Darren Mansaram (or Flash as he is better off known) scored one of the best goals he had ever scored in his short career. Only eighteen years of age, but an up and coming star of the future hit the sweetest of shots to keep Grimsby Town in the F. A Cup. Grimsby was playing Burnley in the third round of the F. A Cup for a place in the fourth round maybe to face one of the premiership big boys. It was a miserable day with snow coming down in buckets. The previous league match at Grimsby was called off because of a waterlogged pitch so this match was lucky to go ahead.
The eighteen year old from Doncaster was named in the starting eleven to face the team they had beat 6-5 two months previously. With the ground quickly filling up, the players came out of the dressing room onto the pitch for a warm up. Every Grimsby player applauded the Grimsby fans for their support and every person in the crowd applauded back. The team started their warm-up and there, right in the middle was Darren Mansaram. This was to be his first F. A. Cup match of his career and it was definitely going to be one to remember.
Kick Off was approaching quickly and the snow seemed to have cleared, so the referee gave to ‘all clear’ for the match to go on. The ground was rather full as the players came out of the tunnel, the Grimsby faithful applauded their team and the Burnley faithful applauded theirs. The officials called in the two captains to determine who was to kick off. It was to be Grimsby to kick off left to right towards the away end. Flash and David ‘Digger’ Soames to kick off, playing the ball back to Stuart Campbell who in turn plays it to player/manager Paul Groves.
Groves loses out to Paul Weller who plays a first time ball to Arthur Gnohere. He hits a long ball over the top of the Grimsby defence, Georges Santos looks over at the linesman to see if there is an off-side, Robbie Blake chases it down, takes it around the Grimsby keeper, Danny Coyne, and hits a shot which smacks the upright. The Grimsby defence can’t clear it, Tony Grant comes steaming in and whacks the ball straight over the Pontoon. The town fans cheer with sheer delight as they watch the ball disappear. Grant got right under the ball there.
Danny Coyne to take the goal kick, it’s a brilliant kick which Stacey Coldicott heads on straight for ‘Digger’ Soames who chases it down and hits a first time shot right into the Burnley keeper’s arms. A great chance for Grimsby turned into a wasted opportunity. Marlon Beresford clears the ball for Burnley, Georges Santos heads the ball clear. It’s pumped straight back into the box by Mark McGregor; Coyne comes flying out of his goal and gathers the ball comfortably. He rolls it out to Gallimore who plays a first time ball to Ford. Ford to Santos, up to Cooke who controls the ball well.
Cooke has the ability to take people on from here. Branch and Gnohere quickly close Cooke down. Cooke decides to dribble the ball. He’s took it past Branch, skips past the challenge from Gnohere. It’s three on two for Grimsby here, what can Cooke do? Who can he pick out? It’s a great ball behind Cox. Digger Soames is onto it. One on one with Marlon Beresford. Beresford makes himself as big as possible, Digger slides the ball underneath Beresford and just the wrong side of the post. The Burnley supporters look happy to see the ball slide the wrong side of the upright.
Great play by Grimsby, deserved a goal there. Beresford to take the goal kick. He’s taking his time with it to slow down the flow of play. Super goal kick headed away by McDermott, headed on by Groves. Cleared by McGregor, Ian Moore controls the ball. Forty yards out, dribbles the ball around Coldicott, Groves comes steaming in. Moore skips past the challenge from Groves, slides a ball around the back of the Grimsby defence, Alan Moore is onto it. Just Coyne to beat. SUPER GOAL from Alan Moore, 1-0 Burnley. Coyne is absolutely furious with his defence. The Burnley fans jump up as overjoyed as Moore himself.
Flash to precede the match with the kick off. He plays the ball to Digger who picks out Cooke with a pin-point pass. Cooke, back to McDermott. McDermott brings the ball in-field, Santos goes the opposite way. Great play here from Grimsby. Santos plays a neat one-two with Cooke, Santos keeps going. He sees Flash in space and plays a tidy ball around the back of the Burnley defence. Flash runs onto it. Cox comes flying in with the challenge. Flash neatly tucks the ball between Cox’s legs. This is great build-up play from Mansaram. The town faithful are on their feet, urging Flash on.
He spots Digger making his way into the box. Superb ball straight to the head of Digger Soames, Just wide, if anything deserved a goal that certainly did. Beresford to resume play, just a short kick out to Cox, who turns and controls well. Tony Grant receives the ball at half way. Grant runs with the ball, past Groves, past Santos. One on One with Coyne. The shot deflects off Coyne’s legs straight to WELLER. 2-0 to Burnley who I dare say justify this lead. Player/Manager Groves can’t believe that his side are 2-0 down to the team they beat 6-5. Where on earth was the Grimsby defence there?
Digger to kick off for Town as they look to come back from 2-0 down to beat this Burnley side. Coldicott in possession of the ball for Town. Groves takes over and plays it to Cooke. Cooke attempts to play a cross-field ball to Gallimore, which finds its intended target. Gallimore plays a neat one-two with Santos. Gallimore to Campbell, who plays a first time ball to Stacy Coldicott. Town are keeping possession well here. Coldicott in midfield plays the ball back to Ford. Ford leaves it for Coyne, who hits the ball first time to out to McDermott. McDermott turns and sees Cooke in space.
Cooke receives the ball at half-way. He’s got time and space to run with the ball here. Cooke takes the ball on, Gnohere comes across. Cooke skips past the challenge from Gnohere. The crowd urges Cooke on. Cooke comes in-field, he’s got time to cross a ball in. It’s a superb ball onto the head of Mansaram. It smacks the upright and bounces out. Groves has a shot, which is blocked by Branch. Coldicott hits a shot which is saved by Beresford. What a goalmouth scramble. Campbell hits a screamer which is blocked on the line by Cox. Finally Ian Moore clears the ball for Burnley and the defence can breathe again.
Grimsby are really trying to get back into the match. Graham Rodger the assistant manager screams instructions to the captain McDermott and to player-manager Paul Groves. For the time being it is Burnley in the lead and Burnley in possession with Papadopoulos. This is his first real touch in this exciting and productive first half. Thirty Seven minutes in and its Grimsby Town 0, Burnley 2. Papadopoulos with a one-two with Grant. Papadopoulos keeps going and slides a ball through the middle of the defence. Alan Moore is chasing the ball down, Coyne comes flying out of his goal. Moore has to get past Santos first.
He’s done that successfully. He’s one on one with Coyne. Coyne still flying from his goal line, collects the ball comfortable. The danger is over for Grimsby. Burnley are to make a substitution here, It’s going to be Paul Weller to leave the field of play to be replaced by Paul Cook. Grimsby will be happy to hear the referee’s whistle for half time. There is two minutes plus stoppage time left. McDermott is in possession for Grimsby. He’s trying to slow things down here. He plays it back to Coyne, Coyne controls the ball and takes his time before playing the ball to Gallimore.
The fourth official holds up the electronic board. He’s indicated one added on minute. Gallimore to Georges Santos straight to Groves. Groves hits a ball over the top of the Burnley defence, Digger chases after it. Last chance for Grimsby. Digger has two defenders to beat. Cox and Gnohere. He beats Cox comfortably, only Gnohere to beat. Gnohere takes the ball off Digger and pumps a ball up-field. The Burnley crowd breath a sigh of relief. The referee blows for half time. What an exciting, action-packed first half, more of the same is expected in the second.
Burnley are two goals up here against a weak Grimsby side compared to the one almost two months ago. Well, Grimsby have had the most possession but it’s Burnley who have got the rewards for their hard work. At half time here at Blundell Park, it’s Grimsby Town nil Burnley two. Half time entertainment here at Blundell Park today with to local junior sides are playing in a mini tournament. I wonder what is going on in both changing rooms, do you? Well wonder no more because in both changing rooms we have installed microphone camera’s, so off to the home changing room to get an idea of the atmosphere in there. What a pathetic performance you lot are showing, absolutely pathetic’ Graham Rodger, the assistant manager, was yelling at his players.
‘Either buck your ideas up or some of you are going to be put on the transfer list’ he continued. Ok, I think we are getting the point that the Town assistant manager is appalled with the first half performance of the mariners. Off to the away dressing room we go. I presume it’s a better atmosphere in there. ‘E. I. E. I. O through the F. A Cup we go, when we get Man United, this is what we’ll sing. We are Burnley, we are Burnley, Ternant is our king’
Wow, they are really enjoying today. Grimsby Town are coming out for the second half. Grimsby Town look fired up for a tense and nerve wracking forty-five minutes for the Grimsby Town supporters. There is no sign of Burnley yet. I can tell you there have been no substitutions during half time. Papadopoulos and Blake to get this second half under way. Blake back to Grant who gives the ball to Cook. Cook plays a neat one-two with Branch, Cook continues down this left hand touchline. He comes in-field and gives the ball to Alan Moore who loses out to Groves.
Groves, who is just inside his own half, plays the ball back to Santos who kicks it first time to Gallimore. Santos looks like he has injured himself but play continues with Gallimore. Gallimore to Campbell. An over-hit pass there from Gallimore which Campbell controls brilliantly. He turns, looks up and sees Digger in Space. Campbell decides to take the ball on himself. Santos is signalling to the bench that he wants to come off. Campbell to Mansaram. Mansaram to ‘Digger’ Soames. Soames tricks the defender into going one way and he goes the other. Excellent build up play from Grimsby Town.
Digger sends in a left footed cross which falls onto the head of Coldicott. Super header from Coldicott smacks the bar, Terry Cooke comes flying in and sails the ball straight into the stand. Beresford takes his time in retrieving the ball from the stand containing Grimsby supporters. Grimsby Town to make a substitution here. It’s going to be Steve Chettle coming on for Georges Santos. Beresford to resume play from the goal kick, plays a ball up-field trying to find Alan Moore. The ball doesn’t reach him but is headed away by Groves. Coldicott picks it up on half way, controlled well.
He picks out Cooke with a precise pass. What a good game Cooke and Coldicott are having. Cooke on the right wing plays the ball to Mansaram who gives the ball back to Cooke. Great play from Grimsby Town, the crowd are really getting behind Grimsby. Cooke travels further with the ball. There is only ‘Digger’ Soames in the box. Cooke decides to shoot himself. It’s a real pile driver of a shot that Beresford can only tip behind for a corner. The crowd are buzzing with excitement. Campbell to take the corner for Grimsby. There are six in the area for Grimsby including Cooke, Mansaram and Chettle.
The ball is driven into the area to Cooke who stumbles under a challenge from Cox, Burnley manage to clear the ball. The referee blows his whistle, the crowd are astonished to hear the whistle, and the players are totally astounded to hear it. The referee points to the penalty spot, he’s awarded a penalty to Grimsby Town, possibly for the slight challenge on Cooke, we’ll never know. Cooke has got up and is ready to take the penalty himself. He puts the ball on the spot, this to make it two-one. The crowd are trying their best to put off the Burnley keeper. It’s Cooke against Beresford.
Cooke takes a run up and belts the ball. GOAL. Grimsby Town are back into this game thanks to a dubious decision by the referee. At Blundell Park, Cleethorpes its Grimsby Town One, Burnley Two. Burnley are absolutely furious with the decision but ‘The show must go on’. Stan Ternant, the Burnley manager, is angry at the officials, he’s having a right go at the fourth official. The referee sees it. He’s walking over. He’s talking to the official. He’s going over to Stan. The referee has sent him away from the dugout. I presume that is for the abuse he was giving the fourth official.
He will certainly be complaining about these officials to the F. A. Burnley to resume play from the centre circle. Papadopoulos plays the ball back to back who spots Grant running down the left touchline. Brilliant ball straight to the feet of Grant who loses out to McDermott. McDermott plays a long cross-field ball to Campbell who turns well. Grimsby look like they are going to make a substitution, Chris Thompson is warming up on the touchline. Groves receives the ball at half way and takes his time before playing a ball back to Santos. Santos to Gallimore on this left touchline.
Thompson is ready to come on when the ball goes out of play. Gallimore hits a long ball up to Cooke who mis-controls and the ball rolls over the line for a Burnley throw-in. It’s going to be a double substitution for Grimsby Town. The electronic board goes up, it’s going to be 14 Chris Thompson for 20 David Soames and 12 Jonathan Rowan replacing 2 John McDermott. Burnley to take the throw-in with Branch. Gnohere receives the ball who gives it to Cox. Up-field straight to Paul Cook. Cook runs with the ball, trying to take on the Grimsby defence by himself.
He’s past Groves, skips past the challenge from Ford and rides the challenge from Santos. Only Coyne to beat. Cook tries to slide the ball underneath Coyne. He’s done that successfully. Coyne got a touch, the ball is rolling towards the line, Santos is trying to get back. What a brilliant clearance off the line from Santos. Grimsby are straight on the attack with Cooke on the ball. Cooke hits a ball up-field to Mansaram. Great touch to control the ball. Mansaram brings the ball out left, he’s got support from the packed Grimsby midfield. He’s turned brilliantly, he’s going back to where he started.
He turns well again and strikes a left footed shot. GOAL, wow what a superb shot straight past the helpless Beresford. There was nothing the goal keeper could do there. After 88 minutes, it’s Grimsby Town 2 Burnley 2. Burnley are devastated by that, that they decide to make an attacking substitution. Dimitrios Papadopoulos is coming off to be replaced by Gordon Armstrong. The fourth official holds up the board and indicates two minutes added time. The ninety minutes are up, Grimsby are under a lot of pressure from the Burnley attack. The referee blows his whistle for full time, it’s finished Grimsby Town 2 Burnley 2.