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Opposition in Focus: Grimsby Town

A look at this weekend's opponents, the Mariners

23 February 2018

Tomorrow sees Exeter City make the mammoth 300-mile trip to Blundell Park to face Grimsby Town in Sky Bet League Two.

The Grecians go into Saturday's match confident after Tuesday night's late turnaround against Crewe Alexandra, as the Grecians battled back from an 88th-minute goal to score two in injury time to win the match.

The Mariners are having a tough time of late, parting company with manager Russel Slade on February 11 after a run of 12 matches without a win, and are currently under the watch of Paul Wilkinson as caretaker-manager.

Grimsby's history:

The club was formed in 1878 after a meeting held at the Wellington Arms public house in Freeman Street. The club was originally called Grimsby Pelham, this being the family name of the Earl of Yarborough, a significant landowner in the area.

The name was changed the following year to Grimsby Town. In 1880 the club purchased land at Clee Park which was to become their ground until 1889 when they relocated to Abbey Park, before moving again in 1899 to their present home, Blundell Park - named after Peter Blundell, whose money enabled Sidney Sussex College to buy the land in 1616. 

Grimsby dropped out of the Football League in 2010, the first time in 100 years, where they would remain winning the 2015/16 season play-off final against Forest Green Rovers. Two quickfire goals from Omar Bogle before half-time and Nathan Arnold's late strike gave the Mariners a 3-1 win.

Grimsby's first season back in the EFL went smoothly, with the Mariners finishing in 14th place, just 8 points outside the play-off places. Omar Bogles' 19 goals would earn him a move to Wigan Athletic.

Season so far:

Grimsby have experienced a tough second season back in the EFL, currently sitting in 18th place, but with a 9 point buffer over the relegation places. 

The Mariners parted company with manager Russel Slade on February 11 after a run of 12 matches without a win, and are currently under the watch of Paul Wilkinson as caretaker-manager.

Ones to watch:

Jamile Matt

The 27-year-old striker joined Grimsby Town from Blackpool on a season-long loan deal at the end of August. Jamile will be known to Grecians for his time at rivals Plymouth Argyle, where he scored 7 times in 14 appearances, including at St James Park in City's 2-1 victory in the 2015/16 season.

Mitch Rose

The younger brother of Spurs' Danny, is the Mariners second highest scorer this season, netting five times from his holding-midfield position. He spent time with Sheffield Wednesday and Rotherham United as a youth player and joined Grimsby in the summer.

Last time out:

City have already faced Grimsby at St James Park back in October. The Grecians won the match 2-0, thanks to goals from Jayden Stockley and Liam McAlinden. The result sparked a run of six straight wins at the Park. 

The last time the teams faced at Blundell Park, City took all three points back to Devon with a comanding and comfortable 3-0 win thanks to goals from the now-departed Reuben Reid, David Wheeler and Ollie Watkins. The win was again part of a six-match winning streak. 

The match is mostly remembered for Ollie Wakins sublime effort. The attacking-midfielder picked up the ball outside the box, tricked his way past a couple of challenges and curled a shot into the bottom corner.

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