Scarr's Grimsby Preview
After a three-match league suspension, Dan Scarr returned to action for Argyle on Monday night – and what a game to return to.
Scarr took his place in the Pilgrims defence for the 4-2 win over Exeter City, played out in front of a full house at Home Park, and televised live on Sky Sports.
The cacophony of noise inside the Theatre of Greens was special, and was not lost on Scarr and his team-mates.
“It was the best atmosphere I have played in for a while,” he said. “You can see how much it means to the fans. They got behind us even when we went down, it was a good night all round.
“The build-up to it was big, all over the weekend. Every time you met a fan out and about in the town, or shopping, it’s all they wanted to speak about. You can tell what it means to them, and we were happy to get them the three points.
“Even driving in, through town, it was busy past the train station, and around the ground it was so busy. That’s the most people I have seen in while we were doing the warm-up.”
Scarr missed out on the games against MK Dons, Bristol Rovers and Shrewsbury Town, and confessed that he was rather restless when watching his team-mates continue the club’s long unbeaten run.
“I hate watching it,” he said. “I want to kick and head every ball. I’m a terrible watcher. I’m glad to be back in.
“At training, you train hard because you need to keep your fitness, but you’re not training with an end goal. It’s a strange one, mentally. The fact that I’m not injured, and I want to get out there and do it, it’s tough. But it is good to support the lads. We’ve got a good, strong team now. If anyone drops out, the next person who steps in is always ready, and always plays well.”
Attention now turns to the Emirates FA Cup, a competition in which Argyle got to the fourth round last season, beating Sheffield Wednesday, Rochdale and Birmingham before meeting Chelsea, and giving the Premier League giants a real fright.
The FA Cup holds a dear place in Scarr’s footballing heart. Whilst a player for Northern Premier League side Stourbridge, he played - and scored - in a third-round tie at Wycombe Wanderers, a club he would later play for.
This weekend Argyle go to Grimsby Town, 13th in Sky Bet League Two, as the highest-ranked side in the FA Cup, and Scarr is looking ahead to his first-ever trip to Blundell Park.
“I love this competition,” Dan said. “It’s where I came through, out of non-league and into the Football League.
“Last season, we got Birmingham, Chelsea, we had games on TV against Sheffield Wednesday and Rochdale. It’s good all round. Good things can come of it, for the club financially with TV draws and big draws. You just have to get through. These ones are the toughest, where you are not classed as the underdog. We’ll give it a good go, we’ll be professional about it.
“I’ve never played at Grimsby, so I’m not sure what it’s like, but I’ve played against them over the years and they can be scrappy, get in your face. You just have to be prepared for that. That’s what the staff will do: prepare us the right way, and do a professional job to go up there and get in the next round.”