Match report: Record crowd sees Cleethorpes and Grimsby derby end goalless
Cleethorpes Town and Grimsby Borough played out a goalless draw in front of a record crowd at the Myenergi Stadium this afternoon.
Despite the crowd of more than 1,300 not being treated to a goal, the huge turnout for the first meeting between the two sides at this level is certainly a huge win for non-league football in North East Lincolnshire on Boxing Day.
Expectations were high amongst the packed ranks of supporters at pitch-side on a beautiful winter’s afternoon but, while the game was highly competitive, it didn’t quite reach the expected heights.
The first opportunity didn’t come until the 21st minute, as Boro’s Adam Drury dragged his shot a yard wide after finding space on the inside-right channel.
At the other end, Clee loanee Harvey Tomlinson headed over following a decent move by the hosts, before Liam Higton did well to keep out Curtis Bateson’s curler shortly after that.
The Owls finished the half strongly, with both Bateson and Tomlinson again having half-chances to break the deadlock in the final moments of the half.
Boro emerged from the break looking the more likely side to open the scoring, with the hard-working Clee defence largely keeping any attacking threat at arm’s length.
It wasn’t until the 74th minute that Owls keeper Tom Jackson was called into making a serious save, as he produced an athletic dive to pull off a smart stop.
Dec Howe, who had run himself into the ground throughout the game for the home side, earned the chance to claim all three points with eight minutes left to play.
The striker found a yard to fire in a goalbound shot, but Higton reacted with a low block to ensure his team headed back to Bradley with a more than deserved share of the points.
Clee will be satisfied to see the point propel them back up into the playoff places, while Boro – who were the better side on the day – will be pleased to continue their recent good run of form.