Grimsby Town 2 Huddersfield 3 match report: Mariners sunk by cruel own-goal

Full-back turns in own goal to hand Huddersfield victory after heroic fightback by Conference side

Blundell Park

The FA Cup, losing its lustre? Not on the Lincolnshire coast it isn’t.No opposing teams were further apart than Grimsby Town of the Conference and Huddersfield Town of the Championship, but on a mistily dank winter’s afternoon made for upsets, the Mariners ensured the famous old trophy shone, well, like the scales of a freshly caught haddock.

Everything, but everything, was as it should be. Blundell Park, increasingly decrepit in its 114th year, was packed. The pitch was playable but satisfyingly soft, studs quickly exposing the dark mud beneath.

Grimsby, out-classed for 20 minutes, went ahead on a break through Ross Hannah, a player who never made it in the league. Huddersfield’s equaliser, stroked home from 25 yards by the former Manchester United trainee Oliver Norwood, oozed quality.

Shortly after the hour, and prompting the sort of euphoria which makes years of misery fo supporters worthwhile, captain Craig Disley headed the non-leaguers back in front and apparently into round four. Huddersfield’s manager, Mark Robins rang the changes, but all looked lost for the Terriers whenin the 87th minute , Grimsby’s goalkeeper James McKeown pushed Duane Holmes’ shot to Martin Paterson, and the striker who once spent 15 games on loan with Grimsby, turned the ball in.

A replay was the least Grimsby deserved, and that should have been that, but incredibly there was more to come. Deep into added time the Grimsby full-back Aswad Thomas, who had very nearly put his side 3-1 up with a header, turned Paul Dixon’s cross past his own goalkeeper, leaving the home manager, Paul Hurst, as disbelieving as the crowd as it streamed into the terraced streets that surround the ground.

“It’s hard to take, and it’s a measure of the performance that the players are genuinely disappointed,” Hurst said. “For the first 15 minutes or so it looked like being a long, hard afternoon, they have real quality in their team, but we gradually got into the game. When they equalised you’re thinking of just holding on, but then we got in front again and kept causing them problems, we made it into a real game and I was very proud.

“We have to look at this performance as a marker. If I have a pop at them for not reaching the levels I know they’re capable of, they’ll know why.”

Robins, who had shown his respect both for the competition and for opponents who had disposed of league opposition in Scunthorpe United in round one and Northampton Town in round two by picking his strongest side, did not hide his relief.

“I thought Grimsby were excellent, they put us under a lot of pressure,” he said. “We controlled large parts of the first half, but their first attack brought a goal and we became a little bit anxious.

But even after they went ahead we kept at it, we didn’t start going long and in the end managed to get the goals. I’m just pleased we’re in the hat for the next round.”

The first 20 minutes had seen Huddersfield enjoy 80 per cent  possession. The manner in which their five man midfield knocked the ball around with their opponents chasing suggested it was only a matter of time before class told, but they were caught on the break, and with three at the back could not prevent Joe Colbeck scampering down the right before Hannah turned a low cross past the Terriers’ goalkeeper Alex Smithies.

The change in momentum was remarkable. Suddenly it looked a game of equals, but nine minutes into the second half Disley tripped Adam Hammill, and Norwood struck the free-kick unerringly over the wall and beyond McKeown.

That Grimsby regained the initiative says much about their character, and when Andy Cook’s shot was deflected high into the air, Disley was on hand to nod the ball beyond Smithies. The celebrations were theatrical, but sadly for the Mariners, the drama was only just beginning.

Line-ups:

Grimsby Town (4-4-2): McKeown: Bignot, Pearson, Doig (Southwell, 90), Thomas; Disley, Thanoj (McLaughlin, 67), Colbeck, Neilson (Rodman, 83); Cook, Hannah.

Huddersfield Town (3-5-2): Smithies: Wallace, Gerrard, Smith; Dixon, Hogg (Holmes, 59), Clayton, Norwood, Hammill (Lopez, 78); Paterson, Ward (Scannell, 59).

Referee: Keith Stroud.

Man of the match: Joe Colbeck (Grimsby)

Match rating: 9/10

Life and Style
Fans line up at the AVNs, straining to capture a photo of their favourite star
life Tim Walker asks how much longer it can flesh out an existence
Life and Style
Every minute of every day, Twitter is awash with anger as we seek to let these organisations know precisely what we think of them
techWhen it comes to vitriol, no one on attracts our ire more than big businesses offering bad service
News
Professor David Nutt wants to change the way gravely ill patients are treated in Britain
people Why does a former Government tsar believe that mind-altering drugs have a place on prescription?
News
Norway’s ‘The Nordland Line – Minute by Minute, Season by Season’ continues the trend of slow TV
television
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
art
Sport
Jonny Evans has pleaded not guilty to an FA charge for spitting at Papiss Cisse
football
Life and Style
Kate Moss will make a cameo appearance in David Walliams' The Boy in the Dress
fashion
News
The image released by the Salvation Army, using 'The Dress'
news
Sport
Liverpool defender Kolo Toure
football Defender could make history in the FA Cup, but African Cup of Nations win means he's already content
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans campaign: Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after £300,000 gift from Lloyds Bank

Homeless Veterans campaign

Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after huge gift from Lloyds Bank
Flight MH370 a year on: Lost without a trace – but the search goes on

Lost without a trace

But, a year on, the search continues for Flight MH370
Germany's spymasters left red-faced after thieves break into brand new secret service HQ and steal taps

Germany's spy HQ springs a leak

Thieves break into new €1.5bn complex... to steal taps
International Women's Day 2015: Celebrating the whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Simone de Beauvoir's seminal feminist polemic, 'The Second Sex', has been published in short-form for International Women's Day
Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Why would I want to employ someone I’d be happy to have as my boss, asks Simon Kelner
Confessions of a planespotter: With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent

Confessions of a planespotter

With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent. Sam Masters explains the appeal
Russia's gulag museum 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities

Russia's gulag museum

Ministry of Culture-run site 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities
The big fresh food con: Alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay

The big fresh food con

Joanna Blythman reveals the alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay
Virginia Ironside was my landlady: What is it like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7?

Virginia Ironside was my landlady

Tim Willis reveals what it's like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7
Paris Fashion Week 2015: The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp

Paris Fashion Week 2015

The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp
8 best workout DVDs

8 best workout DVDs

If your 'New Year new you' regime hasn’t lasted beyond February, why not try working out from home?
Paul Scholes column: I don't believe Jonny Evans was spitting at Papiss Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible

Paul Scholes column

I don't believe Evans was spitting at Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible
Miguel Layun interview: From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

Miguel Layun is a star in Mexico where he was criticised for leaving to join Watford. But he says he sees the bigger picture
Frank Warren column: Amir Khan ready to meet winner of Floyd Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao

Khan ready to meet winner of Mayweather v Pacquiao

The Bolton fighter is unlikely to take on Kell Brook with two superstar opponents on the horizon, says Frank Warren
War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable