We continue our 2019/20 season preview by featuring Grimsby Town -
Nickname : The Mariners
Stadium : Blundell Park
Capacity : 9,052
Round Trip From The Moss Rose : 232.8 miles
Last Season : 17th
After a promising start to the 2018/19 campaign, it ultimately proved to be a disappointing one in Cleethorpes.
Early-season promise failed to materialise and although Grimsby were not dragged into a relegation fight, they were equally not really ever in contention for the play-off places.
This is something which Michael Jolley will be keen to rectify this time around and has conducted some astute business in the transfer market to aid this.
Grimsby will be keen to forge a more prevalent showing in the upper reaches of the division and if their new strike force can gel quickly, then The Mariners could well launch a surprise promotion bid
The Gaffer - Michael Jolley
From a Wall Street trader to Football Manager, the road Michael Jolley has taken into football management isn’t the path most travel - but it’s been one hell of a journey for the Grimsby Town boss.
Jolley has all the credentials to be a success. Now, he’s aiming to take Grimsby to the next level.
Jolley was born in Sheffield and went on to join Barnsley’s ranks as a schoolboy, but he was released as a teenager at Oakwell and turned his attentions to a different career as he gained a place at Cambridge University to study Economics.
After graduating, he was working for HSBC in London before being transferred to New York in the early 2000’s - working on Wall Street during the time of the 9/11 attacks, just a mile away from the atrocity.
However, despite his banking background Jolley should not be underestimated by fans and pundits alike. The UEFA Pro Licence is the highest available managerial qualification in Europe and Jolley is a proud recipient of this award.
His coaching career started as a volunteer in Crystal Palace’s academy, when he moved back to the UK in 2005. At Selhurst Park, he helped the likes of Sean Scannell, John Bostock and Victor Moses make their breakthroughs into professional football.
In 2007 Jolley left London to join Nottingham Forest’s academy on a part-time basis, but he soon left for Scotland where he was appointed High-Performance football coach at Stirling University FC. Alongside this he also joined Falkirk’s academy as he continued to bolster his coaching pedigree.
After graduating in Scotland, Jolley was one of sixteen coaches to be selected to participate in the inaugural FA Elite Coaches Award and in 2013 completed the course becoming one of only a handful of coaches to hold the award.
Spells as Lincoln City’s First Team Coach and a role in Crewe Alexandra’s prestigious academy followed, before he made the move to manage Burnley’s U23 side under the tutelage of one of English football’s hottest managers - Sean Dyche.
During his time at Turf Moor he continued to complete his coaching badges and in 2016 he gained the UEFA Pro License award - the highest coaching badge available.
Forging a name for himself after returning to England, Jolley’s big break finally came in 2017 when he was given the chance to become first team manager of Swedish side AFC Eskilstuna.
The club were winless in the Allsvenskan (Swedish top flight) and were firmly rooted to the bottom of the table when he joined. However, despite a spirited resurgence towards the end of the season, Jolley couldn’t save the club from relegation, but he did gain many plaudits along the way.
Victories over big clubs such as IFK Gotenburg and a 3-1 victory over run away champions Malmo, meant Jolley was beginning to be recognised by spectators and pundits in Sweden and England alike.
In March 2017, the Yorkshireman filled the vacant hot-seat at Blundell Park after Russell Slade’s departure and despite his previous job in Scandanavia ending in relegation, Jolley steered the Mariners to Football League safety.
When he took the job, the Grimsby board indicated they wanted to “create and embed a new philosophy at the club” and Jolley has wasted no time in strengthening the team both on and off the pitch.
In June 2017, he added former Woking manager Anthony Limbrick to his coaching staff, another young coach who is earning his stripes in the game.
Out - Danny Collins, Wes Thomas, Martyn Woodford, JJ Hooper
In - Matt Green, James Hanson, Moses Ogpu, Elliott Hewitt, Liam Gibson (loan).
Our Last Meeting.
Two first-half strikes proved to be enough to give Sol Campbell's side maximum points at Blundell Park back in January, as we claimed a vital away win.
Tyrone Marsh opened the scoring in the 26th minute, as he deflect Michael Rose's free-kick into the back of the net and seven minute later, Scott Wilson broke free before calmly slotting the ball home to double our lead.
Both sides had chances to add to the scoreline in the second period, yet Macc went on to claim three precious points.
Our Next Meetings.
Home - Thursday 26th December