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Match Reports

Match Report: Grimsby Town 0-0 Cambridge United

Town make it three home goalless draws in a row

28 October 2017

Anne Boyers

Grimsby Town registered a third successive home goalless draw as they shared the points with Cambridge United at a windy Blundell Park.

Both sides appeared to struggle to adapt to the conditions in a game low on real quality as the Mariners extended their unbeaten sequence to seven league games.

Town almost broke the deadlock early in the game when Sam Jones hit the post, while big striker Uche Ikpeazu had Cambridge's bet chances of he game but did not take advantage.

Once again, an unchanged Town side was named as boss Russell Slade kept faith with the starting XI from last week's goalless draw at Morecambe.

James McKeown started in goal, with Ben Davies, Nathan Clarke, Danny Collins and Paul Dixon forming the defence.

Siriki Dembele, James Berrett, Luke Summerfield and Martyn Woolford were the midfielders and Jones linked up with Scott Vernon in attack.

The substitutes were Ben Killip, Sam Kelly, Diallang Jaiyesimi, JJ Hooper, Karleigh Osborne, Harry Cardwell and Zak Mills.

Cambridge arrived in Cleethorpes sitting one point and one place ahead of the Mariners in the League Two table, having won their last two games.

They would look to the likes of Ikpeazu for the ammunition to fire them towards a third successive victory.

Cambridge looked to have created the first opportunity of the game on three minutes when Ikpeazu kept the ball in on the right and beat Dixon but the defender recovered well as the striker made his way into the box.

Seconds later, the Mariners went close to opening the scoring when Jones capitalised on a mistake on the edge of the Cambridge box and showed good persistence to work an opening for himself before hitting a low shot which bounced back off the post.

Two corners in quick succession ensured the early home pressure was kept up, although neither of them led to a chance in frront of goal.

Giant forward Ikpeazu won a free kick in a promising position on nine minutes but when the ball was lifted into the penalty area, Collins was there to head it clear.

Ikpeazu was heavily involved again after Summerfield lost possession in midfield, with the striker surging through the middle on a dangerous-looking run until Collins managed to shepherd the ball out for a goal kick.

A Davies cross from the right was headed behind for a corner by Greg Taylor, with Summerfield's ball from the flag pushed over the bar for another.  That turned into a third corner in quick succession, which was cleared.

Town kept possession though and the ball was worked forward, with Davies hitting a deep cross for Vernon, whose header was well-saved by visiting keeper David Forde for yet another corner.  This time, the ball was caught by Forde.

At the other end, a foul on Ikpeazu gave the visitors a free kick in a dangerous position.  Ikpeazu got the ball over the Grimsby wall from it but his chip lacked the power needed to beat McKeown, who claimed a comfortable catch.

The away side should have taken the lead on 24 minutes after a good build-up in and around the Grimsby box.  The move led to Jevani Brown playing a low ball across the six-yard line for Ikpeazu but the striker side-footed wide.

Midfielder Liam O'Neil was shown he first yellow card of the game for bringing Dembele down on the Town right but the hosts were unable to create anything from the resulting free kick.

A good cross from Dixon on the left on 28 minutes found its way through to Jones, who worked an opening before hitting a shot which was blocked by Forde for a corrner.  The referee spotted an infringement as the ball came in fom the flag and blew for a Cambridge free kick.

Cambridge, having shown little ambition after the game entered a lull, won a corner on 37 minutes which eventually led to a goal kick after Ikpeazu had won the initial header.

Dembele had a shot from 25 yards on 41 minutes which bounced just wide of the target, before Davies won a corner on the right two minutes later.  Woolford's delivery was caught by Forde.

Three added minutes were signalled to be played at the end of the half as Collins gave away a cheap corner, which was eventually dealt with by Clarke.

A free kick came for the away side on the right soon afterwards, which was also headed away by Clarke.

That proved to be the last opportunity for either side to make an impression in front of goal as the half ended with the score goalless.

No changes were made before the restart and Cambridge won a corner four minutes in when Davies put the ball out following a good build-up by the visitors. 

Another corner came soon afterwards but again, it was dealt with by the Town defence.

Brad Halliday was booked for a foul on Dixon on 52 minutes, before Berrett joined him in the referee's notebook soon afterwards for a foul on the Cambridge right.

At the other end, a free kick was sent into the box by Woolford on the right but Clarke's header from it went through to Forde.

A Cambridge corner came soon afterwards on the left and it was headed out for another one by Vernon.  This time, the ball was headed clear.

An opportunity came at the other end on the hour when Jones played the ball to Dembele insde the box and he skipped past Forde before pulling it back across goal, although nobody in black and white was in the right place to put it into the net.

Jabo Ibehre was sent on in place of Medy Elito as Cambridge manager Shaun Derry made the first substitution of the game on 63 minutes.

Dembele fired over the bar from 20 yards after a good build-up by the Mariners, before an excellent chance came for the away side through Brown, who made some space to shoot from inside the box but was denied by McKeown.

The away pressure continued with four quick corners, the third of which was glanced against his own post by Collins, before the anger eventually came to an end when the fourth was put out of play from the flag.

Jones was replaced by Hooper in the Grimsby attack on 71 minutes, with George Maris coming on for Pietro Mingoa for the visitors six minutes later.

Jaiyesimi came on for Dembele with six minutes to go, then a Cambridge corner led to Halliday shooting wide from the edge of the box.

A Town attack on 88 minutes led to a corner on the right but it led to nothing as Vernon eventually prodded the ball wide.

The aay side ha a chance to win it as three added minutes were signalled when Ikpeazu found himself one-on-one with McKeown but the keeper came to the rescue, diving to make an excellent save and preserve a point for his side.

Town are next in competitive action when they travel to Plymouth Argyle in the FA Cup on Saturday, after Tuesday's benefit match for former skipper Craig Disley at Blundell Park.


Town

1 James McKeown 
2 Ben Davies 
3 Paul Dixon 
6 Danny Collins 
5 Nathan Clarke (C) 
7 James Berrett 
27 Siriki Dembele 
19 Luke Summerfield 
25 Martyn Woolford 
10 Sam Jones 
21 Scott Vernon

Subs

30 Ben Killip 
12 Zak Mills 
14 Karleigh Osborne 
20 Diallang Jaiyesimi 
11 Sam Kelly 
17 Harry Cardwell 
9 JJ Hooper

Cambridge Utd

13 Dimitar Mitov 
12 George Taft 
22 Paul Lewis 
11 Harrison Dunk 
27 Matthew Foy 
14 Jabo Ibehre 
18 George Maris


Referee: Seb Stockbridge


Attendance: 4,091 (214)


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