James Marwood scored twice as Gateshead beat nine-man Grimsby Town to reach the Conference Premier play-off final.

The hosts led when Marwood's long shot was somehow spilled into his own goal by James McKeown.

Town skipper Craig Disley rifled home from 12 yards in between red cards for Scott Neilson and Sam Hatton, who walked for a needless second booking.

Gateshead capitalised when Marwood curled home from the corner of the box, JJ O'Donnell adding a late third.

The Heed, whose attendance of 8,144 was a club record for a competitive match, are now a game away from ending their 54-year Football League exile.

It is another step in a remarkable turnaround for a club, now unbeaten in 14 games, that was mired in a relegation battle when Gary Mills became boss in September. They will now face Cambridge United in what will be their first ever trip to Wembley.

A man transformed

Before this season, Gateshead's James Marwood - son of former Hull City, Sheffield Wednesday, Arsenal and England winger Brian - had scored just once in 77 league games for the club. Since Gary Mills became manager in September, the 23-year-old striker has now notched 11 in 37.

For Paul Hurst's Grimsby, it was play-off semi-final heartbreak for the second season in a row, after last term's defeat by Newport.

In a first half of little goalmouth action, play was largely controlled by the hosts, the best chance fell to midfielder Jamie Chandler, who fired straight at McKeown from 10 yards.

But he could not deal with Marwood's speculative effort midway through the opening period, and watched despairingly as it trickled into the corner.

Shortly after half-time, Grimsby winger Neilson followed through on Baxter, but his dismissal seemed to spark the visitors into life.

After Heed defender James Curtis had a header disallowed for offside soon after a previous effort was hacked off the line, Town poured forward and after a succession of attacks, left-back Aswad Thomas beat Baxter and pulled the ball back for skipper Craig Disley to lash home.

Post-match: Grimsby manager Hurst

With the match seemingly headed for extra-time, Hatton felled Carl Magnay when the full-back was barely beyond the halfway-line, joining Neilson in the dressing room.

A moment of brilliance from Marwood settled the tie as veteran playmaker John Oster picked him out on the corner of the box and the 23-year-old cut onto his left foot to bend a beautiful strike into the far top corner.

Then, with eight Grimsby players upfield, McKeown came racing out to close down Phil Turnbull, who unselfishly fed substitute O'Donnell to make certain of a trip to Wembley to face Cambridge and trigger a mass pitch invasion.

Lineup, Bookings (7) & Substitutions (5)

Gateshead

  • 01 Bartlett
  • 16 Baxter
  • 02 Magnay
  • 08 Turnbull
  • 05 Curtis
  • 06 Clark
  • 04 Chandler Booked
  • 29 Oster
  • 07 Larkin (O'Donnell - 67' )
  • 18 Marwood Booked
  • 25 Maddison (Hatch - 72' )

Substitutes

  • 09 Hatch
  • 17 Walker
  • 19 Lester
  • 21 Ramshaw
  • 38 O'Donnell

Grimsby Town

  • 13 McKeown
  • 02 Hatton Dismissed after an earlier booking
  • 03 Thomas
  • 08 Disley Booked
  • 06 Doig (Cook - 86' )
  • 30 Boyce Booked
  • 23 Rodman
  • 04 Kerr (Thanoj - 82' )
  • 17 Hannah (Fyfield - 82' )
  • 11 Neilson Dismissed
  • 14 John-Lewis

Substitutes

  • 09 Cook
  • 18 Thanoj
  • 26 McLaughlin
  • 27 Fyfield
  • 28 Tounkara
Ref: Kevin Johnson
Att: 8,144

Match Stats

Shots

16 9

On target

8 4

Corners

0 0

Fouls

6 11

Live Text Commentary

+7:00 Full time

Full Time Match ends, Gateshead 3, Grimsby Town 1.

90:00 +6:00 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, Gateshead 3, Grimsby Town 1.

90:00 +3:48 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Gateshead 3, Grimsby Town 1. JJ O'Donnell (Gateshead) left footed shot from outside the box to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Jamie Chandler.

90:00 +2:22 Booking

Booking James Marwood (Gateshead) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

90:00 +2:07

Attempt saved. Liam Hatch (Gateshead) right footed shot from the left side of the box is saved.

90:00 +1:43

Attempt saved. Jamie Chandler (Gateshead) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved.

90:00 +0:43

Corner, Gateshead.

90:00 +0:12

Foul by Andi Thanoj (Grimsby Town).

90:00 +0:12

Craig Baxter (Gateshead) wins a free kick.

85:51 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Grimsby Town. Andy Cook replaces Chris Doig.

83:44 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Gateshead 2, Grimsby Town 1. James Marwood (Gateshead) left footed shot from the right side of the box to the top left corner. Assisted by John Oster.

82:45

Attempt saved. Jamie Chandler (Gateshead) header from the right side of the box is saved. Assisted by James Marwood with a cross.

81:23 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Grimsby Town. Jamal Fyfield replaces Ross Hannah.

81:12 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Grimsby Town. Andi Thanoj replaces Scott Kerr.

80:33

Attempt missed. Phillip Turnbull (Gateshead) right footed shot from outside the box is too high.

79:33

Attempt missed. Craig Baxter (Gateshead) right footed shot from outside the box is too high.

78:38 Dismissal

Dismissal Second yellow card to Sam Hatton (Grimsby Town) for a bad foul.

78:34

Foul by Sam Hatton (Grimsby Town).

78:34

Carl Magnay (Gateshead) wins a free kick.

75:17

Offside, Gateshead. Liam Hatch tries a through ball, but Liam Hatch is caught offside.

73:50 Booking

Booking Jamie Chandler (Gateshead) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

73:41

Foul by Jamie Chandler (Gateshead).

73:41

Aswad Thomas (Grimsby Town) wins a free kick.

72:03 Booking

Booking Sam Hatton (Grimsby Town) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

71:47

Foul by Sam Hatton (Grimsby Town).

71:47

JJ O'Donnell (Gateshead) wins a free kick.

71:02 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Gateshead. Liam Hatch replaces Marcus Maddison.

68:23

Attempt missed. Marcus Maddison (Gateshead) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right.

66:11 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Gateshead. JJ O'Donnell replaces Colin Larkin.

64:59

Offside, Grimsby Town. Ross Hannah tries a through ball, but Ross Hannah is caught offside.

64:15

Foul by Craig Baxter (Gateshead).

64:15

Aswad Thomas (Grimsby Town) wins a free kick.

62:25

Attempt blocked. Phillip Turnbull (Gateshead) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

61:01

Attempt saved. Lenell John-Lewis (Grimsby Town) right footed shot from outside the box is saved.

59:15 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Gateshead 1, Grimsby Town 1. Craig Disley (Grimsby Town) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the high centre of the goal. Assisted by Aswad Thomas with a cross.

57:49

Offside, Gateshead. James Curtis tries a through ball, but James Curtis is caught offside.

57:12 Booking

Booking Andrew Boyce (Grimsby Town) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

56:52

Foul by Andrew Boyce (Grimsby Town).

56:52

Jamie Chandler (Gateshead) wins a free kick.

54:12 Dismissal

Dismissal Scott Neilson (Grimsby Town) is shown the red card for a bad foul.

53:58

Foul by Scott Neilson (Grimsby Town).

53:58

Craig Baxter (Gateshead) wins a free kick.

53:37

Attempt blocked. Aswad Thomas (Grimsby Town) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.

52:20

Attempt blocked. Marcus Maddison (Gateshead) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

51:59

Foul by Andrew Boyce (Grimsby Town).

51:59

John Oster (Gateshead) wins a free kick.

51:43

Attempt blocked. James Marwood (Gateshead) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Marcus Maddison.

50:58

Corner, Gateshead.

49:56

Attempt missed. Carl Magnay (Gateshead) right footed shot from outside the box is too high.

47:21

Corner, Gateshead.

46:48

Attempt missed. Lenell John-Lewis (Grimsby Town) left footed shot from outside the box.

45:00

Second Half begins Gateshead 1, Grimsby Town 0.

45:00 +1:06 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, Gateshead 1, Grimsby Town 0.

36:12

Foul by Aswad Thomas (Grimsby Town).

36:12

Craig Baxter (Gateshead) wins a free kick.

34:19

Offside, Grimsby Town. Ross Hannah tries a through ball, but Ross Hannah is caught offside.

33:56

Foul by Colin Larkin (Gateshead).

33:56

Andrew Boyce (Grimsby Town) wins a free kick.

33:29

Attempt blocked. James Marwood (Gateshead) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

32:47 Booking

Booking Craig Disley (Grimsby Town) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

32:31

Foul by Craig Disley (Grimsby Town).

32:31

Marcus Maddison (Gateshead) wins a free kick.

29:32

Attempt saved. Marcus Maddison (Gateshead) left footed shot from outside the box is saved.

28:43

Foul by Ross Hannah (Grimsby Town).

28:43

Carl Magnay (Gateshead) wins a free kick.

23:53

Foul by James Curtis (Gateshead).

23:53

Aswad Thomas (Grimsby Town) wins a free kick.

22:46

Attempt saved. Lenell John-Lewis (Grimsby Town) right footed shot from outside the box is saved.

22:32

Corner, Grimsby Town.

22:22

Attempt blocked. Scott Kerr (Grimsby Town) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

21:28 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Gateshead 1, Grimsby Town 0. James Marwood (Gateshead) right footed shot from outside the box to the high centre of the goal.

20:37

Foul by James Curtis (Gateshead).

20:37

Lenell John-Lewis (Grimsby Town) wins a free kick.

19:21

Offside, Gateshead. Colin Larkin tries a through ball, but Colin Larkin is caught offside.

17:17

Corner, Grimsby Town.

17:04

Attempt blocked. Scott Neilson (Grimsby Town) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

16:54

Attempt blocked. Scott Neilson (Grimsby Town) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

16:05

Foul by Ben Clark (Gateshead).

16:05

Alex Rodman (Grimsby Town) wins a free kick.

8:54

Attempt saved. Jamie Chandler (Gateshead) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved.

7:31

Foul by Alex Rodman (Grimsby Town).

7:31

John Oster (Gateshead) wins a free kick.

3:37

Attempt saved. Scott Neilson (Grimsby Town) right footed shot from outside the box is saved.

0:02

Foul by Lenell John-Lewis (Grimsby Town).

0:02

Carl Magnay (Gateshead) wins a free kick.

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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