The second edition of our new Monday feature assesses the fallout from the weekend and hunts for the early value in upcoming coupons with a team to follow and another to avoid. This week, those famous old foes Grimsby Town and AC Milan...
It may well have gone unnoticed among the bigger headlines made in higher leagues over the weekend, but Grimsby Town were quietly and efficiently steamrollering their way past Blue Square Premier favourites Luton at Blundell Park on Friday evening.
The 4-1 thrashing capped a successful week for Rob Scott and Paul Hurst. The joint managers of the Mariners had previously secured loan deals for striker Ross Hannah – a debut goalscorer – and Scott Neilson, the 25-year-old midfielder who won promotion to League One with Crawley in May.
The club appear to finally be speculating to accumulate and if Hannah can add the goals that had been missing since Liam Hearn succumbed to long term injury, then Town can turn the goalless draws in to victories and stretch their unbeaten run to challenge at the top of the table. Even with a trip to leaders Newport on the horizon.
The secret’s finally out. AC Milan just aren’t very good. Sunday’s 2-1 reverse at Udinese - another club in disarray - meant that it’s three defeats from the opening four games. At the San Siro, they’ve failed to score in their first three competitive matches resulting in their worst home start to a season for 80 years.
In truth, the performance at Stadio Friuli was improved, but there were still signs to suggest things are going to get worse before they even hint at getting better. Two of the Rossoneri’s preferred players, Christian Zapata and Kevin-Prince Boateng, were sent off in Udine and face a suspension while, afterwards, manager Massimiliano Allegri was given a vote of confidence that is unlikely to unite a dressing room on the verge of disappearing.
On Tuesday night, they face a fresh Cagliari side champing at the bit after their weekend hosting of Roma was controversially postponed and awarded to the visitors. Then comes a tricky trio of fixtures that starts at Parma on Saturday, before taking in a Champions League trip to Zenit St Petersburg, and culminating with a city derby against Inter.
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