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Late Goals Keep the Dream Alive

By: Rob Sedgwick
Date: 23/05/2022 (Last updated: 24/05/2022)

LATE drama at Meadow Lane saw Grimsby score at the end of normal time and also at the end of extra time to take their place in Saturday's semi-final at Wrexham. With 95 minutes on the clock, that looked extremely unlikely with Notts County leading 1-0 and just seconds left.

Town however were gifted a free kick thanks to an unnecessary push and Holohan bundled the ball over the line with effectively the last kick of the game. The Mariners then found themselves in extra time with an attacking line-up thanks to substitutions made to rescue the game. Both sides have chances in the extra half hour, but another set-piece saw Waterfall head the ball back across goal and Dieseruvwe bundle it in from close range.

Grimsby had been the better side over the 90 minutes and a 1-0 defeat would have been unjust deserts, especially as Grimsby started strongly and were the better side for most of the second half. Despite all their possession, though, Town failed to create much before the break and a Richardson cross which Rodrigues headed over the bar for the home side was the best chance of the first half.

Grimsby had been the better side in the first half, and their superiority if anything increased in the second. Sousa had a shot blocked and Holohan fired narrowly wide. Clifton then had a shot deflected wide, and Town got the ball in the back of the net through Taylor, but it was disallowed as the ball had gone out of play.

Notts County won a penalty after Smith was overpowered and the ball was played through to Sam whose shot was handled by Cropper. Rodrigues sent Crocombe the wrong way, to give Town 20 minutes to salvage something from their season.

Grimsby brought on their attacking subs and threw everything at Notts County. However, it looked to be in vain until a late free kick was conceded for an unnecessary push by Richardson on Clifton. Maguire-Drew took the kick, with everyone in the box including Crocombe and it came off a couple of bodies and eventually broke to Holohanwho drilled it in to send the Town fans into ecstasy.

Both sides had chances in extra time and it could have gone either way, but Town were handed another late chance with 118 minutes on the clock when they won a free kick and Waterfall and Dieseruvwe combined for another untidy goal, which turned out to be the winner.

It was a fantastic night of football, which saw Grimsby come back from the dead to pull a remarkable victory out of the bag and keep the dream alive.

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