IT`S DISASTER AS STAGS LOSE UNBELIEVABLE GAME
Mansfield 2 Carlisle 3
Lawrence 29 pen, 45 (and missed penalty 90+3)
Gray 12, Preece 21, Langmead 66
Att 5,361 (996 from Carlisle)
Defeat for the Stags coupled with wins for Yeovil and Northampton leave Mansfield in real danger of missing out on the play-offs.
The Stags still need 3 points to make sure of the play-offs from the final 2 games, though if Oxford fail to win next Saturday, then a draw against Northampton on the final Saturday will, on its own, guarantee a play-off place - Martin
Match Statistics (Stags/Carlisle)
9 Goal Attempts 9
5 On target 5
3 Off target 4
1 Woodwork 0
7 Corners 6
7 Fouls 14
1 Offside 3
Ananova: FT: Mansfield 2 Carlisle 3
Kevin Langmead kept Carlisle's survival hopes alive as they sealed a dramatic 3-2 win at Mansfield.
But it still took an injury time penalty save from keeper Matt Glennon to deny Mansfield's Liam Lawrence a late equaliser.
Former Mansfield captain Kevin Gray headed Carlisle in front and they extended that lead when Andy Preece blasted home an 18-yard free-kick.
But Lawrence pulled one back with a twice-taken spot-kick, after Gray had brought him down, netting his 12th penalty of the season.
Lawrence then equalised but Langmeade restored Carlisle's lead after good work from Foran, before Glennon produced his stoppage time heroics.
Keeper Matt Glennon was Carlisle's hero as his injury time penalty save kept the Cumbrians in the football league for another week.
Glennon dived to his right to beat away Liam Lawrence's last gasp spot kick after United's brave fight to avoid relegation looked to be over.
Had Lawrence converted his second penalty of the match, awarded for a push by the clumsy Tom Cowan, Carlisle would have been relegated in their centenary year.
After losing a two-goal first-half lead United grabbed the winner in the 66th minute to end Mansfield's hopes of automatic promotion.
Substitute Kelvin Langmead, who had only been on the pitch for five minutes, fired in from 12 yards after good work by Richie Foran.
Afterwards, delighted Carlisle manager Paul Simpson said: "Carlisle has lived on fairy-tales for the last six or seven years, can this be another one? We've kept the dream alive for another week.
"We had to get a win today and the players showed great character." United, roared on by 1,000 travelling fans in a game both sides had to win for vastly different reasons, had started with an adventurous 4-3-3 formation.
Their bold move paid dividends from their third corner in the first 12 minutes when former Mansfield captain Kevin Gray powerfully headed in Brendan McGill's deep flag kick.
Within four minutes they had survived three remarkable scares in a sensational start.
In the 14th minute Lawrence and Junior Mendes carved out a golden chance for Colin Larkin but the unmarked striker hammered against the underside of the bar from six yards.
Then Lawrence's powerful header was cleared off the line a minute later by Foran and just 60 seconds later Lawrence was again denied by a flying Glennon save.
Those stops looked vital in the 21st minute when Andy Preece extended Carlisle's lead.
His 30-yard free kick flew over the bar but the referee ordered the kick to be retaken for encroachment and moved the ball 10 yards forward.
At the second attempt Preece made no mistake, hammering his low drive into the bottom corner from 20 yards.
In a remarkable game Mansfield grabbed a 27th minute lifeline when Gray tripped Lawrence in the area.
United's gamesmanship delayed the spot kick and Cowan was booked for kicking a divot out of the ground by the penalty spot.
But Lawrence eventually netted his 12th penalty of the season, but only after he was ordered to retake his successful first kick.
Another spectacular Glennon save kept out Wayne Corden's 40th minute blockbuster but in the last minute of first half injury time Glennon was beaten again as Lawrence poked in the equaliser from six yards.
Stags blow promotion hopes against bottom club
MANSFIELD Town blew their automatic promotion chances with a disastrous 3-2 home defeat by battling bottom club Carlisle United at Field Mill this afternoon.
And with two tough games against in-form sides Huddersfield and Northampton to finish the season, the consolation prize of a place in the play-offs is far from a formality for Stags.
But for the in-form visitors it took them a step nearer to yet another of their fairytale 'Great Escapes'.
They knew defeat would probably see them lose their 76-year membership of the Football League in their Centenary season and romped into a brave 2-0 first half lead.
But Stags were level by the break thanks to a brace from Liam Lawrence.
And it was Carlisle who provided the afternoon's two heroes after the break as substitute Kevin Langmead grabbed a 66th minute winner just five minutes after coming on and then keeper Matt Glennon saved a stoppage time penalty from Lawrence.
"There are a lot of upset people in that dressing room," said manager Keith Curle.
"But can still go for the play-offs now and that would still be a great achievement that shouldn't be underestimated. We have a great opportunity and it will be a big game at Huddersfield next week where we know we need a result.
"In the first half we just had a look at Carlisle for the first 20 minutes which wasn't what I wanted and we ended up 2-0 down.
"Then we decided to play the way I wanted and caused them untold problems. Second half I told them to carry on doing those things and they didn't
"To a neutral it was a great advert. But as a manager it was frustrating. Our attacking play caused them problems but our defending caused us problems.
"You can't say there was a lack of effort or desire from my players. But individual errors got punished and we just didn't carry on doing the simple things."
Stags made one change from the side that won at Boston last week with Junior Mendes replacing Andy White up front.
In a tense few opening minutes amid a superb atmosphere, Stags were first to threaten as Day sliced a scissor kick wide from Lawrence's cross.
But a break down the left and low cross from Foran saw John-Baptiste forced to clear over his own crossbar for a corner as United tried to make use of their adventurous start of using three strikers.
Two home players got heads on it to clear it as far as the edge of the box where Boyd sent a dipping volley just over the top.
United forced another corner on seven minutes which Pilkington punched clear. But again Mansfield allowed the ball to run to the lurking Boyd and this time he mis-hit a low shot wide.
Carlisle cleared a low Lawrence cross before racing back up field to win another flag kick.
But from this one they snatched the lead. McGill put it over from the left and former Stags skipper Gray rose superbly to send a header just inside Pilkington's left hand post.
Within two minutes Stags Larkin wasted a glorious chance of putting Mansfield quickly level.
A flowing move on the right saw Lawrence feed Mendes who crossed low into the path if the incoming Larkin. With the goal at his mercy, it needed only a tap-in. But he went for the big, spectacular finish and, from six yards, saw the ball come back of the crossbar.
Shortly after a Corden cross offered Lawrence a free header which he powered past Glennon only to see Foran kick off the line.
The action swung from end to end but it was Lawrence again who forced a good parry from Glennon with a powerful shot after a free kick found him in the box.
Carlisle won a free kick almost 30 yards from goal which Preece blazed just over. However, Curtis had failed to retreat the full 10 yards and was booked with referee Mr Mathieson also moving the ball forward 10 yards to the edge of the box.
This time Preece got his sights right and sent a bullet kick through everyone into the top left hand corner to put the Cumbrians 2-0 up on 21 minutes.
However Stags won a penalty on 27 minutes which got them back into the game - eventually.
Lawrence was brought down by Gray as he shaped to put the ball away from a Corden cross.
Carlisle tried every bit of gamesmanship possible to put Lawrence off.
Eventually he curled the ball inside the right post but the referee had presumably spotted an encroachment and ordered the kick to be taken again.
Cowan was booked for standing in front of the ball to further hinder Stags as Lawrence tried to take the kick.
Eventually he curled it inside the same post but, as he turned to celebrate, was tripped by Foran.
Players ran in as events looked set to turn ugly. But it all calmed down, Murphy and Foran were booked and Stags were back in what was rapidly becoming a breathtaking thriller.
It was Lawrence's 19th goal of the season and his 12th penalty success.
Corden almost found an equaliser five minutes from the break but was thwarted by another good save from Glennon. Larkin fed MacKenzie who pulled the ball back across goal. It went behind three incoming yellow shirts but found Corden who crashed a shot at goal which Glennon turned away with an up stretched arm.
Lawrence was booked for taking a dive shortly after an opponent was only warned for it which angered home fans.
However Lawrence had a smile back on his with an equaliser on the stroke of half-time.
Mendes put the ball into the box from the right and Lawrence managed to squeeze it home between Cowan and Glennon before either Carlisle player could get there.
The second half began on a lower key and within seven minutes Carlisle introduced Arnison for McGill in midfield.
Corden and Shelley were then lectured for 'afters' as the United man prevented a Corden cross as both players slid in.
A definite shove from Cowan on Lawrence brought the Stags winger down. But Lawrence made a meal of his fall and the referee gave Carlisle a goal kick as tempers continued to fray.
The first goal chance of the half came on 57 minutes as Preece guided a header comfortably wide of Pilkington's left hand post.
Two minutes later MacKenzie won two 50-50 challenges and his momentum took him into a shooting position, blazing wide as another challenge came in.
Great work from Foran set up a cross for Murphy which ended up bobbling wide off three or four players that leapt for it.
United made a change up front as Langmead replaced Farrell.
MacKenzie did enough to put off Boyd as he made space to fire over from 20 yards while John-Baptiste got in the way of a Murphy volley as Carlisle piled on the pressure.
Stags responded by swapping D'Jaffo for Mendes up front.
But it was the visitors' substitute, Langmead, who made the impact with a goal inside five minutes of joining the action.
Foran was allowed to get down the left, despite challenges from Lawrence and Hasell. He then passed inside for Langmead who had time and space to steady himself before beating Pilkington with a low shot from 12 yards.
Carlisle almost stung Stags from a quick break but, with Pilkington having slipped as he tried to get back into his goal, Preece could only chip the ball into his arms.
Mansfield hit back and in between two corners, Lawrence sent a hard, low cross agonisingly through everyone in the six-yard box.
Langmead again tested Pilkington after a neat pass from Preece. But the angle was tight and the keeper well placed.
Mansfield began to turn the screw and United had to survive two more corners while a scramble saw a MacKenzie shot charged down.
Curle changed formation to three at the back for the last seven minutes as Disley came on for Vaughan.
In stoppage time Lawrence tried his luck from 35 yards with a curler that passed just inches wide of the far post.
But high drama was still left as three minutes into the added on time, Lawrence won another penalty, going down under a clumsy challenge from Tom Cowan.
But it was to be unlucky 13 for Lawrence as Glennon threw himself full length to his right to turn it away and preserve Carlisle's League status for another week.
Carlisle boss Paul Simpson was understandably elated.
He said: "Talk about making it hard for ourselves!
"We knew we had to come here and win and it didn't matter how we did it. I didn't care if it was ugly, superb football, fighting or laying down.
"Carlisle have lived on fairy tales for six or seven years - can this be another? We've kept that little dream alive and we can take that into our next game.
"We can't worry about other people as we can't affect that, only what we are going to do and we have got a chance.
"If it come the end of the games it's not enough then we know why. That's down to what's gone before and we have to accept that.
"There is a fantastic spirit and attitude here and I am delighted for them and also the fans who were behind that goal today. I am sure their hearts dipped when Mansfield got it back to 2-2 and when we conceded that penalty at the end.
"We showed character. I have gone through every emotion imaginable since I took over. But I told the players the emotions they felt at the end of this one were only a fraction of what they would feel if we achieve what we have set out to do."
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