Preview: Grimsby Town v Harriers
Harriers face the first of two tricky long distance trips tomorrow with a visit to Blundell Park to take on Grimsby Town.
Before he can plot a way to stretch Harriers' unbeaten run to 14 games Steve Burr has a number of injury problems to contend with that will affect his team selection. Tom Sharpe and Lee Morris are definitely out, Sharpe is still continuing his rehabilitation from a dislocated knee and Morris picked up a calf injury in training during the week. Tom Shaw is still doubtful with the foot injury that he picked up in the win at Mansfield while Michael Briscoe, who signed an extension to his contract that keeps him at Aggborough for another season today, and Mike Williams both picked up injuries in last weekend's draw with Luton that make them both doubtful for tomorrow. If either of the Briscoe or Williams fail to make it, it could give an opportunity for on-loan Matt Lowe to make his debut.
Grimsby have not had the season that they were hoping for; like many of the teams that drop out of the Football League they expected to go straight back up but have found the Conference much harder to get out of and currently lie in 12th place. They have not won for five games and their poor form led to manager Neil Woods losing his job; The Mariners made an approach for Burr that was knocked back before they settled on Boston United management duo Paul Hurst and Rob Scott. They have two players definitely out of the game in suspended Charles Ademeno and injured Lee Ridley, but Michael Leary, Micky Cummins, Darran Kempson, Peter Bore and Steven Watt are all recovering from injury or illness and could feature.
Earlier in the season Harriers came out on top in the game at Aggborough, winning 3-2 with goals from Chris McPhee and two from Matt Blair. That was the first time that Harriers had avoided defeat against The Mariners; the only other time that the teams have met was in Harriers' relegation season when Grimsby did the double.
I expect Harriers to line-up as follows (4-5-1): Lewis; Vaughan, Williams, Briscoe, Albrighton; Blair, Briggs, McPhee, Gittings, Wright; Canham.
Subs (from): Lowe, Hankin, Byrne, Matt, Thompson-Brown, Stevens, Taylor.
Missing (injured): Shaw, Morris, Sharpe.
Missing (on-loan): Griffiths.
The referee tomorrow will be Stephen Smith from County Durham. This will be his first time in charge of a Harriers game.
Tomorrow's weather forecast for Grimsby suggests that it will be sunny with a temperature around 16°C.