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Match Reports

Match report for Sutton United 1 Grimsby Town 1

9 March 2024

Match Reports

Match report for Sutton United 1 Grimsby Town 1

9 March 2024

Sutton United 1(Lakin 88 pen) Grimsby Town 1(Obikwu 44)

Sutton rescued a point from what was generally agreed to be the poorest performance since Steve Morison took over as manager, a late spell of pressure ending with a penalty for handball, given by referee Alex Chilowicz on the advice of assistant Stephen Brown. Charlie Lakin smashed the penalty in to the net to cancel out Justin Obikwu's goal that had given Grimsby a deserved lead just before half time. For the second game running Sutton were grateful to goalkeeper Steve Arnold for several good saves either side of Obikwu's goal, and whereas last week Arnold's efforts had ultimately been in vain, this time they kept U's in the game to allow Lakin to salvage the draw when given the chance.

Arnold had an uncertain start to the game, failing to collect a free kick from the right and thankful that Craig Eastmond was well placed on the goalline to clear when Obikwu headed the ball goalwards. With Sutton struggling to make an impact on the Grimsby defence on a pitch which made flowing football difficult, Grimsby had the better of the game and Arnold made a good save to gather in a low shot from Harry Clifton before a fine stop at close range denied Obikwu. It was a shortlived reprieve, though, as moments later Clifton headed the ball back in to the penalty area after U's had partially cleared a corner, and Obikwu neatly steered a shot past Arnold and inside the post.

Sutton's failure to create a serious chance brought a double change at half time, Olly Sanderson and Omar Sowunmi replacing Craig Clay and Jack Taylor, but there was little change to the general flow of the game, as Obikwu produced a fine solo run before having a shot blocked, and Gavin Holohan's low 20-yard shot turned aside by Arnold. The keeper also denied Kieran Green, and when he was beaten by a Harvey Rodgers header from the resulting corner, the crossbar came to U's rescue.

To that point Sutton's only shot in anger had been a Sanderson effort which flew wide, but inside the last fifteen minutes, after Josh Coley and Deon Moore had been sent on to bolster the attack, U's began to put the Grimsby defence under pressure. A Lakin free kick led to a scramble in which both Sanderson and Harry Smith had shots blocked, and from another Lakin free kick Sowunmi's header fell to Eastmond, whose shot was diverted for a corner. Lakin's resulting corner from the right struck Grimsby captain Danny Rose scrambled it away, but the assistant spotted the use of a hand and after a long discussion between the assistant and the referee, who in the first half had overruled the same assistant quite demonstratively when he flagged for a foul, the penalty was awarded and blasted in by Lakin to level the scores.

Even then Grimsby might have grabbed the victory they would have felt they deserved when Curtis Thompson's shot was diverted to Holohan, but again Arnold was equal to the effort and his save ensured U's came out of the game with a point.

Sutton: S Arnold, R Jackson, N Adom-Malaki, J Kizzi, J Taylor (sub O Sowunmi H-T), S Hart(sub D Moore 64), S Duke-McKenna(sub J Coley 64), C Eastmond(sub C N'Guessan 90+), H Smith, C Clay(sub O Sanderson H-T), C Lakin. Subs n/u M Kerbey, J Williams. Booked: Eastmond

Grimsby: H Cartwright, D Tharme, D Hume, K Green(sub J Andrews 88), H Rodgers, C Thompson, T Mullarkey, G Holohan, J Obikwu(sub D Wilson 62), D Rose, H Clifton. Subs n/u J Eastwood, L Smith, A Eisa, R Pyke, H Wood. Booked: Thompson, Rose, Rodgers.

Referee: Alex Chilowicz

Attendance: 3,346(673 away)


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