Craig Priest & Emily Sykes write....
As 2012 comes to an end we have one more game to slot in, subject to a pitch inspection at 10.30am. Never have I said this before but in all honesty, I’d love it tomorrow if the headline read ‘Game Off’
It may seem like a negative thing to say but we honestly think given the weather and the form of both teams a postponement would do Mansfield the world of good. The match against Alfreton on Boxing Day is certainly one we want to forget, the performance of some players was disappointing and we don’t think a match against the league leaders is the best way to put things right, another few days on the training pitch followed by the return match with Alfreton is the best way to re-focus.
Naturally revenge is needed on Grimsby too following the game at Blundell Park earlier in the season but you have to look at our approach and there’s – we are distracted and, as proved Boxing Day, unfocussed, where as Grimsby are on fire with one defeat in eight games and three back to back wins. Never have we ever wanted to miss a game but we think our situation at the moment may suit a postponement, giving Paul Cox extra time to address the problems from Boxing Day and find our feet again.
Should the game pass the inspection then fine, it’s a challenge Mansfield have to rise too – the match will pit the best away team and the best home team against each other, something will give.
The obvious discussion has been about selection, one change will be needed with Ritchie Sutton suspended but what about elsewhere – Exodus Geohaghon for instance was awful against Alfreton and for us cost us the game, in which case do you recall Pilkington, Jones or Tafazolli or do you bring Thompson into centre half move Beevers to right back and put Junior Daniel back in at left back?
We don’t have too many complaints about the midfield or front line, but what about bringing in a character that could pull the strings, as the game went on against Alfreton there seemed no desire from any individual to try and rescue at least a point – that cannot continue.
So now we play the waiting game, will it be on or will it be off – whatever happens let’s just hope something positive can take us into 2013.
LAST TIME WE MET
As eluded to earlier, the last meeting between these sides didn’t end well for Mansfield. Hosts Grimsby romped past pathetic Mansfield as the Mariners ran out 4-1 winners at Blundell Park. Gary Roberts’s dismissal didn’t aid the Stags cause nor did Matt Rhead’s late header.
The sides first met in 1951 and there have been 45 meetings between the pair so far, however in terms of goals you can’t separate the pair as they currently sit on 65 a piece. At the One Call Stadium Stags have been victorious 11 times which included a 2-1 victory in October last year.
Ritchie Sutton is set to serve a one match ban after collecting his fifth yellow card of the season on Wednesday; this could see a recall for John Thompson at right back whilst Ryan Tafazolli and Adam Murray should also be available for selection.
Should the match pass it’s 10:30am pitch inspection then you can catch regular updates throughout the afternoon from 2pm via our MM-Live page, due to the Christmas schedule we cannot guarantee coverage will be on Takeover 106.9.
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