REPORT | Town hit seven past Slough in Cup win

Grimsby Town hit seven goals to beat Slough Town at the second time of asking and set up an Emirates FA Cup second round meeting with Oxford United.

After coming from behind to secure a draw in the original tie in Berkshire, the Mariners raced into a 2-0 lead through Rekeil Pyke and Danny Rose to take control of this replay at Blundell Park.

But National League South Slough were not about to go out of the competition without a fight and Tyrece Dyce headed home from a corner before David Ogbonna levelled the scores.

Pyke’s second of the night gave Town the advantage back before half-time though and Arthur Gnahoua restored the two-goal cushion after the break.

Substitute Alex Hunt put the result beyond doubt when he made it 5-2 and as Slough tired towards the end of what had been a brave performance by the sixth tier outfit, Gnahoua’s second of the night and a Jamie Andrews header added extra gloss to the scoreline.

It meant Town reached the next round in style, as well as building further momentum under the interim management of Ben Davies and Shaun Pearson.

Three changes were made to the Grimsby team that began Saturday’s Sky Bet League Two home victory over Morecambe, with Luke Waterfall, Danny Amos and Gnahoua coming in for Harvey Rodgers, Anthony Glennon and Otis Khan.

Harvey Cartwright started in goal, with Mullarkey, Waterfall, Niall Maher and Amos forming the defence.  Gavan Holohan, Kieran Green and Andrews made up an unchanged midfield, while Gnahoua and Pyke lined up either side of Rose in attack.

Glennon and Rodgers were both named on the bench, along with Jake Eastwood, Callum Ainley, Donovan Wilson, Hunt, Cameron Gardner, Jamie Bramwell and Kamil Conteh.

Slough made two changes from the team which started when the teams met at Arbour Park, with Ogbonna and Mickel Platt preferred to Leon Chambers-Parillon and George Alexander.

Town, attacking the Pontoon Stand end, had the first opening of the game on four minutes, with Gnahoua cutting inside from the right and hitting a shot from 25 yards which was caught by goalkeeper Rohan Luthra.

A foul by Green then gave the away side a free kick in a central position but player-manager Scott Davies’ 30-yard effort flew high over the bar.

The Mariners opened the scoring soon afterwards, when a strike from Gnahoua was blocked and the ball fell for PYKE, who controlled it and fired past Luthra.

Slough were given a free kick on the halfway line when a shirt-pull by Waterfall on Platt was spotted by the referee but before it was taken, the visitors were forced into making the first substitution of the evening as the injured Temi Eweka was replaced by Chambers-Parillon.

After a brief spell of pressure from the free kick, Town regained control of the game and they won a corner on the right following Gnahoua’s efforts to chase the ball down.  From the flag-kick, the hosts’ advantage was doubled as Maher headed Amos’ delivery on for ROSE to find the net at the far post.

Maher headed wide from an Amos free kick as the home side went in search of a third goal, before Chambers-Parillon went close to halving the deficit when his deflected strike from 25 yards looped onto the roof of the net.

And from the resulting corner, the visitors were back in the contest when the ball was floated towards the far post and DYCE met it to head past Cartwright for 2-1.

Waterfall headed wide from a corner at the other end, then a foul on Rose led to a Town free kick on the left, which was headed off-target by Maher.

Rose saw a shot blocked after a low Mullarkey cross from the right, before Andrews forced Luthra into action to stop an effort from the edge of the penalty area.

A low cross was comfortably gathered by Cartwright to end a Slough attack, then Dyce was shown the first yellow card of the evening for bringing Gnahoua down.

Town had another corner on the half-hour when a powerful strike by Green took a deflection and after the flag-kick was not fully dealt with, Amos curled a shot wide.

Gnahoua was booked after catching Matt Lench with a high boot but the midfielder’s free kick from the left was caught by Cartwright.

An Andrews cross proved to be just out of Pyke’s reach as Town kept looking for a third goal but soon afterwards, they were caught out at the other end when the away side levelled the scores.  Goddard got down the left and pulled the ball back for OGBONNA, who capitalised on some poor defending to get to it first and slot it into the net.

Goddard went close to putting the visitors ahead on 39 minutes as he went on a run down the left before cutting into the box and hitting a curling shot which took a deflection off Maher to go just past the far post.

A Town corner at the other end led to a Rose volley being blocked for another one.  This time, a low effort from Pyke was well blocked and a follow-up shot by Holohan went over the bar.

Keeper Luthra had to be alert to get a snap-shot from Gnahoua away for a corner a minute before the break and from it, Town grabbed their lead back when the ball from the flag was flicked on for PYKE to head home at the far post.

The fourth official signalled for a minimum of five added minutes at the end of what had been an entertaining and high-scoring first half.

And with no further chances coming before the half-time whistle, the Mariners retained the advantage at the interval.


No further substitutions were made by either side before the restart and Slough were first to threaten when a free kick from the right was punched by Cartwright as far as Platt, whose volley was blocked.

Town looked set to stretch their lead when Andrews slid a great ball through the middle for Pyke but the offside flag went up against the striker to deny him a hat-trick.

A free kick from Goddard on the away left caused problems as the Mariners struggled to get the ball away from danger, although it was eventually scrambled out for a corner and the ball from the flag was headed over the bar for a goal kick.

Amos was booked for bringing Ogbonna down as the attacker made good progress through the middle.  Cartwright got to the resulting free kick first but again, his punch went straight to an attacker and Town had Rose to thank after he headed Goddard’s looping effort off the line.

Glennon replaced Amos at left-back in Grimsby’s first change on 55 minutes and another substitution was made six minutes later, with Alexander replacing Platt in the sky blue of Slough.

Wilson came on for Holohan with 64 minutes on the clock and seconds later, Town had their two-goal cushion back as GNAHOUA worked an opening inside the box and drilled a low shot past Luthra at his near post.

A shot from Gnahoua was blocked after Wilson pulled the ball back from the left, before a Mullarkey cross was headed behind for a corner by Josh Jackman.  Gnahoua played the ball short from the flag for Glennon, whose cross was headed away at the near post.

Cartwright did well to race off his line and dive at the feet of Alexander at the other end after the striker had run onto an excellent through-ball.

Dominic Hutchinson, Jamal Prosper and Nathan Minhas replaced Chambers-Parillon, Davies and Godard in a triple-substitution for the visitors, who now had 20 minutes to score two goals and keep their cup run going.

Town responded with three substitutions of their own, sending Hunt, Conteh and Ainley on for Rose, Green and Pyke.

Ainley linked up with Glennon soon afterwards and the left-back picked Hunt out with a cross to the edge of the box but his volley was just wide.

The former Sheffield Wednesday midfielder was not to be denied for much longer though, as Gnahoua held the ball up inside the box before passing to HUNT, who made no mistake with a low shot which beat keeper Luthra and found the net.

Town were now in full control and they added a sixth goal on 84 minutes.  Ainley took the ball forward and slid it through for GNAHOUA to finish for his second of the game.

Two minutes later, it was seven for the Mariners and this time, Hunt was the provider as he chipped a perfect cross for ANDREWS to nod into the net from close range.

Five added minutes were played at the end of the game before Town’s place in the second round was confirmed and despite a heavy defeat, Slough’s players took the acclaim of their 118 travelling supporters.

The Mariners will travel to Oxford United for their second round clash on the first weekend in December but before that, attention switches back to the league and Saturday’s trip to Forest Green Rovers.



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