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Question of the WeekWill Grimsby get relegated?
|The Dreaming Spires
Just Like a Library
By: Rob Sedgwick
Date: 02/12/2023 (Last updated: 03/12/2023)
GRIMSBY gave a good account of themselves at Oxford but their League One opponents were more clinical in front of goal and punished Town for their mistakes. Town conceded an early goal direct from their own corner, and Oxford wrapped up the game with a second with 15 minutes to go.
But for most of the game, Grimsby looked competitive and had chances to score, the best opportunity falling to Wilson in the second half. Throughout the game, Grimsby played some good football, although Oxford created more of the better chances.
For the second game, Grimsby played in an enormous stadium which was only sparsely populated. Only a sizeable away contingent offered any vocal support for their side. The match was played in sub-zero conditions with the fog restricting visibility but never bad enough to threaten the game.
Alex Hunt came in for Arthur Gnahoua in the game's only change.
Grimsby had a lot of early possession and won their corner when a Rose break ended with a deflected shot. Grimsby sent everyone up for the corner and were caught on the counterattack when Murphy broke and raced the length of the pitch. Cartwright saved the initial shot but McGuane had an easy goal from the rebound.
Cartwright denied Harris from a Murphy cross, then Khan produced a save from Beadle who saw it late but it lacked power to trouble him.
Cartwright was needed again to tip a Rodrigues shot over, with the poor visibility making shots from distance worth trying. Right at the end of the first half, a run by Harris saw him drift past two defenders and deliver a perfect cross but there was nobody to tap it in.
Town started the second half well and matched Oxford. Substitute Bodin had a header which bounced and drew another good save from Cartwright. Then Town's best chance came when their two subs Eisa and Wilson combined and Wilson broke through the defensive line and drew a good save from Beadle, but unlike Oxford's goal, there was no follow-up.
Oxford then doubled their advantage when a dinking cross from Brannagan found the head of Beadle who this time found the target.
Grimsby continued to press and Wilson again went close, forcing another save, and Rose stumbled and couldn't reach the rebound.
In the end, Oxford triumphed but Grimsby can be proud of their endeavours and played some good football. Alex Hunt was the stand-out player for the Mariners and Conteh put in another good performance from midfield and the new style of play bodes well for the future.
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