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Season 12/13 Stagsnet Match Report
Blue Square Bet Premier
Mansfield Town  
2 - 2
 Luton Town
Hutchinson 7, Green 85.
 Gray 25, 67.
Attendance: 2619 (522 from Luton)
Date: 18 November 2012


Martin Shaw at the One Call Stadium

Fierce rivals Mansfield Town and Luton Town drew 2-2 at Field Mill in fabulous advert for the Blue Square Bet Premier league on Sunday lunchtime. Mansfield were ahead early on from a Ben Hutchinson header from an Exodus Geohaghon exocet missile long throw with a low trajectory. The Stags were in total command in the opening 25 minutes and Clements, Briscoe and Wright missed chances to increase the lead. But a bad mistake by Stags keeper Shane Redmond gifted Luton an equaliser. Andre Gray shot from a tight angle on the right as he was only two yards from the byeline, but Redmond fatally left a gap between himself and the right post and allowed the ball into the net. Redmond held his hands up in the changing room after the game apparently. Gray then missed from two yards for Luton. Early in the second half Hutchinson had a goal disallowed as he headed in, and review of the DVD showed he was a fraction offside. A superb game ebbed and flowed, and Mansfield were denied a penalty as Howell appeared to be pushed in the back. But Luton took the lead on 67 minutes as Redmond’s clearance only found a Luton player just inside the Mansfield half and the Stags defence was all over the place as Gray fired under Redmond. The Stags were now up against it as Luton had incredibly won every game this season in which that had led at any point (reference http://stats.football365.co.uk/dom/ENG/FC/ptslost.html). Stags substitute Matt Green equalised on 85 minutes from close range after another sub Matt Rhead knocked down a great ball from Chris Clements. So both teams had to settle for a point, but it was cracking entertainment for the 2600 fans.

After the game, Mansfield still have the equal best home record in the league, and Luton still have the best away record.

Exodus Geohaghon, captain for the day, picked up his fifth yellow card of the season (two picked up for Kidderminster) and he is now suspended for one game, away to Macclesfield on Tuesday. Dempster is of course already suspended. Lee Beevers is not suspended for Tuesday after some initial confusion. Beevers has picked up 5 yellow cards this season, but two of those led to his sending off and they do not count in the accumulation. [reference http://www.fiso.co.uk/forum/post708536.html#p708536 Quote: “I've just had a conversation with a nice lady in the FA disciplinary office who has confirmed the logical situation regarding two cards in a match: If a player receives two yellows (the second one meaning they actually get a red), neither counts towards the accumulation. However, if a player receives a yellow and then later in the match receives a straight red, the first card DOES count towards the accumulation.” Further reference http://www.thefa.com/football-rules-governance/suspensions , select Football Conference National, select `one caution away`, and it shows statistics before today’s game that Geohaghon and Roberts were on 4 yellows, but NOT Beevers].

Mansfield made one enforced change, with Thompson coming in for the suspended Dempster. Sutton moved from right back to centre half with Thompson in at right back. Luton were without former Stags striker Jon Shaw who was injured.

On 5 minutes, a Briscoe cross evaded everybody.

Mansfield were ahead on 7 minutes from a Ben Hutchinson header from an Exodus Geohaghon exocet missile long throw with a low trajectory. Hutchinson is showing himself to be a good header of the ball.

Then on 9 minutes another long throw from Geohaghon caused chaos in the Luton box. Clements shot just wide for Mansfield on 10 minutes with the aid of a deflection, and the resulting corner was deflected just wide. It was a pulsating start from Mansfield. Wright seemed to be through on goal on 17 minutes but he was flagged offside and shot wide anyway. A minute later, Briscoe shot wide of the left post from a tight angle. Mansfield were close to extending their lead on 24 minutes when Wright flicked wide of the right post from a Geohaghon cross.

Luton were level out of the blue on 25 minutes. Geohaghon allowed a ball to sail over him and Gray hared towards the byeline and when he was 2 yards from the byeline he fired goalwards and Redmond allowed a gap between himself and the post for the ball to fizz into the net. A terrible error by Redmond but a fine goal from Gray.

Buoyed by the goal, Luton came close on 27 minutes when Redmond saved low down from a header by Jake Howells. A Clements free kick was deflected wide on 32 minutes and 2 minutes later, Meikle fired over the bar from 20 yards. A minute later Anthony Howell headed straight into Tyler’s midriff following a good Stags’ move. Luton should have been ahead on 39 minutes when a powerful cross from Jake Howells hit Gray a yard from goal and somehow went wide of the left post.

A really good first half. Mansfield were excellent for the first 25 minutes but the Luton equaliser changed the game.

Half time 1-1

On 46 minutes, a teasing cross from Meikle was headed away by a defender. The Stags had the ball in the net on 47 minutes as Briscoe headed goalwards from the edge of the box and Hutchinson looped a back header over the keeper but Hutchinson was in an offside position. A poor clearance from Tyler a minute later came to the feet of Hutchinson 40 yards from goal but with a free sight of goal he scuffed his shot. Hutchinson was right in the middle of the action and 2 minutes later he was clearly tripped a foot outside the box but the referee waved play on. From another Geohaghon missile throw, Anthony Howell fired over the bar from six yards. Howell has fired over the bar numerous times in recent games. Great skill from Wright on 54 minutes but his cross was cleared. On 56 minutes, Lawless shot wide of the right post for Luton. A minute later, Wright was through on goal but scuffed his shot.

And a minute after that, on 58 minutes, Anthony Howell appeared to be clearly pushed in the back in the Luton box but the referee waved away Mansfield’s appeals for a penalty. The Stags had another shout for a penalty a minute later as Meikle crossed from the left and Kovacs blocked the clearance with either his chest or his arm. On 62 minutes, a header from Kovacs hit one of his own players on the line and Mansfield escaped.

Green replaced Wright on 64 minutes. A minute later, Hutchinson crossed and Meikle again fired over the bar.

Luton were ahead on 67 minutes. A ball through to Redmond saw the Stags’ keeper clear only as far as the half way line and Luton broke into the Mansfield half with players over and Gray buried a low shot under Redmond.

Back at the other end a minute later, Anthony Howell had a shot deflected wide.

Speight replaced Hutchinson on 69 minutes and three minutes later, Speight had a sniff of a chance inside the box but couldn’t get a shot away.

Rhead replaced Meikle on 76 minutes.

Luton could have extended their lead on 79 minutes when Jake Howells was in acres of space but Redmond saved his shot from the edge of the box.

Mansfield were deservedly level on 85 minutes. Thompson took a Stags’ free kick from the half way line short to Clements who crossed into the area and Rhead nodded the ball down into the path of Green who finished from close range.

Field Mill was rocking with excitement but Mansfield were unable to create a chance for a winner and it was Luton who came closest in the 4th minute of stoppage time when Gray crossed from the right and Clements did well to put it behind for a corner.

Man of the match: Ben Hutchinson

Report by: Martin Shaw at the One Call Stadium

Line Up:
Redmond 5 Disappointing mistake for the first goal. Clearance also led indirectly to the second goal. Other than that, handling was good.
Thompson 7 Fine game back in the side at right back. Text vote man of the match.
Sutton 6.5 Defended ok at centre half.
Geohaghon 6.5 Allowed ball to go over his head for the first goal. Otherwise defended quite well, and exocet missile long throws caused mayhem.
Beevers 7 Defended well.
Briscoe 6 Didn’t create much. One shot from a tight angle. Generally crossing from Briscoe and Meikle needs to improve.
Howell 6 Not quite providing the protection for the back four that his role dictates. There is a case for a Murray/Clements central midfield.
Clements 7 Good game. Great ball for Green’s goal. Great block in stoppage time from a cross.
Meikle 6 Sent a couple of efforts over the bar. Generally crossing from Briscoe and Meikle needs to improve.
Hutchinson 8 Another early goal, and had one disallowed for offside. Looks so classy.
Wright 6 OK but two poor efforts at goal. Showed good skill on occasion. I would expect Green or Speight to replace him on Tuesday.

Sub Line Up:
Green (for Wright, 64) - Scored the crucial equaliser. Hopefully this will restore his confidence and see him back to his best.
Speight (for Hutchinson, 69) - Things didn’t quite fall for him.
Rhead (for Meikle, 76) - Great knock down for Green to score.
Subs not used: Murray, Daniel.
Opposition Line Up:
Mark Tyler; Ronnie Henry, Simon Ainge, Janos Kovacs, Lathaniel Rowe-Turner; Alex Lawless, Arnaud Mendy, Jonathan Smith, Jake Howells; Scott Rendell, Andre Gray (Stuart Fleetwood 90+5). Substitutes not used: Dean Beckwith, JJ O’Donnell, Matt Robinson, Dean Brill.
Ross Joyce (Billingham) 6 Got the disallowed goals right. Not bad.

Season 12/13 Reports