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Match Previews

Under-18s preview: Grimsby Town (H)

23 April 2021

The Iron's Under-18s continue their Merit League campaign this Saturday as they host their Grimsby Town counterparts (10.30am kick-off).

Please note, in line with the current EFL COVID-19 guidelines, no spectators are permitted at these games.


After a four-week break with no fixtures, United commenced their Merit League fixtures with an away game at league leaders Notts County, a venue where they came from 3-0 down to win 4-3 in the league a couple of months ago. A youthful side lost 2-0 this time though.

This is the side's second of a four-game extension to the season, but despite finishing as runners-up in the regular campaign, the team aren't guaranteed to end the league in second position, with the results from the Merit League being added to the existing standings. The top five are currently playing each other once more and the bottom five playing each other once more.

The league split can be likened to the one in the Scottish Premier League, with the league effectively in two halves for the final few weeks of the season.

The Iron came into the Merit League off the back of back-to-back wins over Huddersfield Town, prior to losing against the Magpies. They won 3-1 away from home with Joey Dawson (two) and Dan Gallimore netting, while Dawson added another brace in the return fixture, with Cam Wilson also netting in the 3-2 win.

Our opponents were in pole position to win the league at one stage having not lost at all in the season until late February, but a backlog of fixtures eventually caught up with the side as they lost three games in a row, including a vital match against the eventual winners of the league in the regular season, Notts County.

The two sides have already met three times this season, with the Mariners winning each time. The first meeting was at Blundell Park in the FA Youth Cup, which Grimsby won 2-0, while Patrick Virgo netted in the away league fixture, although the Iron were edged out controversially 2-1, despite an equaliser being ruled out for offside when the flag should have remained down.

The home league meeting saw the Mariners win convincingly as they notched five goals in a horrendous 10-minute spell to win 7-2, with the Iron down to the bare bones on the day.

Grimsby come into the fixture off-the-back off a 1-1 draw away at Burton Albion.


There were just two second year scholars in the side last time out with goalkeeper Ben Crosher and Dan Gallimore the only two included.

Gallimore was pushed back to central defence instead of his usual midfield role in the game in the absence of Oliver Kemp.

Harry Baker remains out with a knee injury, Patrick Virgo continues to miss out with a hamstring problem while it is expected the Iron will continue to go with their younger players coming through.

LAST TIME OUT (L0-2 v Notts County - Youth Alliance Merit League)

IRON: Crosher, Moore, Gallimore, Lobley, Lewis, Abraham, Cribb, Moore-Billam (Trialist A, 68), Franklin, Strouther (Sellers-Fleming, 46), Poulter.

IRON SUBS NOT USED: Balme, Pike, Elliott-Bell.


Bradford City 0-3 Lincoln City
Burton Albion 1-1 Grimsby Town
Huddersfield Town 2-0 Doncaster Rovers


Huddersfield Town v Bradford City (11am)
Mansfield Town v Lincoln City (11am)


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