible 50 points from a possible 54 (including 10 successive victories), opening up a 16 point lead and comfortably securing the championship with three games to spare.

The Team
Accrington currently lie in 18th place in League 2, three points ahead of Town. They made a reasonable start to the season and sat in 9th place only 6 weeks ago, however they are now on a run of four consecutive league defeats. Their away form has been starting to slip and they have lost their last three away games including an FA cup defeat at Mansfield; the only win on their travels this season came at Torquay. Their highlight of the season so far was undoubtedly knocking Notts Forest out of the Carling Cup.

The majority of Accrington’s team formed their success last season and originate from the non-league. Due to the club’s finances influencing the playing side, both this season’s top scorers, Gary Roberts and Ian Craney, have both gone on loan to higher division teams (Ipswich and Swansea respectively). Left back Leam Richardson is one of the most experienced players at the club having played for Bolton and Blackpool, whilst defenders Peter Cavanagh (left) and Robbie Williams have both racked up well over 200 appearances each.

Key Player
After years spent in the non-league game, Paul Mullin (left) joined Stanley in 2000 at the age of 26. Since then he has scored 162 goals and won the player of the year award for four of the last five seasons. This season he has six goals so far and, in the absence of Roberts and Craney, is the major threat up front.

Recent Form

TownAccrington
DWycombe(h)2-2
WMK Dons(a)2-1
LNotts Co(a)0-2
LPeterborough(h)0-2
WSwindon(h)1-0
Currently 14th in League Two.
LHartlepool(a)0-1
WPeterborough(h)3-2
LWalsall(a)2-3
WHereford(h)2-0
WTorquay(h)1-0
Currently 19th in League Two.

Top Scorers

TownAccrington
Peter Bore8
Ciaran Toner8
Mullin 14
Todd10

Team News

TownAccrington

  • Ryan Bennett is expected to be fit after limping off in Wednesday defeat in the Youth Cup Final

  • No other suspensions or injury worries for Buckley
  • Andy Mangan will miss the game through suspension after been sent off against Hartlepool on Monday.

  • While Liverpool loanees Goalkeeper David Martin and Midfielder Godwin Antwi are expected to play
  • Probable Teams

    TownAccrington
    1Phil Barnes
    2John McDermott
    6Justin Whittle
    5Nick Fenton
    3Tom Newey
    17Peter Till
    16Danny Boshell
    8Paul Bolland
    25James Hunt
    10Ciaran Toner
    22Danny North
    42 David Martin
    2 Peter Cavanagh
    4 Robbie Williams
    43 Godwin Antwi
    12 Phil Edwards
    17 Andy Todd
    6 Andy Proctor
    20 Jay Harris
    7 Sean Doherty
    10 Paul Mullin
    14Romauld Boco

    Subs

    TownAccrington
    13Robert Murray
    20Gary Croft
    28Bennett
    18Peter Bore
    19Gary Jones
    25Ian Dunbavin
    5Michael Welch
    15Danny Ventre
    3Leam Richardson
    36Alan Rogers

    Head to Head

    Town on paper have an excellent record against Stanley, the only problem is they have once played they once in the last 45 years, when the Mariners won 2-0 back at Blundell Park in November.

    P 23 W 17 D 0 L 6 F 52 A 26

    Accrington Head-to-Head (4th on The Opposition Ladder)

    Last Meeting

    Town last travelled to Accrington at the very start of the sixties, in what was to prove a good season for the Mariners, although they just missed out on promotion to Division Two. Rafferty (24) and Hunt (33) were amongst the top scorers in the Third Division that season, and they both scored at the Crown ground.

    16-Jan-1960
    Accrington2 - 4Grimsby
    (Scorers not known) Rafferty,Scott,Hunt,Fell

    Grimsby Team: Barnett, Keeble, Richardson, Wellbourne, Carrington, Donovan, Scott, Cullen, Rafferty, Hunt, Duff.

    Prediction

    Accrington 2-2 Grimsby

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