Grimsby Town at Dartford: FA Trophy clash a 'fantastic opportunity' to show Braintree defeat was a one-off - Hurst
PAUL Hurst insists it is not ‘panic stations’ as Grimsby Town aim to make their Wembley dream a reality.
The Mariners take a three-goal buffer into tomorrow’s FA Trophy semi-final second leg at Dartford.
And after landing a virtual-knockout blow at Blundell Park last weekend, Town are hot favourites to take their place in next month’s final.
However, Tuesday’s clash at Braintree saw them beaten for the first time since November – and edged off the Conference summit.
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Joint boss Hurst admits it is tempting to respond with changes to the team, but has also called for calm ahead of the trip to Kent.
“We’ve got a few decisions to make because the performance the other night wasn’t great,” he told the Telegraph.
“There’s an argument for changing a lot of things but, at the same time, hopefully Tuesday was a one-off.
“In the run of games beforehand the players took a lot of credit, so it’s not a case of panic stations – we’ll just make the changes that we feel are necessary.”
Hurst was quick to point to the Mariners’ long unbeaten run, in league and cup, and believes Tuesdays’ under-par display at the Amlin Stadium was the exception, not the norm.
He explained: “It wasn’t like when we lost at Braintree last season when we had the players in the following day and felt we had to get a few home truths out there.
“With the run this side has been on and how they’ve performed to this point in the season, they’ve done extremely well.
“We’re not just sweeping it under the carpet but we genuinely hope it was a one-off.
“And tomorrow is a fantastic opportunity to show that it was.
“Maybe we needed it as a reminder – a kick up the backside if you like.
“It’s now about looking at tomorrow and the rest of the season, not letting one bad performance affect the run that we’re on.
“The previous 18 games were mixed in terms of performances, but ultimately we got the result that we wanted on most of those occasions.”
On the suggestion that tomorrow’s Trophy test could have been a distraction this week, Hurst added: “I don’t think that was the case.
“Tuesday was a night when too many of the team had an off-day, but that’s been few and fair between, and we’re not going to be too hard on them.
“No matter what happens, if a ‘disaster’ happened or we get through, the focus very swiftly has to move on to the league, where we have two games within a week.
“Hopefully we can then put a Wembley trip to one side until that comes around.”