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Painting the Town
By: Rob Sedgwick
GRIMSBY Town claimed their first win of the season against League One Opposition in the Johnstone's Paint Trophy. Although they went a goal down against the run of play, the Mariners came back in style knocking four goals past their Yorkshire opponents to progress into Round Two.
Town boss Alan Buckley made two changes for the visit of the Terriers, whose last visit to Blundell Park had ended in a 1-0 defeat in 2000 which had caused then manager Steve Bruce to be sacked. Scunthorpe on-loan defender Dave Mulligan replaced the suspended Ryan Bennett at right back, but Paul Bolland was not risked after being concussed in Saturday's game against Shrewsbury. Taylor came in in Bolland's place with Alan Buckley choosing to adopt a 4-4-2 formation in a quest to create more goalscoring opportunities.
Huddersfield did not treat the Mariners lightly, making only two changes from the line-up which won at Millwall on Saturday.
Town's supporters were all confined to the Carlsberg Stand, with the remaining home areas of Blundell Park closed to the public.
Town started brightly and Till got in behind the defence to cross to Toner whose volleyed short was cleared for a corner.
Andy Taylor, who looked lively up front all night, used his pace to beat Clarke, and laid it back to Rankin. The ball fell too far behind the big striker and was eventually cleared by a defender.
Taylor's pace continued to cause trouble for Huddersfield, and the young striker set up chances for Boshell (shot over) and Rankin (shot at keeper).
Another Taylor run saw him cut inside and lay the ball back to Boshell, whose shot was cleared off the line by Clarke
Despite dominating the first half the Mariners conceded a goal in a sucker punch with 45 minutes on the clock. The Mariners lost the ball in midfield, and were rapidly punished by the League One outfit. Schofield played the ball into the unmarked Beckett, who laid it off to Collins to slot home. It was a clinical finish by Huddersfield but Town had made the mistake of giving the ball away.
Town braced themselves for a half time lecture but won two late corners deep into injury time. The second of these saw a pinpoint cross from Boshell land on Fenton's head, who powered it into the top corner.
After the break Town were ahead almost immediately. Fenton got his head on another set piece. The ball was going straight to the 'keeper but Rankin nipped in to deflect it past the 'keeper for the big striker's first goal of the season.
Town were not finished though and a ball through over the top for Hunt to run onto, saw the shaven-headed midfield's shot rebound to Toner who managed to keep the ball down with a volley to extend the Mariners' lead.
Huddersfield came back a little after the quick three goals by Town. Firstly they had a strong penalty shout for a handball, then Barnes made an excellent save from a Huddersfield free kick to tip the ball out for a corner.
Town brought on Danny North to replace Rankin and it was not long before Town added a bizarre fourth. The Huddersfield 'keeper came out to challenge for a ball in the air. The ball deflected into the path of Till, who stuck out a foot instinctively. There was just enough pace on the ball to see it dribble into the net and put the game out of sight.
In the closing stages Fenton had a header which flashed over from a corner, Young had a header wide for Huddersfield and Peter Bore came on and looked lively and almost created a goal. Barnes then saved well from Collins, who had opened the scoring what seemed a half a lifetime ago.
Town, watched by just 1200 people, go into the hat which includes Leeds United for Round Two of the Johnstone's Paint Trophy.
Man of the Match was Andy Taylor who came into the side and caused havoc for the Huddersfield defence. All his performance lacked was a goal, but on this showing he will be pushing for a starting place at Accrington on Saturday after the young Grimbarian didn't even make the bench on Saturday. After this performance Alan Buckley will also find it hard to break up a winning side or formation as the Mariners push for their first three points of the season at the Crown Ground.
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