Grimsby Town must avoid banana skin of rock-bottom Kidderminster
By Lee Jones ...
"GRIMSBY Town always beat the big sides and then come a cropper against the minnows."
If I had a pound for every time I've heard a Mariners fan say that I wouldn't be working at the Telegraph – I'd be on a beach somewhere sipping a nice pint of shandy.
Going back a decade or so, we all remember Town regularly turning over the 'big boys' in the old Division One and upsetting the form-book.
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And, of course, the League Cup victories over the likes of Liverpool and Spurs will live long in the memory.
But is that ability to overcome the odds and shock the top clubs still a Town trait?
Well, last season's failure to beat any of the Conference's top six – home or away – suggests otherwise.
In fact, the Mariners mustered only four draws in their 12 encounters with the top sides.
It's all hypothetical, but if they could have achieved a reasonable haul of, say, four wins, four draws and four defeats from those clashes – still only 16 points – Town would have been in the Blue Square Bet Premier play-off places come May.
This season, the situation already looks rosier, with Saturday's victory over table-toppers Forest Green following wins over promotion-chasers Hereford United and Mansfield Town.
Add to that the handy goal–less draw at Wrexham and it's not a bad start at all.
The Mariners' improved displays against the top sides will be tested again when perennial title favourites Luton Town visit Blundell Park next week, with Gateshead and Newport County up before the end of the month.
Their ability to brush aside teams at the other end of the table, however, will come into sharp focus even sooner.
The Mariners travel to Worcestershire to face bottom-side Kidderminster this afternoon.
And after draws with strugglers Barrow and Nuneaton already this season, Town fans could be forgiven for fearing that the old adage still applies after all.
Winless and rock-bottom, Steve Burr's Harriers are just the sort of opponents Mariners fans are wary of.
That's why today's encounter could prove to be one of the most pivotal moments of Town's whole campaign.
Show that they can dispatch the bottom sides – as well as the big boys – and Scott and Hurst's men really will be genuine promotion challengers this season.
But lose at Aggborough and I could be in line for a few more pound coins from the doubters!