Struggling League Two side Grimsby Town are our visitors tonight for the area quarter-finals of the Football League Trophy. Leeds are unsuprisingly favourites for the tie after our dominant start to the season and Simon Grayson has admitted the lure of playing at Wembley means the players shouldn’t need much motivation for this clash.

The distance between these two teams and the contrasting fortunes so far this season has left us 2/9 favourites for the tie, whilst Grimsby aren’t given much of a chance at 11/1.

Aside from a 2-0 win to Leeds in the 1998 FA Cup, the last time Leeds and Grimsby competed against each other was in the 1980’s in the Old Division Two. Throughout the 80’s Leeds and Grimsby met ten times, with Leeds winning four, Grimsby winning two and the rest ending in draws.

So far in this seasons Football League Trophy, Leeds have played just once beating Darlington 2-1. The game saw Simon Grayson make several changes to his usual line-up handing starts to Lubomir Michalik, Aidy White, David Prutton, Andy Robinson, Neil Kilkenny, Tresor Kandol and Mike Grella. There are rules in place to ensure teams play some of their usual line-up, but I’d expect a similar amount of changes tonight.

Although Leeds won their first FLT game of the season 2-1 against Darlington, Simon Grayson was publically critical of his sides display. Leeds started brightly enough and were 2-0 up before the half hour mark, but the foot came off the gas thereafter allowing Darlington to get back into the game. Simon told his fringe players that they should be making the best of these opportunities to impress and that failure to do so will see them given less chances.

Grimsby Town’s first game of this seasons Football League Trophy saw them beat our fellow League One rivals, Hartlepool 2-0. However, they’ve also lost 4-0 to Tranmere Rovers in the League Cup so I wouldn’t read too much into that.

It gets worse for Grimsby too. They haven’t won in their last five games and currently find themselves one place off the bottom of League Two. The only team with a worse record is the one we met in the last round of this competition, Darlington, who have managed just five points from fifteen games.

A familiar face returns to Elland Road tonight and is definitely one to watch. Peter Sweeney had little luck at Elland Road but has fit straight into Grimsby’s first team. In the ‘interview with a Grimsby Town fan’ I did, Rob told us how Peter was getting on in Grimsby;

He’s a good player, probably our most skillful player, the biggest problem is his mouth. He gets booked at least every other game for dissent. He’s suspended on Saturday against Bath for 5 bookings, probably all for dissent!

I also asked Rob for a prediction and he said a draw meaning it would go to penalties.

Personally, I’d be disappointed with anything less than a comfortable victory. I’m hoping to see Sam Vokes, Max Gradel and Aidy White given an entire match. As I said earlier, I think there’ll be mass changes to the usual line-up although with this weekends game postponed Simon doesn’t have to worry too much about resting anyone. Either way, (without wanting to sound arrogant) we should be too strong for Grimsby.

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