Mansfield Town 1 York City 0
Mansfield were unchanged from the team that had drawn with Exeter City at Field Mill 4 days earlier. York included former Cardiff striker and one-time postman John Williams who scored twice against the Stags at Ninian Park last season.
Mansfield kicked off the first half playing against a 50 miles per hour wind. The home side started well and looked lively in the opening 15 minutes. First they had claims for a penalty turned down as Tony Lormor broke clear of the defender and was clearly hauled down by the shirt from behind. Amazingly the referee waived away the claims. Roscoe put in a great free kick from 20 yards that was just missed by Bromby and the strikers, and went behind for a goal kick. Greenacre had a good chance in the first half when broke into the box but his powerful shot was saved.
York were usually first to the loose ball in midfield and in Barry Conlon they had easily the best player on the pitch. Conlon also had a couple of good shots from distance that Thompson did well to save. Thompson also dealt immaculately with several crosses in the first half.
Clarke shot wide of the left hand post as Mansfield finished the half with more conviction.
At half time, Stags were happy to be on level terms with the prospect of making use of the strong wind in the second half.
On 57 minutes, Mansfield took the lead. Asher played a high ball forward that bounced up on the edge of the box. As it was rising, Roscoe nipped in to flick it with his head over the advancing York keeper Mimms, who was caught out of position, as the ball sailed over his head into the empty net. It was a fine piece of quick thinking by Roscoe who made good use of the windy conditions in anticipating the flight of the ball.
For a 15 minutes spell, Stags really got on top and appeared as though they could wrap the game up. First Greenacre beat a couple of defenders and squared the ball but there was no Stags player there to benefit. Then from a back pass that keeper Mimms picked up, Stags had an indirect free kick on the bye line 10 yards from goal. Roscoe blasted the kick into the wall, and then blasted the rebound across the face of the goal and out for a throw-in. Midway through the second half, Clarke shot from close range but it was blocked on the line by a defender.
York failed to create a single worthwhile opportunity in the entire second half though there were some nervous moments for the back line as Stags midfield continually surrendered the ball, as York`s midfield worked very hard. Especially guilty was Blake. York striker Marc Williams claimed a penalty on 2 occasions. Firstly a foul was given against him for diving, and secondly as he held off 3 defenders, he went down as he shot tamely at Thompson, but it appeared he had fallen rather than been fouled. In the last 20 minutes York keeper Mimms had trouble with his kicking and this enabled to Stags to keep up some pressure. Sisson had a good run from the half way line that resulted in him being fouled 30 yards from goal, but from the resulting free kick, Roscoe smashed the ball into the wall.
Overall this was a slightly disappointing performance from Mansfield, but it was a great 3 point that takes then into 8th place and just once place of the play-offs, albeit having played more games than some of their rivals. 7 points have been taken from the 3 home games in a week, and as manager Bill Dearden commented afterwards, this has to be seen as a satisfactory return. It must be said that the conditions made things very difficult for both sides, with a very strong wind on a very cold night. Stags defence rarely looked troubled but the midfield was far too often second to the ball, with the exception of Sisson in the second half. Strikers Lormor and Greenacre looked a little lacklustre. York were marginally the better side in the first half as they had the wind behind them, but they failed to create a single clear-cut chance in the second half despite dominating the midfield in patches.
Man of the match: Glyn Thompson
Thompson 8 Faultless handling all night and a few good saves in the first half. Kicking was good in very difficult conditions.
Asher 6 Often beaten for pace by the quick John Williams and looked in trouble on a few occasions. Harshly booed on a few occasions by some home fans.
Bromby 7 Another assured performance
Andrews 6 Looked reasonably solid.
Williams 6 Didn`t really get into the game.
Roscoe 7 Clever goal and some good crosses.
Sisson 7 Pick of the midfield.
Blake 5 Looked jaded and too often second to the ball.
Clarke 6 Never got a grip of the game and failed to create much
Lormor 6 Quiet.
Greenace 6 Some good runs and tried hard as always, but little joy on the night.
Sub: Cowling (for Andrews, 87 minutes)
Subs not used: Tye, Allardyce, Kerr, Boulding.