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Season 13/14 Stagsnet Match Report
Pre-Season Friendly
Mansfield Town  
2 - 3
 Coventry City
Andrew 23, Clucas 48.
 Baker pen 36, pen 90+3, Dempster OG 62
Attendance: 1072 (121 from Coventry)
Date: 26 July 2013


Martin Shaw at the One Call Stadium

Mansfield Town conceded three sloppy goals and ended up losing a game that they should have won, but nevertheless there was also encouragement with the league season just over a week away. Sam Clucas in particular showed that he is a high class signing with another fine performance and a super goal, while trialist Calvin Andrew, up front alongside Clucas, put in an impressive display and also scored a great goal to give Paul Cox much to think about as he tries to find strikers to bolster the squad. However at the other end of the pitch, the concession of three goals was disappointing with two penalties given away by Alan Marriott and a howler of an own goal as Dempster and Marriott somehow put the ball in their own net with no Coventry player anywhere near the ball. The first half was very entertaining and quite even with both sides creating several chances, while Mansfield totally controlled the second half and deserved to lead, but two goals conceded out of the blue handed the victory to the Sky Blues.

Three trialists were in the Stags squad: Calvin Andrew, formerly of Port Vale, Crystal Palace and Luton, started up front and played most of the game. Brent McGrath, another striker, aged 22 from Australia, who has one full international cap for Australia and has made 43 appearances for Brondby in Denmark, played the last 14 minutes and had one fine effort just past the post. After the game Paul Cox said that he needed to have another look at him and hinted that that might be at Boston on Saturday afternoon. Finally Eddy Gnahore, from Birmingham City a midfielder who has played for France at U18 level, was an unused sub and might get a game at Boston. After the game, Paul Cox told me that Briscoe, Riley and trialist Amari Morgan-Smith are injured.

Coventry City, now a league one club in some turmoil, were made up of a mixture of first team regulars such as Carl Baker, who was quite superb in the first half of this game, Cyrus Christie and a few others, and youngsters and three overseas trialists. Like Mansfield they also have a game on Saturday afternoon, and were mixing their squad up.

On 2 minutes, a long throw from Beevers was headed on by Dyer, and Dempster sent a free header wide. At the other end, on 5 minutes, Fabian Martins, unmarked, sent a sitter over the bar. Then on 7 minutes, Mansett’s shot was well saved by Marriott, and his second shot was blocked. Then a minute later, Marriott saved low down from Wilson.

On 11 minutes, great one touch football from the Stags, ended with Daniel sending a weak shot wide. Then a minute later, great play from Clucas down the right, and Murray headed over. On 15 minutes, a good move from the Stags, Beevers crossed, and McGuire headed over. A good block by Dempster on 18 minutes from a Mansett shot.

The Stags were ahead on 23 minutes and a fine goal it was. Marriott played a long ball over the top, it flicked off the head of a defender under pressure from Dyer, and Calvin Andrew dispossessed a defender on the right, and curled a great left footed shot into the top left corner.

On 30 minutes, Martins sent a free header wide from a Christie cross from the right. Then on 34 minutes, a brilliant effort from Carl Baker who sent a curling left footed shot fizzing just past the left post. On 35 minutes, from a Jennings free kick, Clucas looped a header over the bar.

On 36 minutes, Coventry were level at 1-1. Wilson got into the area and went over Marriott - penalty. Baker took the spot kick and buried it into the bottom left corner. A well-taken penalty and a deserved equaliser.

On 39 minutes, Mansett headed a Baker corner over the bar. On 44 minutes, a Baker shot was saved by Marriott.

On 45+1, from a Jennings free kick, Andrew sent a free header wide. It was a good chance. Andrew was crest-fallen not to score and could barely drag himself off the pitch at half time.

Both sides had lots of chances in the first half, and it was good entertainment.

Half time 1-1

On 47 minutes, from a Baker free kick, Martins sent a free header well wide.

The Stags made it 2-1 on 48 minutes. A good flick-on by Andrew, to Clucas, who got past two defenders, onto his left foot, and buried a shot into the bottom right corner of the net from just inside the box.

On 52 minutes, Mansett got to the edge of the area, and McCombe deflected his shot wide of the right post. At the other end, on 54 minutes, a corner from Jennings from the right, McCombe headed back across goal, and Dyer fired over the bar from two yards, the ball hitting the roof of the stand. A bad miss. Then two minutes later, another Jennings corner from the right, Andrew threw himself at it and headed just over the bar. On 60 minutes, Clucas beat one defender, and his low shot from the edge of the area was superbly saved.

Coventry made it 2-2 on 62 minutes. And it was a howler of an own goal as Dempster and Marriott somehow put the ball in their own net from a low cross from the right, with no Coventry player anywhere near the ball.

On 66 minutes, Marriott came out of his area and didn’t get there. xxxxx

On 69 minutes, three changes: Meikle for Daniel, Stevenson for Andrew, and Howell for Murray. Then on 76, two more changes: Sutton for McCombe, and trialist McGrath for Dyer.

On 76 minutes, Clucas’s shirt was tugged, and suddenly there was handbags among 16 players. Clucas was booked for an over-the-top reaction.

On 78 minutes, Jennings’ corner came out to McGuire who sent a volley well wide. Then on 79 minutes, Beevers’ free kick was headed out to McGuire, 25 yards out, and his effort was well over.

On 81 minutes, Howell played the ball forward to McGrath, who cut back onto his right foot on the left, and flashed a shot just past the right post. On 82, a good move from the Stags, and finally Stevenson played it back back to Howell, who shot wide of the right post from the edge of the area.

On 86 minutes, a Beevers free kick, reached Dempster on the left, he chipped goalwards, and it was headed off the line at the right post.

Then on 88, a Jennings free kick curled in from the left, and Dempster did well to get there and headed just over.

Unbelievably and totally against the run of play, Coventry made it 3-2 on 90+2. A ball forward was flicked back towards Marriott by Dempster, but was never going to get there, Wilson got there first, flicked the ball past Marriott and Marriott tripped him. Baker scored from the spot, into the top left corner.

Mansfield had totally controlled the second half and Coventry had never threatened, but were gifted two goals.

Man of the match: Sam Clucas

Report by: Martin Shaw at the One Call Stadium

Line Up:
Marriott 5 Made a couple of very good saves in the first half, but was involved in all three goals conceded.
Beevers 6 Solid enough.
Dempster 6 Did ok. A couple of great blocks. Continues to have and miss several chances per game with his head.
McCombe 6 Possibly not the ideal partner for Dempster as neither player is blessed with pace.
Jennings 6 Set pieces were not as outstanding as against Peterborough. Had a tough job against the excellent Christie and Baker down the Coventry right
Dyer 5.5 Anonymous on the right side of midfield. One good flick on from a Beevers throw that created a chance for Dempster.
Murray 6 Ok though didn’t have his usual influence on a game.
McGuire 6 Got heavily involved in the game.
Daniel 5.5 Contributed little going forward on the left side of midfield, but did do some good tracking back to help defence.
Clucas 8 Oozes class. Another great goal.
Andrew (trialist) 7 Good game. Scored a great goal and missed a couple of other chances. Led the line well, won plenty of headers.
Sub Line Up:
Meikle (for Daniel, 69) -
Stevenson (for Andrew, 69) -
Howell (for Murray, 69) -
Sutton (for McCombe, 76) -
McGrath (trialist) (for Dyer, 76) - Had one fine effort just past the post. Looked promising, might play at Boston.
Subs not used: Black, Tafazolli, Gnahore (trialist), Clements, Speight.
Opposition Line Up:
Burge, Christie, Haynes, Barton, Finch, Orozco (Azille-Moore ht), Daniels, Baker, Manset (Maund 84), Wilson, Martins (Garner 64). Sub not used: Gott.
Gary Sutton (Lincs) 6 One or two strange decisions.

Season 13/14 Reports