The fans kicking off against the EFL

Barnsley SFC 3-3 Donny R'sonists

On Tuesday 29 August, Grimsby Town host Doncaster Rovers in the Checkatrade Trophy, but a large number of supporters won’t be there. Instead, they’ll be three miles down the road, on a pitch of their own, in opposition to each other, but also in opposition to the Football League.

Last summer the League’s decided to ‘spice up’ the Football League Trophy – the tournament for sides in the League’s third and fourth tiers – by introducing the development sides of clubs from the Championship and arse end of the Premier League, on the vague whim of improving the fortunes of the national team. An unproven and unfounded notion that also insults fans of third and fourth tier teams by inferring that the competitions their clubs feature in are right for experiment, and that it should be they who cede ground, not the Premier League clubs who’ve spent years stockpiling young footballers as if wayward twenty-year old left backs will be the chosen global currency of a post-apocalyptic society.

So during 2016-17’s iteration of the Checkatrade Trophy supporters boycotted the tournament in huge numbers. The Football League failed to take note, and have decided to run with their experiment again this season, making many lower league fans wary that Premier League B teams in the Football League may follow. So, this season the supporters of Grimsby Town has chosen to step up the protests in an effort to make more people sit up and take notice.

On 29 August, whilst the real Mariners and Rovers meet at Blundell Park, the Internet Mariners supporters’ football team, and their IFA counterparts the Donny R’sonists will play each other at Jubilee Park, Humberston.

‘We don’t like to stay away from our club’s games, but we are boycotting the competition, not our clubs, in order to send a message to the EFL.’
Iain Biglin, Internet Mariners

The aim is to attract as many people as possible to the game at Humberston in an effort to try and match, or hopefully better, the crowd at the Checkatrade Trophy game, whilst also raising money for charity; Inspire TCI, Grimsby Town Disabled Supporters Club and Doncaster’s Bluebell Wood Childrens Hospice.

Can this game attract greater numbers than the official fixture? Only with your help, so spread the word and help boost the crowd to send a real statement to those who supposedly run the game for the interest of their clubs.


Initially scheduled for Lucarly’s Sports Ground this match has now had to be relocated, not once, but twice owing to undisclosed circumstances suddenly rendering pitches unavailable. Odd that, anyway, a new venue has been found, details for which are below.

Venue: Jubilee Park, St Christopher’s Road, Humberston, DN36 4ED
Kick-off: 7.15pm
Ticket info: via this link

3 thoughts on “The fans kicking off against the EFL

  1. As I can walk 800 metres to the ground(compared to 60 miles to the Keepmoat!) I hope to go there rather than Blundell Park.What time is the kick off?

  2. Rovers win narrowly!!
    In front of about 100 fans (99 for Grimsby and me for Rovers) on a dimly lit pitch,the R Sonists secured victory in the first half before hanging on comfortably in the second half.Except the second half was only 30 mins as the referee quite rightly abandoned the match as at 8.30 it was dark.!!
    As there was no separate section for away supporters,I had to stand with the locals.Luckily I spotted 3 lads now in their30s( that I used to teach and play football with) so we were able to reminisce whilst watching.One of them normally plays but he was out injured .The game was played in a good spirit despite two deserved yellow cards for body checks, and it was admirably refereed and much appreciated by the crowd

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