Rovers travel to take on Sky Bet League Two side Grimsby Town in the Carabao Cup first round on Tuesday night.
Darren Moore’s side have drawn both of their league games so far this season, with Kieran Sadlier scoring in consecutive 1-1 draws with Gillingham and Rochdale respectively.
The hosts have picked up four points from their first two games, following up an opening day win at Morecambe with a point at home to Bradford City last time out.
Brief history of Grimsby Town
Grimsby play at the 9,027-capacity Blundell Park stadium, which is located in Cleethorpes.
They are nicknamed the Mariners, which comes from their proximity to the east coast.
Grimsby returned to the EFL in 2016 following their National League play-off final victory over Forest Green Rovers at Wembley Stadium, with Omar Bogle’s double and Nathan Arnold’s injury time strike sealing a return to league football after a six-year absence.
Who’s the gaffer?
Michael Jolley took charge of Grimsby towards the end of the 2017/18 campaign and helped ensure the club maintained their league status by avoiding relegation to the National League.
Jolley arrived at Blundell Park after a year in Sweden as manager of AFC Eskilstuna, having previously spent time as a coach at Premier League side Burnley.
Ones to watch
The 30-year-old goalkeeper started his professional career with Sky Bet League One outfit Peterborough United, making a handful of appearance s at London Road before spending time out on loan with non-league side Kettering Town, Worcester City and Boston United. A move to Grimsby in 2011 proved to be a key one in McKeown’s career, as he’s now gone on to make more than 350 appearances for the Mariners.
Having started his career at Sheffield United, Whitehouse spent several spells out on loan before a permanent move to non-league side Nuneaton. After an impressive two seasons with the club, the central midfielder made a move to Lincoln City where he played a pivotal role in their promotion to Sky Bet League Two. He scored the winning goal in the Imps’ 1-0 victory over Shrewsbury Town in the Checkatrade Trophy final at Wembley in 2018, before signing for Grimsby at the end of that season. He had to wait more than 12 months for his debut for the Mariners, after suffering a serious knee injury in pre-season. It was worth the wait though as he scored in the opening day victory at Morecambe to get his Grimsby career up and running.
Experienced front-man Hanson arrived to bolster Grimsby’s forward line in the summer after an extensive career in the lower leagues. The 31-year-old made his name with fellow Sky Bet League Two side Bradford City, scoring 77 goals in almost 250 appearances at Valley Parade – including guiding City to Wembley twice in the same season in league and cup. He joined Sheffield United in January 2017 and enjoyed a season with AFC Wimbledon before joining the Mariners.
Who’s the ref?
John Brooks will be the man in charge when Rovers travel to Blundell Park, and you can read more about him here.
Last time out
An Alfie May double secured a 2-0 victory for Rovers in last season’s Checkatrade Trophy group stage fixture at the Keepmoat Stadium. The forward opened the scoring with a brilliant curling effort into the top corner, before doubling his tally with a penalty in the second-half.