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Mariners admit targeting Pullen

PUBLISHED: 07:00 24 February 2003 | UPDATED: 16:20 24 February 2010

GRIMSBY goal-scorer Paul Groves admitted they targeted debut-making James Pullen hoping he would make a nervous start.

GRIMSBY goal-scorer Paul Groves admitted they targeted debut-making James Pullen hoping he would make a nervous start, writes Derek Davis.

The Mariners player-manager opened the scoring for Grimsby and they took the lead for a second time when a Michel Boulding shot deceived Pullen.

Groves said: “For my goal, it was a great ball in from Richard Hughes and we were looking to test the keeper with it being his debut. We got a little bit fortunate and scored.”

Winning 3-0 at Grimsby was a big enough shock and cost George Burley his job but to almost double Town was more than Groves expected.

He said: “If you told me before this game that we would have got a point I would have taken it. But now I have mixed emotions.

“We probably deserved to get all three points out of the game bearing in mind that the chances they created in the second half were next to nothing.

“Danny Coyne has not had a save to make and their manager acknowledged that they didn't deserve the equaliser. “Then to concede a goal as late as we did was very disappointing.

“We will take great encouragement from the performance and that we have scored two away from home.

“Ipswich are a good side and I'm sure they will reach the play-offs. We watched them in midweek and they played a tight three in midfield. We could not let them dictate the centre of the park and we were successful because they changed that at half-time.”The draw means Grimsby drop into the bottom three after Brighton beat Millwall, while Sheffield Wednesday and Stoke City occupy the other two relegation spots.

Groves said: “I'm sure the relegation battle will go on right to the end. We have been here before but we know performances like this one will give us all great encouragement.

“The two lads that came in, John Oster and Richard Hughes, had a lot to do with the way we played.”

Groves is now hoping the supporters will club together to find the cash to make Oster's loan move from Sunderland a permanent one.


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