The Grimsby Town FC


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Rob Jones
Rob Jones

Lessons from the Scunts

By: Ben Bowers
Date: 01/02/2010

AFTER realising that going to glamorous Aldershot to watch the 91st best team in England might be painful (e.g. a penalty miss), it just happened that I was invited to watch QPR play. It was a coincidence that Rangers were playing the small club down the road from Grimsby known as Scunthorpe.

The game was not a classic-it was good however to see Rob Jones play again looking exactly the same as he did with Town, commanding in the air. Most of the match saw abuse (not going into too much detail) at Flavio Briatore. We may be angry at Fenty for presiding over a club on its way down but you cannot say he is not dedicated to our club. . I believe that QPR would be challenging for at least a play off place had it not been for Briatore s constant change of manager (rumour has it he has a hand in selecting the team).

At the game on Saturday, a surprisingly good crowd of 13000 turned up, Scunthorpe got an undeserved win. QPR had the better chances, Michael Liegertwood having the best of them as well as two good headed chances from Gorkss and Fortune. In the end though Scunthorpe got lucky and an offside goal from Gary Thompson was enough to give the about 1000 quiet Scunthorpe fans their wish.

Although Town were not involved, there are two things as a Town fan to take from this match. Firstly although many supporters would welcome a change of chairman, there are many worse chairmen than Fenty. He cares about our club and in my view he does not deserve the abuse he gets as he has saved our club from administration and has not distanced the club from the fans as has Briatore. QPR s fans have never felt so far apart from their club and the fan satisfaction rating is low. There were protests during and after yesterday s game.

It also shows that changing the manager now, even though there are probably better out there than Woods, is not the best thing to do for the stability and the long term future of the club. The protests at Man United and Portsmouth are partly because the lack of consideration for what the fans want as well as financial troubles. Fenty has the fans interests at heart-I am sure of that. I can t see many other people wanting to take over a team in danger of falling into the Conference. That is my defence of Fenty.

The other thing which frustrates me is how one Lincolnshire side is sitting nicely mid-table championship when another Lincolnshire team is struggling to save its football league status. The population of the two towns are similar and traditionally Grimsby has had the upper hand. One contributory feature must be the scouting. Apart from Bennett who else has there been who was nurtured by Town and has gone on to bigger and better things? Scunthorpe have had Billy Sharpe to name one of many. The most successful clubs have the best scouts. Peter Taylor performed that role for Brian Clough for many years, and Pat Rice does so now for Arsene Wenger, the various scouts Alex Ferguson has employed which have got him players such as Beckham, Scholes etc. We need good scouts so that the footballing talent of the generation of 10-14 year olds is at Grimsby. This will help us regain our status if we go down this year.

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