{ match reports }
 
Stagsnet wishes you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year
Season 13/14 Stagsnet Match Report
Football League - Sky Bet League Two
Bury  
0 - 0
 Mansfield Town
 
 Dempster sent off 62
Attendance: 2518 (351 from Mansfield)
 
Date: 22 October 2013

STAGS DEFEND WELL FOR A POINT AFTER DEMPSTER SENT OFF

Martin Shaw at Gigg Lane

Mansfield Town picked up a second 0-0 draw in three days away from home at Bury this evening. The Stags were very positive in the first half and on top for most of it, and were denied a penalty when the referee gave a free kick outside the box for a foul on Palmer; review of the DVD confirmed what everyone in the press box could see with their own eyes that the foul was a full yard inside the box. The Stags had other good chances in the first half for debutant Blake, Rhead, Palmer and Daniel but couldn’t find the net while Marriott made one great save. After a quiet start to the second half, the game exploded on 62 minutes when Dempster was given a straight red for a foul. From review of the DVD, Dempster went for the ball but missed it and got the man instead, and there would be little chance of overturning the decision in my opinion should an appeal be launched. After that, Bury gained the initiative and forced the Stags back, creating a number of chances while Marriott was in superb form with some fine saves and outstanding handling. Despite an incredible ten minutes of stoppage time played, the Stags held on for a deserved point. Possibly the Stags defended a bit too deep in those dying stages and manager Cox was desperately trying to get them to push up but to no avail. Overall a very fine defensive display even against the odds after the sending off, but with a proven goalscorer in the side this could still have been a victory, a point well understood by Paul Cox after the game as he again said how keen he is to get a proven goalscorer into the club, but it’s not easy to find one.

Paul Cox was sent to the stand after 8 of the ten added minutes. Paul Cox explained afterwards that the fourth official claimed he called him a cheat, but Cox denied he said that. There was a poisonous atmosphere in the main stand as a number of fans tried to get at Cox, but he was whisked away to a safer area nearer the directors box.

The Stags had Jennings booked in the second half, his fifth yellow of the season which will see him suspended on Saturday, and Riley limped off with an achilles injury that might keep him out for some while (he said he is likely to find out tomorrow the extent of the injury and we therefore keep our fingers crossed). With Tafazolli already injured, this leaves only Sutton and Beevers likely to be available out of defenders who have played recently. Options for a place on Saturday are Black and McCombe, and possibly a recall from Forest Green for Pilkington.

The point takes Mansfield into the play-off zone with 13 games played, a highly creditable position at this stage of the season.


Paul Cox made three changes from the side that gained a point at Torquay on Saturday with Jack Blake (on loan from Nottingham Forest) in for his debut, Daniel and Palmer replacing Sutton, Murtagh and Stevenson. It was a 4-4-2 formation with Clucas in right midfield, Daniel in left midfield, and Blake in the centre of midfield. On the bench, Godfrey Poku replaced Howell and was later to make his Stags debut 15 months after joining the club.

There were a number of former managers in the stand including Brian Horton, Paul Dickov, Flitcroft and former Stags manager Peter Shirtliff.

The Stags started positively and were on top for most of the first half. On 9 minutes, a good tackle by Jennings near his own corner flag and he set Daniel away on a good run, Daniel found Blake who squared the ball but Clucas lost it.

On 11 minutes, a good one two between Clucas and Blake down the right and Clucas’ shot was deflected to Daniel whose cross-shot was saved.

On 12 minutes, Daniel cut in from the left and his right foot shot was blocked.

Then on 14 minutes, Blake’s right foot shot from the edge of the box from the right was tipped wide by the keeper.

Palmer did well on 21 minutes to get in a cross from the right which was headed wide under pressure by Rhead. On 23 minutes, Clucas carried on despite a foul and his shot was scuffed and went through to the keeper.

The Stags were completely on top but you felt that they needed a goal.

Beevers made a good clearance under pressure on 24 minutes.

Bury’s first chance of the game came on 26 minutes when Soares got past Jennings and fired over the bar. There was good tracking back from Blake to thwart an attack on 28 minutes. Then on 30 minutes, Harrad’s deflected shot was straight at Marriott.

There was a huge controversy on 34 minutes when the referee gave a free kick outside the box for a foul on Palmer; review of the DVD confirmed what everyone in the press box could see with their own eyes that the foul was a full yard inside the box. Huge protests from the Stags players were in vain. Jennings took the resulting free kick but it was straight into the wall.

On 37 minutes, Clucas’ stab at goal was saved after Rhead hooked the ball on. Then on 39 minutes, there was great play from Jennings to get in a cross from a tight space. Palmer took one touch to control the ball and stabbed it wide.

On 41 minutes, a chance for Daniel as he brilliantly chested the ball down on the edge of the box with his first touch and with his second touch, he shot straight at the keeper. He would have been better trying to lift it over the keeper.

Bury had a rare chance on 43 minutes when Beeley crossed from the right and Harrad’s first time shot brought a great save from Marriott to push away for a corner.

On 44 minutes, a magical ball from Clucas on the half way line found McGuire who in turn found Blake but Blake’s cross was a waste.

It was a very good half for the Stags who were on top for almost all of it and unlucky not to be ahead especially with the ridiculous decision of the referee not to award a penalty.

Half time 0-0

On 52 minutes, a good break from Daniel down the left to earn a corner. From the corner, taken by Jennings, Riley nodded down, Clucas tried a back heel at goal, it rebounded out to Blake who fired over. On 57 minutes, a free kick from the half line take by Jennings found Rhead who nodded down but straight to the keeper.

The game exploded on 62 minutes when Dempster was given a straight red for a foul. From review of the DVD, Dempster went for the ball but missed it and got the man instead, and there would be little chance of overturning the decision in my opinion should an appeal be launched.

Palmer was sacrificed as Sutton replaced him to move into central defence as the Stags moved to a 4-4-1 formation.

On 65 minutes, Sedgwick’s low shot was saved by Marriott low down. A great tackle by Daniel on 67 minutes to thwart an attack. Bury were close to the lead on 68 minutes as Beeley’s cross from the right skimmed off the top of Riley’s head and sub Mayor headed over at the far post. Marriott did well to save a low cross from Mayor on 71 minutes.

Riley had to hobble out of the action on 73 minutes and it brought a debut for Poku, 15 months after joining the Stags. Beevers moved to centre half and McGuire slotted in at right back.

On 74 minutes, a long range shot from Soares was straight at Marriott. Then on 82 minutes, a blockbuster from Soares from 30 yards was tipped over by Marriott. Bury came close a minute later as a superb cross to the far post was headed just over by Hylton.

Andrew replaced Rhead on 84 minutes. Bury were denied a possible free kick on the edge of the box on 86 minutes as the referee waved play on but he did bring the play back and book Jennings for an earlier challenge - significant as it was Jennings’ fifth yellow card of the season.

On 87 minutes, a good punch away by Marriott as the Stags were defending well under pressure. However, the ball kept coming back and Cox was desperately telling the Stags to get out from defence further up the field.

Seven minutes of time were added on. On 90+3, a shot from Soares deflected wide off his own player.

On 90+8, Cox was sent to the stand. Cox explained afterwards that the fourth official claimed he called him a cheat, but Cox denied he said that.

Finally the referee blew the final whistle after 9 minutes and 55 seconds of injury time.

After the game Bury caretaker boss Ronnie Jepson said he felt Mansfield came for just a point and called the performance of Paul Cox's team "ridiculous". He said: "We had a great game of football on Saturday against Portsmouth and then Mansfield just wanted to look for set-pieces and slow the game down. It was like a testimonial at times because of the pace they were going at. It's ridiculous and everybody gets frustrated. Seven minutes were added on but you could've added another three minutes from within that seven minutes for the amount of time-wasting that went on. It was incredible. It's not a great spectacle. I don't mind if it's at the end of the game but it was throughout the game.” I’d suggest Jepson reviews the match DVD again or watches the highlights I have put together for StagsPlayer, as the Stags first half performance was very good indeed, outplaying his Bury side and playing some attractive football. After the sending-off, Mansfield were indeed pushed back and played for time, as most teams would in that position.

Man of the match: Jack Blake


Report by: Martin Shaw at Gigg Lane



Line Up:
Marriott 8 Very good game with some great saves and outstanding handling.
Beevers 7.5 Defended well, including a great clearance early on under pressure.
Dempster 5 Played very well but then correctly sent off for a very badly judged challenge that cost the team the chance of three points. Very out of character.
Riley 8 Very good, winning everything at the back. Limped off with an achilles injury that might keep him out for some while (he said he is likely to find out tomorrow the extent of the injury and we therefore keep our fingers crossed).
Jennings 7 Defended solidly, including some good tackles. Allowed Soares a shot at goal in the first half which he put over the bar. Poor free kick from edge of the box that was straight into the wall.
Clucas 7.5 Some sublime skill on occasions including a magical pass just before half time. Linked well with Blake.
McGuire 7 Worked hard, and then did well at right back for the final half hour.
Blake 8 Impressive debut. Linked well with Clucas early on, and looked positive going forward. Then dug in well when the going got tough after the red card.
Daniel 7.5 Very positive in the first half, and some good tracking back.
Palmer 7 So unlucky not to earn a penalty. Some good play with Rhead. Should have scored.
Rhead 7 Good game and so close to a goal in the first half.
Sub Line Up:
Sutton (for Palmer, 64) - Slotted in well when the Stags were under the cosh.
Poku (for Riley, 73) - Made his Stags debut 15 months after joining the club. Did well, chasing players down, though gave away one silly free kick. A hard situation to come into for his Stags debut.
Andrew (for Rhead, 84) - Won some good headers in his own box.
Subs not used: Murtagh, Hutchinson, Meikle, Stevenson.
Opposition Line Up:
Jensen; Beeley, Cameron, Edjenguélé, Mustoe; Sedgwick (Forrester 76), Procter, Miller (Mayor 46), Soares; Harrad, Hylton. Subs not used: Hinds, Holden, Rooney, Charles-Cook, Walker.
Referee:
Andy Haines 4 Very poor. Probably got the red for Dempster right but the decision to give a free kick outside the box for a foul on Palmer that was a yard inside the box was astonishing. Some other poor decisions.


Season 13/14 Reports