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

Sport
Australia vs New Zealand live
cricket Follow over-by-over coverage as rivals New Zealand and Australia face off
News
Zayn has become the first member to leave One Direction. 'I have to do what feels right in my heart,' he said
peopleWe wince at anguish of fans, but his 1D departure shows the perils of fame in the social media age
Life and Style
Researchers found that just 10 one-minute swill-and-spit sessions are enough to soften tooth enamel and make teeth vulnerable to erosion
health
News
i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
The Regent Street Cinema’s projection room in the 1920s
film
News
Leah Devine is only the ninth female to have made the Young Magician of the Year final since the contest began more than 50 years
peopleMeet the 16-year-old who has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year
News
Jonathan Anderson was born in Northern Ireland but now based between London, where he presents a line named JW Anderson
peopleBritish designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
News
Andy Davidhazy at the beginning (left) and end (right) of his hike
video
News
Taylor Swift is applying to trademark song lyrics from 1989
people
Voices
The popularity of TV shows such as The Liver Birds encouraged Liverpudlians to exaggerate their Scouse accent
voicesWe exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
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

Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor
How to make your own Easter egg: Willie Harcourt-Cooze shares his chocolate recipes

How to make your own Easter egg

Willie Harcourt-Cooze talks about his love affair with 'cacao' - and creates an Easter egg especially for The Independent on Sunday
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef declares barbecue season open with his twist on a tradtional Easter Sunday lamb lunch

Bill Granger's twist on Easter Sunday lunch

Next weekend, our chef plans to return to his Aussie roots by firing up the barbecue
Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

The England prop relives the highs and lows of last Saturday's remarkable afternoon of Six Nations rugby
Cricket World Cup 2015: Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?

Cricket World Cup 2015

Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?
The Last Word: Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing