Football Friends Online – When 90 Mins Is Not EnoughThe biggest rivalry in... Lincolnshire! - Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough The biggest rivalry in... Lincolnshire! - Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough

The biggest rivalry in… Lincolnshire!

Forget the ‘Merseyside derby’ the ‘Manchester derby’ or the ‘Derby della Capitale’, the El Classico of Lincolnshire is happening twice within this month.

On Boxing Day Sincil Bank home to Lincoln City (the Imps) will play host to their bitter rivals Grimsby Town (the Mariners). This rivalry is regarded as a fierce bitter rivalry that has been ongoing for years.

Born and bred in Lincolnshire my family is divided in this rivalry. My Dad is a Grimsby Town fan and his brother, my Uncle is a Lincoln City fan. For years my Dad had the bragging rights over his brother as the Mariners were successfully challenging in what was then the 1st division and now the Championship. On the other hand the Imps were season in season out struggling in the 3rd division.

When the sponsors of the leagues changed to Coca Cola it all went wrong for Grimsby Town. A mixture of financial problems and the loss of key players meant that the Mariners, within four seasons had gone from beating Liverpool in the League Cup at Anfield in 2002 to joining rivals Lincoln City in League two by 2005.

Lincoln City on the other hand have regularly been known to be the third best team in Lincolnshire behind Scunthorpe and Grimsby. They have for years played in the Conference and League two.

The Imps went through a brief spell of falsehood and heart ache when they reached the play-offs for 5 consecutive seasons and each time failed to gain promotion. They lost in 2 finals and in the 2005/06 season they lost the two legged play-off semi final against Grimsby Town (this added massively to the rivalry).

Although for years the Mariners have been far superior, the Imps did gain the bragging rights at the end of the 2009/10 season when Grimsby Town were relegated to the Conference. This lasted only a brief time, a season in fact as the Imps followed their rivals into the Conference. And so their rivalry is reunited.

Over the years I have been too many Grimsby v Lincoln matches and I can honestly say they hate each other. I remember one year me and my Dad went to a match at Sincil Bank and being with my Dad I was supporting Grimsby so sat in the away end. Grimsby were disallowed a late winner and at full time it was chaos. A chorus of boos and interesting chants were exchanged between the two teams.

My most favoured derby match was the following season when at home to Lincoln, Grimsby thrashed them 5-1 Jean-Louis Akpa Akpro scored 2 and fans favourite at the time Adam Proudlock scored a hat trick.

This season’s derby will have that added spice as the two clubs are at the wrong end of the Conference table and are in much need of some vital points. Lincoln are just outside of the relegation zone and Grimsby are sat mid table.

With both derby matches inside a week, the festive period will be bitter and extremely competitive for Lincolnshire Football.

Daniel Clark @Clarky92



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