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Light at the End of the Tunnel?
By: Jonathan Spurr
IT’S been a while since I wrote one of these reports and last time I did it all seemed dead and done for Town, but all of a sudden with only two games left we're still in there and we're fighting for a chance.
It’s out of our hands and everything relies on the result of Accrington vs Barnet on Tuesday. Simple equation, Accrington win or draw and we have a chance and a massive chance of surviving. A win for Barnet and its mathematically over, it’s as simple as that.
I travelled up to Darlington on the battle bus army aka the official supporters coach and we had a special guest today of Phil Norton on board filming for the late kick off and Look North. Phil seemed to enjoy himself to say the least but more on that later.
Arriving slightly ahead of schedule a few of the Battle Bus Army decided to play football in the car park. Luckily being a huge stadium we had a great amount of space to choice from, my side won 4-0 with Josh Garner scoring a Messi like winner. The atmosphere pre-match was amazing and a win was sensed.
Now more importantly on to the match....
Grimsby made two changes to the game with Sweeney replacing Sinclair and Peacock for Wright. Darlo team news - well to be fair I wasn't interested in their starting 11 it was up to ours to win it so I didn't take the time to check it.
For the first 10-15 min's it was pretty much a 50/50 event and one that the Mariners should have taken an early lead in but for one reason or another it didn't come.
Grimsby did take the lead on around 20 mins after a Sweeney corner was met by Lancashire who headed the ball into the back of the net. 1-0 Town. Elsewhere Barnet was still 0-0 at Rotherham, so fingernails were still being bitten. Grimsby continued to dominate the first half with Darlington showing why they were relegated with poor passing and even poorer shooting.
Sweeney was substituted not long after holding his back, with Leary coming on. Bad news for the Mariners fans as Sweeney was having a much improved game for the Mariners after the Torquay game, good news followed shortly after and the Mariners fans jumped into voice when news filtered around - Barnet 0 Rotherham 1. With the followers in voice the players upped their tempo and not long after it paid off, in the last minute of stoppage time the Mariners went 2-0 up through Akpro who volleyed in a Devitt cross from 10 yards out. The half time whistle followed.
Half Time: Mariners 2 Darlington 0
Darlington came out stronger in the second half and created the most opening chances but some good saves from Colgan and some poor strikers kept the score line at 2-0.
With Darlo attacking more, more bad news came around when Atkinson gave away a free kick on the edge of the area even though he clearly got the ball. That was the start of it when Lancashire was substituted and Linwood brought on with Olly suffering an injury at this time I don't know what it was.
The game filtered on with both sides having some decent opportunities but through some decent goal keeping the score remained the same until full time. In the final few minutes Akpa Akpro was replaced with an ankle/foot injury. We may have won this game and got the much needed 3 points but we also suffered 3 valuable players gaining injuries. Let’s hope they are ok for Saturday when Barnet come to visit, if we are still in for a fighting chance of staying up.
Now normally I would say off to the pub for vodka but instead, I'm off to dye the brothers’ hair purple after he lost a bet with me so see you all at Accrington on Tuesday for the Town fans who are travelling down to cheer Accy on!
Final Score: Darlington 0 Grimsby 2
Man of Match, Everyone who played. They played with pride passion and heart. I don't ask for much more.
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