Stevenage Preview

Town take on Stevenage on Good Friday (3pm) as they face the first of four remaining home games that could very well define their season.

With the Mariners now three points away from the bottom two after defeat at Coventry last weekend was followed up by Chesterfield’s victory against Notts County the next day, it is important that they try to return to winning ways quickly.

The four games left at Blundell Park could play a big part in that, so Michael Jolley will be targeting his first three points at the helm on Friday.

Several doubts for the Mariners

Town are likely to remain without Ben Davies, who is still recovering from a calf strain, whilst Luke Summerfield, Karleigh Osborne and Mitch Rose have returned to training but are unlikely to be ready in time.

Scott Vernon and Jamille Matt are also carrying knocks that could reduce the options up front if they fail late fitness tests, while loanee Simeon Jackson is set to return next week.

Stevenage will welcome back midfield trio Ben King, Ben Sheef and Dale Gorman from international duty but defender Joe Martin and midfielder Jack King are both nursing injuries so are doubts for the fixture.

Stevenage looking to finish it strongly under new boss

Stevenage have more or less survived relegation this season and cannot reach the play-offs either, but they will still be looking to finish the season strongly under new boss Dino Maamria.

The Tunisian replaced Darren Sarll last month to take charge of a club that he spent three separate spells with as a player.

His reign started with a 1-0 defeat to Colchester United at the weekend, so he will be hoping to pick up his first victory since taking charge.

The side have relied on both of their forwards to score over half  of their goals so far this season, with former Scunthorpe United striker Matt Godden scoring 14 goals and Danny Newton scoring 13 goals so far this campaign.

Earlier in the season

The reverse fixture between the two sides saw Stevenage win 3-1 against a ten-man Mariners side at the Broadfield Stadium.

Goals from Danny Newton, Jonathan Smith and Ben Kennedy were the difference for the home side, with Danny Collins scoring a late consolation for Town and Sam Jones also being sent off midway through the second half.

Managers in summary

Michael Jolley; “They’re a good side – they’ve had some good results this season – their front two are well-established, and work very hard. That sets them off from the top end of the pitch. Dino Maamria has gone in there as a new manager, and he’ll have his own ideas on how to set them up and much like myself, he’ll be trying to have an impact very quickly, so we expect a tough match but it’s the kind of match that we want. It’s a home match, and we want to play on the front foot and try and get the win.”

Dino Maamria: ”I know Grimsby very well from my days in the Conference and it is always a difficult place to go. They have got a decent home record, but they are joint 23rd in the form table like us. It is going to be a tough game, no doubt about it. They will be fighting for their lives and so will we, without putting pressure on the players it is just as important a game that I think we are capable of winning. I am sure they will be up for it – they are fighting for their lives like I said, but my focus is always on our players and our football club.”


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