Date:Thursday October 9 2008
This Saturday, unbeaten Wycombe Wanderers travel to Blundell Park to take on Grimsby Town in a League Two fixture.
Grimsby have had a very poor start to their League Two campaign and would be in last place, were it not for the points deductions imposed on Luton, Rotherham and Bournemouth.
The Mariners are yet to win in the league and have only 3 points to their name. They have drawn with Rochdale, Lincoln and Morecambe, but have suffered defeats at the hands of Brentford, Chesterfield, Gillingham, Chester, Barnet and Rotherham.
Grimsby have only scored 4 goals, but have conceded 18 times. Another point to note is that they have only scored once in their four home league games so far this season.
Depressing stats for Mariners' fans, but hope has been restored by this week's appointment of Mike Newell as their new manager. Newell has a good track record managing in the lower leagues, having achieved promotions with Hartlepool in 2003 and Luton Town in 2005.
Saturday will be Newell's first league game since taking charge and to mark the occasion, the Mariners have reduced ticket prices in the hope of attracting a bigger crowd.
The undefeated Chairboys sit at the top of the table with 21 points, courtesy of 6 wins and 3 draws.
With the meanest defence in the league, Wycombe have only conceded 3 goals in their nine league games played so far, and have kept a clean sheet in every away game this season. The Chairboys have 11 league goals to their name.
So there you have it, Grimsby can't score at home and Wycombe don't concede away. Grimsby haven't won and Wycombe haven't lost. On paper, this game looks like it should be a great opportunity for The Wanderers to notch up another three points. However, fate has conspired to make this game a potential banana skin for Peter Taylor's team.
The Blues were thrashed 7-0 at home by Shrewsbury in the Johnstone's Paint Trophy on Tuesday evening. It may have been a weakened team, but the performance was so bad that confidence must have taken a real knock. At least five of the players who featured in the thrashing will be playing against the Mariners and Blues' fans will be hoping that they can put it behind them and pick themselves up quickly.
Then there is the new-manager factor. The Grimsby players will be all out to impress their new boss and the larger than usual home crowd will no doubt be freshly motivated to really get behind their team.
Wycombe will need to show all their character to recover from Tuesday's disappointment and take something from this tricky game.
The Wanderers have reported no fresh injury problems. Bloomfield and Hunt are still out and Peter Taylor has said Gary Holt is another week away from being fit enough to start.
Grimsby 1 Wycombe 1
Date:Thursday October 9 2008
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