Cod Almighty | Match Report
by Tony Butcher
3 February 2019
Grimsby Town 3 Newport County 0
Well Grimsby was having trouble what a sad, sad story, we needed some new players to restore our former glory. Where, oh where will they be?
It's a bitter clear day for you and me, but it's springtime for Öhman and Ring. Will it be winter for Amond and Matt?
Town lined up in 5-3-2 formation as follows: Russell, Hendrie, Hall-Johnson, Ohman, Collins, Ring, Embleton, Hessenthaler, Woolford, Thomas and Cook. The substitutes were Grayson, Whitmore, Welsh, Clifton, Vernam, Cardwell and Dennis. Now that's a strong set of subs for your money.
It's goodbye to Mitch, we know he's alright, but hello to Dennis the Menace, who we know is just right. You don’t have to go all the way to Memphis for your Mariner, or Uppsala for your upskilling. We're trading a 90 per cent success rate with penalties for 100%, and removing Rose's penchant for sub-Summerfieldian flakery just outside the Town penalty area. The only way is up.
On a rugby pitch Town are playing a rugby team. They might be giants, but they may just be windmills in your mind. Amber Amondless but Matted, do I have to say any more?
Don’t be stupid, be a smarty, come and join Jolley's party.
First half: They’ll need a crane
The Amberites kicked off towards the Pontoon and Town didn't touch the ball for a whole English minute. Slip-sliding away on tufted crusts of gloop, a Town corner that exists statistically but not memorably, whatever will be, will be. Matt mugging and shrugging, free kicks flowing. To them.
It's a set piece lottery. Heads! We win.
Welsh wiffling and piffling, Keanununu Marsh-Brown swiped and Russell scooped low and right.
Free kicks flowing. To them. Heads! We win.
A cheeky Town throw-in and Cook almost sneaked in near their post in a moment of almostness which is lost in the fog of big data. Newport nicked and knocked and Russell flipped a shinned cross over the bar as Matt lurked. The corner was pulled back to the unmarked Keanununu on the edge of the penalty area. Collins took the shuttle bus to work to magnificently body-block. Bimbles were bombled, heads were tennised, Kennedy shouldered the ball up on the edge of the six-yard box, spun and noodled a header towards the top left corner of the goal from five yards. Russell watched, waited, shuffled to his left and punched aside from under the bar.
Steady on, they've had their 15 minutes of fame. They managed to cope with the wall of silence.
A niddle of naught at the dreg end of the Frozen Horsebeer Stand. A Town chuck-in was chucked in as Hall-Johnson sped up from the rear to infiltrate and discombobulate. Seeds sown for a south Walian groan as Cook turned and scraped lowly and slowly through limp legs, across the face of goal and into the bottom right corner.
Well, that was a surprise. But a nice one, Cyril, let's have another one.
Ambers annoyed, but Town buoyed, toying with the visibly deflating balloons. Woolford caressed a pass down the centre; Cook turned and burned lowly straight to Townsend. Oooh, nice, one-touch passing and moving, moving and passing, triangles of training routines, tipping up and across the pitch. Woolford waffled in Cookian fashion lowly to Townsend.
Russell drop-kick passing, Hendrie and RHJ raiding and roaming. The ice is slow breaking, here comes some fun
Newport sent three subs up the touchline to 'warm up' and accidentally be in position to get the ball back for quick throw-ins. Welsh was immediately sent up the line to man-mark them. He did, magnificently; what a pro. It's a squad game these days.
Russell drop-kick passing, Hendrie and RHJ raiding and roaming. The ice is slow breaking, here comes some fun.
Town, Town, Town teasing, pleasing, easing up the left. A Ring cross was half cleared. Embleton turned and turned and turned again Dick Whittington, finally tickling back to Woolford, who fizzled lowly through the thicket. The keeper sprung low and right to fingertip aside for a Town corner.
There were amber moments, truly there were. The Hess lamped one off near the line after a near-post head-graze at a corner. Hessenthaler and Woolford bounced off Big Bad Bakinson as he barged straight down the middle. With the remnants of the defence retreating, Kennedy passed a shot lowly, Russell scooped aside rightly and RHJ swept away the broken china.
A minute to go with the flow and Town triangulated a throw down at the dreg point beyond the Frozen Horsebeer Stand. Hendrie chucked and ducked through a gap, hitting the turf after Keanununununu was a nudging ninny.
Is there time for Mitch to get back up the A46?
Thomas strode forward and watched Townsend leave Town on the 8:21. With the keeper already heading west Thomas passed the ball low to the keeper's left and into the keeper's waiting arms. And in a bound we were free to chunter.
Football 1, rugby 0.
Second half: Lucky ball and chain
Neither team made any changes at half time.
Spaces everywhere. End to end, side to side, up and under. The Hess dabbled and was dispossessed by Big Bad Bakinson. Kennedy haunted the sideboard and clumped a duffer straight at Russell. Big balls and big blocks. Heads! We win.
Town possession, possession, possession and Embleton finally flaked over. Labadie strong-armed Hendrie, a pastel finger wagged. Heads! We win.
A Town throw-in under the Police Box. A shuffle, a trick, a flick and the ball boombled to amber socks. Numpty Neufville cleared against the persistent Hall-Johnson, who carried on regardless, ignoring a nip and tuck to stay upright and consider his options. RHJ carefully caressed to the unmarked Cook, in the centre of the centre of the penalty area, who swept in off plunging, lunging amber chests.
At this Newport sent on their not-so-secret weapon. At this score the Town fans felt relaxed enough to clap on Amond, to smother with love, to kill off his danger with kindness. All the best for Tuesday, Pádraig, take it easy, don't get injured for the big match.
Passing. Purring. Football. The sort we like, the sort we used to do all those years ago.
A Town corner outwardly curled, two Amberites tugged and mugged Öhman, who dived forward on his knees to thumple a header straight at the keeper. The Hess wiggled away down the touchline to the bye-line, whipping lowly to the near post. Thomas arced around and swept around the angle of post and bar. Townsend kicked away as Embleton sneaked through the cheesecloth.
Halfway through the half we could relax, as Clifton replaced Embleton to release the Woolfman from his shackles. Town without a Harry on the pitch is like listening to the Beatles with earmuffs.
Whitmore came on for RHJ, who'd been totally cool, but with Newport throwing up more, Town just needed bigger, badder dudes in the fist fight
An amber overload on their right, a cross straight in the centre, confusion as bodies collided but RHJ hooked away the bouncing ball inside the six-yard area. And then Whitmore came on for RHJ, who'd been totally cool, but with Newport throwing up more, Town just needed bigger, badder dudes in the fist fight.
As Ambers advanced, Little Harry charged down and charged away deep into the Newport half. The Old Pipe cleverly clattered Clifton. A free kick, a yellow card. Ring hit it flat and deeply from the shadows of the Frozen Horsebeer Stand. Collins imposed himself beyond the far post to bethunkle downwardly. Townsend leapt across to finger-flip aside, even though the ball was going wide. The Hess coiled the corner to the penalty spot; Whitmore stooped and steered a header; Townsend leapt left and clawed aside superbly.
With ten minutes left Dennis came on to menace the ragged Amberites, replacing Thomas.
And still Newport tried. What's the point? Big booming balls, big booming heads away. An Exile alone beyond the far post heading back into the masses in the middle. Whitmore cleared acely. You need a big bad dude now and again, especially down in Cowleyland.
Moments of interest, dissolving in the ether. Cook and Dennis: two little pests who'll cause much unrest with their zest for strife. Dennis's movement off the ball was illuminating and enticing as he drifted into spaces. Mmmmm.
Under the Frozen Horsebeer Stand a succession of long and short Town triangles, Town swarming forward to be warming our toes with good old-fashioned football. Cook tucked in and tickled forward, Little Harry back-heeled, Woolford ran on a la Cockerill and crashed a cross lowly. Demetriou stretched towards the net as Townsend plunged lowly to intercept and Dennis waited alone, beyond, to poke in. Alas, the beautiful montage of Marinerball was destroyed by the clodhopping Demetriou sliding the ball in himself. It could have been a contender for goal of the season, but was simply the end of this match, and, maybe, the first glimpse of the start of something.
Three minutes were added. There is no need to waste time waffling to fill this three-minute void – the game was over. You can relax and dream of a better future.
Next season is looking good already.