Not Known 14   White 68, Lazarus 81

Wednesday 1st August 2001

Pre-Season Friendly

Attendance:  125

Stags began with a fairly strong line-up and included both Lee Williamson and Stuart Reddington, players who had been suffering from slight injuries.  Allen Tankard made his first start for his new club, at left back, with David Jervis alongside ex-Lincoln United man Reddington at the centre of the Stags defence.

Stags opening chance came just after the ten minute mark.  Tankard put in a great cross from the left and from 6 yards Andy White somehow headed wide.  However, the Stags were rocked at the other end when the home side took the lead with a long range effort that deflected past the stranded Bingham.  Stags then missed a series of chances, with the home keeper producing heroics to keep the Stags at bay.  First Ghaichem took the ball down superbly but hit his shot wide, then a great one two between Williams and Bradley saw Williams clean through but somehow the winger fired his shot over the bar.  Next to try his luck was Lincoln old boy Reddington who saw his header from Williamson's corner tipped over the bar.  From the resulting corner the ball fell to Reddington again, this time he was less accurate shooting well wide.  Williams cut in from the right beat a defender and hit a low shot straight at the keeper whilst Bradley was put through, rounded the keeper but his shot lacked power and was cleared off the line.  This was Bradley's last action as he appeared to take a slight knock, he was replaced by Danny Bacon.  Within 5 minutes Bacon almost equalised, turning Williams' fine cross on to the inside of the post, the ball falling into the relieved grasp of the home keeper.  As the half drew to a close Lawrence's cross found Bacon who saw the keeper pull off a terrific point blank save.

Half-time:  1-0

At half time Jamie Clarke replaced Stuart Reddington.  The opening 15 minutes of the half were fairly even, with neither side creating anything of note.  Just past the hour another cross from Tankard was headed over by White and minutes later Tankard tried his luck himself, his shot deflecting wide.  From the corner, Williams' long range shot deflected to White whose shot was blocked by the almost unbeatable United keeper.  On 67 minutes Williamson and Lawrence were replaced by Lomas and Lazarus.  Within a minute of the changes the Stags drew level as long cross by Asher found White who headed over the advancing keeper.  Jervis was then replaced by Andrews and the new sub almost paid for an error on the edge of his box, being caught in possession but the shot was wide of Bingham's goal.  On 81 minutes the Stags got the winner, and a fine goal it was.  Picking up the ball some 20 yards Lazarus neatly turned and curled a great left foot shot past the United keeper.  The Stags had a scare at the other end but a terrific cross from the right was headed just wide.

All in all the Stags certainly deserved the win and perhaps against a less inspired keeper and with more clinical finishing would have won more comfortably than the score suggest.  A calm "debut" for Tankard and the rest of the Stags squad were certainly given a competitive work out.  Man of the match is again tough, with so many changes at times disrupting the flow of the game, but Andy White battled hard all game and deserved his goal.  A final point about the welcome we got by the officials of Lincoln United, one official walked round the ground to chat to all the visiting supporters - nice touch in these days of the commercialisation of football  I reckon!!

Stagsnet Man of the Match:  Andy White


Stags:  Bingham 6, Asher 6, Tankard 7, Jervis 7, Reddington 7, Williams 6, Williamson 6, Lawrence 6, Ghaichem 6, Bradley 7, White 7.  Subs:  Bacon 7 (for Bradley), J Clarke 7 (for Reddington), Lazarus 7 (for Williamson), Lomas 7 (for Lawrence), Rew 6 (for Ghaichem), Holyoak 6 (for Asher)