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10 March 2018 Venue Blundell Park Attendance

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English Football League - League Two

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Match Reports

MATCH REPORT: Grimsby Town 1-1 Port Vale

Late equaliser rescues a point for the Mariners

10 March 2018

Lee Blease
Siriki Dembele in action v Port Vale

A late equaliser rescued a point for Grimsby Town against Port Vale in new manager Michael Jolley's first game in charge at Blundell Park.

In a game against one of our rivals at the bottom end of the league table, the Mariners gave their all but looked like they were going to lose out to a single goal, scored by David Worrall.

It could have been worse for the hosts after a penalty was awarded against them but for the second game in a row, goalkeeper and man of the match James McKeown kept the spot-kick out as Michael Tonge was denied from 12 yards.

That gave the home players and fans a huge lift and they attacked in search of an equaliser, eventually getting their reward as the game moved into stoppage time, when James Berrett was in the right place to score the vital goal.

Jolley's first starting XI included five changes from the team that lost at Carlisle last week, with new signing Andrew Fox coming straight in after joining the club yesterday.

He replaced the injured Paul Dixon at left back, while Aston Villa loanee and England Under-19 international centre back Easah Suliman was given his Town debut as Ben Davies, Harry Clifton and Siriki Dembele all came back into the team.

James McKeown started in goal, with Davies, Nathan Clarke, Suliman, Danny Collins and Fox forming a back five.

James Berrett, Mitch Rose, Clifton, Dembele and striker Jamille Matt completed the line-up, with Ben Killip, Zak Mills, Reece Hall-Johnson, JJ Hooper, Sam Kelly, Harry Cardwell and Diallang Jaiyesimi all named on the bench.

Port Vale began the day a point and two places behind the Mariners in the League Two table, with Neil Aspin's men needing the points to climb further away from the bottom two.

They were without star man Tom Pope through injury, although they were able to call on the experienced midfield duo of Danny Pugh and MichaTonge.

Town started well, with Clifton winning an early free kick inside the Vale half which eventually led to Dembele hooking the ball over the bar after Davies' delivery.

A free kick from the visitors was cleared by Fox but the next time the away side attacked, they took the lead.  Marcus Harness sent a cross over from the left and when it fell to WORRALL at the far post, he had the relatively simple task of firing past McKeown and into the net.

Town's response saw Fox win a corner on the left but Davies' delivery was cleared and Vale broke through the dangerous Harness, who cut in from the right but sent his shot over the bar from 20 yards.

A good attacking move from the Mariners on 17 minutes saw the ball worked to Dembele on the right but after he cut in, defender Natan Smith showed good strength to ensure the ball went out for a goal kick.

The away side went close to doubling their lead two minutes later when another quick break saw Worrall go clear through the middle.  Luckily for Town, he could only hit the outside of the pot this time, with the ball bouncing out for a goal kick.

A Grimsby free kick from just inside the Vale half saw Davies find Clarke but the defender's header lacked power and the ball went through to visiting keepr Ryan Boot.

A foul on Davies led to another free kick, this time on the right and level with the penalty area.  Davies' ball was cleared at the near post.

Berrett was shown the first yellow card of the game after a sliding challenge on Joe Davis, before Davies had to head the ball out for a corner as the visitors attacked again on 29 minutes.

Tonge was booked for a foul on Dembele midway inside the Vale half but the Mariners were unable to create any danger from the resulting free kick as Fox's ball beat everyboy and bouncd out for a goal kick.

A good run from Clifton brought applause from the home fans as the youngster picked the ball up in midfield and made his way to the edge of the box, although he was unable to turn it into a goalscoring opportunity.

Matt won a corner on the right soon afterwards but nobody could get on the end of Fox's delivery as it bounce in the six-yard box.

A dipping shot from Luke Hannant was pushed away by McKeown, before the keeper made a brilliant save to deny Anton Forrester as his first-time effort looked destined for the top corner.

The fourth official signalled three additional minutes to be played at the end of the half and a foul on Clifton near the right corner flag in the first of them brought a chance to put pressure on the Vale goal.  Davies' free kick found its way through to Clarke but he could only head over the bar.

Another Grimsby attack saw Dembele find Clifton but he slipped as he shaped to shoot an nobody else was alble to get a strong enough contact on the ball to trouble Boot as the away side eventually cleared.

That proved to be the last chance of the half, meaning Port Vale took a deserved lead into the dressing rooms at half-time and Town again had it all to do  in the second half.

No changes were made before the restart and the Mariners survived an early scare when Forrester had a chance within seconds.

A free kick 30 yards from goal gave the visitors another opportunity but Tonge's shot got a heavy deflection which took the ball through to McKeown.

Dembele had Grimsby's first chance of the second half when he took the ball forward an shot from 20 yards, although Boot got down to comfortably stop the low effort.

At the other end, an attempted headed clearance from Matt was volleyed back towards goal but deflected wide for a corner.

Hall-Johnson replaced Suliman as Town made the first substitution of the game on 53 minutes, with Davies pushing forward as the sub slotted in at right back.

A foul on Davies gave the Mariners a free kick inside the Vale half but he was unable to create any danger from it as the ball was cleared at the edge of the penalty area.

The visitors had been the better side throughout and they were given a chance to double their lead when a push by Rose on Forrester inside the box saw them win a penalty. Tonge stepped up to take it but McKeown got down to keep the ball out and give his side - and the home supporters - a huge lift.

Cardwell replaced Rose soon afterwards before a Town free kick which was chipped into the box by Fox but cleared for a throw-in.

Vale made a double substitution soon afterwards, with Tyrone Barnett replacing Forrester and James Gibbons coming on for Christian Montano.

A Town free kick saw Clifton fire over the bar after Fox's delivery broke to him on the edge of the penalty area.

A run from Cardwell brought a free kick after he was fouled 25 yards out on 71 minutes but Davies' shot hit the defensive wall and the ball was cleared.

Town seemed to have the momentum now and Boot had to dive to push a Cardwell shot away for a corner, which was cleared.

A corner at the other end was cleared but the away side kept possession and Harness won another flag-kick on the left, which was punched clear by McKeown.

A foul on Barnett gave Vale a free kick in a dangerous, central position on 77 minutes and before it was taken, Kelly replaced Dembele for the Mariners and Ben Whitfield came on for Hannant for Vale.

When the kick was eventually taken, Tonge's shot hit the Town wall and the hosts broke through Kelly, who was fouled near the halfway line by Worrall, who was booked.

Kelly won a corner at the other end on 80 minutes and Fox's delivery was put behind for another one on the opposite flank.  This time, the ball was headed away and after the ball was lifted back into the box, Matt was penalised for a foul.

McKeown made another magnificent save to deny Barnett after his volley looked to be heading for the net, then after the ball came off Hall-Johnson and the keeper dived on it, the referee ruled it to be a back-pass and gave the visitors an indirect free kick on the six-yard line.  There was no way through fo the away side though, as the initial shot came off the wall and McKeown got to the follow-up.

Town had all of the momentum as the clock ticked down into it final five minutes, with the majority of the 5,000-plus crowd beind them as they looked to rescue at least a point.

And that goal finally came in the first of five minutes of added time, as a long throw into the box broke for BERRETT, who turned and found the net with a low effort.

A lengthy delay came after crowd trouble immediately after the goal, with some ugly scenes taking place in the area between the Young's and Osmond stands.

The game did eventually continue but neither side could force a decisive goal and it ended honours even.

Town are next in action on Saturday, when they travel to Lincoln City.


1 James McKeown 
2 Ben Davies 
23 Andrew Fox 
6 Danny Collins 
5 Nathan Clarke (C) 
16 Easah Suliman 
7 James Berrett 
8 Mitch Rose 
15 Harry Clifton 
29 Jamille Matt 
27 Siriki Dembele


30 Ben Killip 
31 Reece Hall-Johnson 
12 Zak Mills 
20 Diallang Jaiyesimi 
11 Sam Kelly 
17 Harry Cardwell 
9 JJ Hooper

Port Vale

23 Ryan Boot 
5 Joe Davis 
11 Cristian Montaño 
33 Kyle Howkins 
24 Nathan Smith 
8 Danny Pugh (C) 
32 Michael Tonge 
34 Luke Hannant 
15 Anton Forrester 
10 David Worrall 
7 Marcus Myers-Harness

Referee: Sebastian Stockbridge

Attendance: 5,198 (3

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Ticket News

Port Vale & Stevenage Ticket Offers

8 March 2018

In co-operation with the Mariners Trust, we are pleased to offer a number of ticket offers ahead of our next two home games vs. Port Vale and Stevenage respectively.

For every ticket purchased for our home fixture vs. Port Vale on Saturday 10th March, fans have the chance to receive a like-for-like ticket for the Stevenage fixture on Good Friday FREE OF CHARGE. Please note that this ticket(s) must be requested at the time of purchase of the Port Vale ticket(s).

Next up, we are offering 'Kids Go Free' in ALL stands for home and away supporters for the above fixtures when accompanied by a responsible paying adult. This offer is also extended to season ticket holders who wish to bring a junior for free to the fixtures. Please visit the ticket office to receive your free ticket(s).

Finally, all adult category season ticket holders can bring a like-for-like guest FREE OF CHARGE for either the Port Vale or Stevenage fixture. Season ticket holders must present their season ticket books into the Blundell Park ticket office when requesting a free guest ticket. This is a great opportunity for season ticket holders to bring along friends and/or family who may have stopped attending games.  

This offer will be available from 9am on Wednesday 7th March from the Blundell Park ticket office. You can also take advantage of the offer NOW by calling 01472 605050 or by visiting Please note that a 50p administration cost per ticket will be charged on online or telephone orders, which is donated to the Youth Development Association. 

Those who have already purchased or collected their tickets, simply contact the club or visit the Blundell Park ticket office to receive any of the above offers. Please note that there will be no refunds or exchanges for these two fixtures.

As a new era begins, let's get behind the boys, new manager Michael Jolley and secure our Football League status for next season. In the words of the new gaffer, "Let's get Blundell Park rocking!".

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