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Town Slump to Fourth Defeat
By: Rob Sedgwick
GRIMSBY slumped to their fourth successive defeat, this time losing to relegation-threatened Nuneaton who fully deserved the win, which lifts them out of the bottom four over Lincoln. Town managed 1 shot on target all night, right at the end of the game; Nuneaton had 9 shots on target.
Town made 5 changes at the start of the game with all five on the bench having started the last game. This was partly due to the squad rotation policy to keep players fresh and partly due to players returning from injury. It was the last chance for those on show to stake a claim for a Wembley place on Sunday.
A quiet start to the game saw no chances to either side in the first 15 mins, before Nuneaton slowly began to assert their superiority.
The home side took the lead on 17 when York burst down the right wing and crossed for Brown for a tap-in. Town seemed to lose what impetus they had once they went a goal down and it was Nuneaton who dominated the rest of the first half - and most of the game.
Town nearly conceded a second when McKeown then came outside his box for a ball and was left stranded. Town were fortunate to be able to clear the ball for a corner.
Nuneaton were by far better side in the first half. The managers tried to change things when Marshall came on for Devitt and half time and Hannah made way for Cook shortly afterwards. But it made little difference.
Grimsby created nothing in a terrible second half, and only mustered a few chances in injury time when John-Lewis struck the side netting.
Town now have the Wembley fixture next before they can concentrate entirely on the league. Fans have been speaking of nothing but Wembley for weeks and it seems that the players have had that on their mind as well. The Mariners are still in a good position in the league to claim a play-off place, but they can't afford to lose many more games otherwise they could miss out on even that.
Nuneaton: Burge, Phillips, Dean, Cowan, O'Halloran, York, Forsdick, Armson, Sleath, Brown, Moult
Subs: Cartwright, Adams, Dance, Gordon, McNamee
Grimsby: McKeown, Hatton, Pearson, Miller, Wood, Colbeck, Disley, Naylor, Devitt, Hannah, John-Lewis
Subs: Thomas, Artus, Cook, Brodie, Marshall
Referee: Rob Whitton (Essex)
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