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Match Reports

Match Report: Grimsby Town 2-2 Colchester United

Town come from behind twice to earn a point.

26 September 2017

Carl Leslie
JJ Hooper celebrates after scoring against Colchester United.

A late penalty from substitute Sam Jones earned Grimsby Town a point after Colchester United had twice taken the lead at Blundell Park.

The visitors, without an away win so far this season, took the lead through Kyel Reid with just five minutes on the clock but Town responded quickly as JJ Hooper equalised within two minutes.

Colchester went back in fromt 13 minutes after half-time when Reid scored his second of the game and they had looked set for victory but Town fought back again, with Jones levelling the scores from the spot to ensure the game ended with honours even.

Three changes were made to the Grimsby starting XI after the defeat at Newport on Saturday, with Scott Vernon, Hooper and Luke Summerfield coming in as Jones, Jamille Matt and Mitch Rose dropped out.

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

Siriki Dembele, James Berrett, Summerfield and Martyn Woolford were the midfielders, with Vernon and Hooper making up the strike partnership.

Jones, Rose and Matt were all named among the substitutes, along with Ben Killip, Karleigh Osborne, Diallang Jaiyesimi and Harry Cardwell.

Colchester arrived in Cleethorpes without a point from their games on the road so far this campaign and with only one away win in the calendar year to date.

Their team included former Town loanee Brandon Comley, who spent much of last season at Blundell Park on loan from Queen's Park Rangers.

Colchester made the brighter start to the game, winning early corners and controlling the play in the opening stages.

And they opened the scoring on five minutes, when the Mariners failed to fully clear their lines from a corner and REID hit a low shot from 25 yards which beat the unsighted McKeown and hit the back of the net.

Grimsby's response was swift and as it turned out, they were behind for less than two minutes.  A ball over the top was chased by HOOPER and after it came down for him, he held off a defender on the edge of the box before slotting past visiting keeper Sam Walker for 1-1.

A stoppage came when Hooper went down with an injury on 10 minutes but he was passed fit to play on after receiving treatment.

Woolford let fly with a long-range effort soon afterwards but coul only watch as it flew over Walker's bar.

Striker Brandon Hanlon was brought down to give Colchester a free kick in a central position on 19 minutes but when the shot came in from it, McKeown was able to dive to his left and stop it.

Town had an opportunity to attack with a free kick from the right two minutes later an after it was sent into the box by Davies, Clarke's header fell for Summerfield but his volley went well over the bar.

Comley was shown the first yellow card of the evening for a poor challenge from behind on Hooper but the resulting free kick was not well executed, with Dixon's low ball running away from Vernon and out for a goal kick.

At the other end, a long thrown from the visitors evntually led to a cornr when a shot was deflected over the bar but the low ball from the flag was easily cleared by Summerfield.

A free kick for a foul by Davies just after the half-hour caused no problems as it led to an offside decision, before a push on Dembele gave the Mariners a free kick of their own in a promising position.  Davies' ball was headed away before Clarke could get on the end of it and a foul by Berrett fully relieved the pressure on the away defence.

Another free kick came at the side of the Town penalty area on 38 minutes but again, the delivery into the box was dealt with.

A run from Dembele came to an end when he slipped near the edge of the Colchester box as the Mariners looked to create some danger, before a long throw from Clarke was headed clear.

A foul on Davies gave the hosts another chance to get the ball into the penalty area and after Colchester were unable to clear their lines from it, the ball was returned into the box by Berrett and it eventually dropped for Dembele, whose low shot crashed back off the far post and stayed out.

Two added minutes were signalled as Town continued to attack, with a corner from the right being punched clear from danger by Walker in what proved to be the last action of the half.

The Mariners had stepped up in the closing stages of the half and would look to continue that momentum into the second half as they aimed to grab the advantage.

No changes were made before the restart and as mist descended on Blundell Park, Town had the first opportunity to attack wih a free kick given for a push on Vernon, although Woolford's delivery from the right went straight to Walker.

Right-back Ryan Jackson hit a cross which landed on the roof of the net, before a Grimsby penalty appeal was turned down after Dembele went down inside the box.

Woolford looked to have gone close after letting fly with an effort from 25 yard on 56 minutes, which some of th home fans thought had gone into the net in the fog.

But instead, when the second goal came, it was the visitors who reclaimed the advantage.  After an excellent build-up, it was REID who was again on target, working some space inside the penalty area before bending a shot beyond McKeown and in off the far post.

A corner was cleared as Town again looked for a quick response to going behind, before dembele won another flag-kick as the pressure continued, althoug Woolford's delivery was taken by keeper Walker.

Matt replaced Hooper in Grimsby's first substitution three minutes after the hour, before a Berrett header was stopped by Walker after Davies' cross, with the fog now lifting.

A foul by Davies on Reid led to a free kick for the visitors but Kane Vincent-Young's ball from it was headed over the bar.

A double substitution for the away side saw Sammie Szmodics and Cameron James replace Hanlon and Reid, with Jaiyesimi coming on for Woolford in the colours of the Mariners at the same time.

Another home penalty appeal came soon afterwards, with the referee instead pointing for a corner, which was eventually dealt with by the Colchester defence.

Substitute Szmodics had to be replaced himself soon after coming on, as he went down with what looked to be a bad leg injury and had to be carried from the field on a stretcher.  Sean Murray came on in his place, while Grimsby's last change was made at the same time and saw Jones sent on for Vernon.

Town won a corner as the clock ticked into the last 10 minutes but after the ball from the flag bounced around the box, nobody in black and white was able to force it into the net.

Vincent-Young was booked for time-wasting at a throw-in as Colchester looked to win the clock down an hol onto their avantage.

Another Mariners corner was headed away, before Walker caught Davies' retun ball into the penalty area with five minutes left to play.

Town looked to be heading towards defeat but they were thrown a lifeline with two minutes to go when Matt was fouled in the box by defender Ryan Innes and the referee pointed to the penalty spot.  JONES made no mistake from 12 yards, stepping up and finding the net for 2-2.

Six added minutes were signalled, with Town now pushing for what may previously have seemed an unlikely winner.

Berrett was booked for a foul, then a free kick from the Town left was driven into the box but  a snap-shot was stopped by Walker.

Town kept going but were ultimately unable to force a winner and were forced to settle for a point.

They are next in action on Saturday, when Lincoln City are the visitors to Blundell Park.


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 72' 
21 Scott Vernon 78' 
9 JJ Hooper 64'


30 Ben Killip 
14 Karleigh Osborne 
20 Diallang Jaiyesimi 72' 
10 Sam Jones 78'
8 Mitch Rose 
17 Harry Cardwell 
29 Jamille Matt 64'

Colchester Utd

1 Sam Walker 
2 Ryan Jackson
22 Kane Vincent-Young 
6 Frankie Kent (C) 
26 Ryan Inniss 
14 Brandon Comley 
8 Doug Loft 
17 Kyel Reid 
19 Mikael Mandron 
7 Drey Wright 
21 Brandon Hanlan 


29 Rene Gilmartin 
35 Cameron James 
3 Lewis Kinsella   
16 Sean Murray 
10 Sammie Szmodics 
15 Nicke Kabamba 
27 Sanmi Odelusi 

Attendance: 3,438 (89)

Referee: Darren Drysdale

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