Town didn’t win anything in the 1993/94 season. Alan Buckley was at the helm and we were a solid second tier outfit;arguably punching above our weight as the influence of bigger money was being felt following the creation of the Premier League in 1992, but still holding our own.
Have a look at the 93/94 squad: Clive Mendonca, Jim Dobbin, Paul Groves and Paul Futcher! You want more? John McDermott, Gary Croft, Neil Woods, Tony Ford, Peter Handyside.. I’ll stop now, but what we would do for a team with just a handful of these players nowadays.
Town finished a creditable 16th with Super Clive topscoring with 14 goals. Buckley would shortly leave us for pastures greener and Brian Laws would take his place in the hotseat. We would also lose kit manufacturer Admiral after this single season and despite new manufacturer Diadora doing some sterling work, Town would struggle and eventually be relegated. It’s probably unrelated though, unless you know different..
I’m kind of torn on the kit though. Yes, it’s Admiral and we all love Admiral shirts don’t we? But there are a few things which niggle me about this one.
Grimsby Town play in black and white stripes but this is clearly white with some black stripes, something which was picked up on by the folks at Town fanzine Sing When We’re Fishing.
The manufacturer’s logo and club crest are left and right, above moob, but too close together. Shift them both outwards onto the vacant white space and everyone’s a winner. Whether the club realised this or Admiral had a change of heart (or more likely the manufacturer’s quality control slipped as they rushed to get the shirts out), shirts appeared with this adjustment made.
God only knows what happened in the pre-season team photo as several players are wearing the wide spaced shirts (e.g. Woods, back row, 2nd from left) and some the closer, stripe-mounted version (e.g. Super Clive, middle row, 3rd from right). Whatever the reason, someone needed their arse kicking for it.
The collar looks smart enough and I’m okay with the GTFC embroidery but what is the point of those orphaned press-studs? They don’t fix anything and are utterly pointless.
The sponsor logo on a white background is stupid too as it breaks up the stripes but I did love that red band on the sleeves. Maybe this would have been better as an all-white change strip?
It’s a love/hate thing. Despite the problems, I still love it but probably because of the players who wore it more than anything. There are still a few of these kicking around, sometimes with original shop tags attached so pick one up while you can. Ebay is your friend.