STAGS UNLUCKY NOT TO BEAT SOUTHEND
Mansfield Town 1 - 1 Southend United
Murray 52. Gower 57.
Attendance: 3894 (401 from Southend)
Martin Shaw and Jeff Barnes at Field Mill
Man of the Match: Adam Murray - tight call between several players, but Murray pinches it with the goal.
Stagsnet report now in the Match Centre
Observer report by Steve Hartshorn:
Stags had to settle for just one point when they deserved all three against high-flying Southend United at Field Mill last weekend. Adam Murray gave The Stags the lead on 52 minutes, only for Gower to equalise in controversial circumstances for the visitors 5 minutes later. United though were grateful for the brilliance of Daryl Flahavan in the Shrimpers goal who single-handedly kept the visitors in the game.
The Stags gave a full debut to left back, Gareth Jelleyman, moving Jake Buxton to his preferred right back role, whilst Alex Neil was placed in the centre of midfield to partner, Adam Murray.
In a surprising fairly open game, it was obvious from the start that both sides were eager to register a win, but it was Mansfield who were to create the better opportunities throughout the game.
The first real chance came when Alex Neil declined to shoot and instead played the ball through to Colin Larkin, who unfortunately was deemed offside.
Adam Murray was next to threaten the visitors goal a couple of minutes later, but his powerful shot sailed past Flahavan's left hand upright.
On 17 minutes, Stags had good claims for a penalty turned down. The Speedy, Simon Brown having his cut back seemingly blocked by a visitor's hand, but Referee, Mr Friend waved play on.
With 22 minutes on the clock The Stags were grateful for some woeful finishing from former centre-half, Adam Barrett. A low Southend corner was fired in and when it looked easier to score, Barrett somehow managed to fire over from all of six yards.
Flahavan came to United's rescue on 25 minutes when after good play from Mansfield, Larkin found himself baring down on the Shrimpers goal, it looked to all that the Stags striker's effort would end up in the back of the net but a fine one handed save from the United Custodian pushed the ball past the right hand post and out for a corner.
Stags continued to create the better of the chances and could consider themselves unlucky not to have gone in at half time at least one goal to the good. Buxton hit a half volley that was deflected inches over the bar and from the resulting corner, Gareth Jelleyman was denied a debut goal by the brilliance of Flahavan who dived low to his right to save Jelleyman's goal bound header.
The start of the 2nd half saw the introduction of Derek Asamoah for the slightly out of form, Colin Larkin as Stags continued to be the side who looked the more likely to break the deadlock with both Corden and Barker going close in the opening minutes.
The breakthrough came on 52 minutes when The Stags scored a goal of great simplicity. A free kick taken by Alex John-Baptiste was superbly headed into the path of the in rushing and unmarked, Adam Murray who made no mistake.
The Stags were on fire and Flahavan once again came to the Shrimpers rescue to tip over a superb header from John-Baptiste.
Stags were to lament Flahavan's good form just four minutes later when in controversial circumstances, United fashioned an equaliser. A challenge just outside the area from Murray was deemed a foul by the Referee, United took the free kick quickly and the ball ended up at the feet of Mark Gower who powerfully shot into the roof of the net, giving Pilkington no chance whatsoever.
As the 2nd half ticked on, it was Mansfield who looked the more likely side to create what would have been a winning goal, Flahavan being the far busier of the two keepers, and Stags wasting a number of chances.
Late on in the half, Southend introduced Tesfaye Brambell and it was he who had the visitor's best chance of nicking all three points but he failed to make contact from a cross from Nicolau.
As the game entered its final few minutes, Richie Barker once again found Adam Murray with a header, but on this occasion, Murray fired his volley just over the bar.
At the final whistle the visitors went over to celebrate with their supporters, obviously grateful for their hard earned point whilst the home support left the ground a little disappointed not to have seen a deserved Stags victory, but heartened by yet another improved performance against on the Coca Cola League 2's better sides.
This weekend The Stags make the short trip to Sincil Bank to take on Lincoln City, hoping to continue their run of just one defeat in eight games.
Observer Man of the match – Richie Barker. Tireless performance and 110% effort throughout.
Mansfield Town 1 Southend United 1
by Mark Wallis
SOUTHEND United dropped points for a third successive game, drawing 1-1 at Field Mill against Mansfield Town on Saturday afternoon, although Steve Tilson's side remain fourth with sides around them also slipping up…
Boss Tilson was forced to make some changes from the side which drew a goalless blank with Notts County seven days earlier, with Carl Pettefer switching into the centre of midfield for the suspended Mark Bentley whilst Mark Gower returned from injury on the right flank. A switch between the sticks saw injured Bart Griemink replaced by Darryl Flahavan. Farnborough Town goalkeeper Craig Holloway found himself on the bench following his loan move and Michael Kightly, frsh from a three-month stint with the Hampshire Club, also warmed the bench.
Following a vastly disappointing home defeat against the Stags less than a month earlier, in which United had a perfectly fine goal ruled out for offside in stoppage time, Southend were undoubtedly looking for something more positive in this return fixture. However Mansfield are a difficult side to play against, for their appalling sportsmanship more than anything else, and with the Shrimpers struggling to get into the match in the opening period, the 401 travelling supporters generally went home pleased with a point.
It was in fact the visitors from Essex who created the best of the early chances. Freddy Eastwood drove a low shot into the body of goalkeeper Kevin Pilkington following a forceful Lawrie Dudfield run and cut-back before Adam Barrett, who spent two seasons with the Stags, shot over the top from 15 yards after a low Gower corner had been touched on by Dudfield.
Returning shot-stopper Flahavan was required to push a Colin Larkin shot around the post after the frontman had all too easily shrugged off the challenge of Spencer Prior.
Flahavan then grabbed hold of Simon Brown's curling shot at the second attempt before making an impressive diving stop to palm Alex-John Baptiste's 15 yard downward header around the upright.
Half-time: Mansfield Town 0 Southend United 0
United put in a much improved performance after the interval, but that wasn't until they had gone behind on 53 minutes. A dubiously awarded free kick saw Baptiste float a long ball into the penalty area where referee Kevin Firend somehow missed Barrett being man-handled to the floor by substitute Derek Asamoah before an unmarked Adam Murray picked up the loose ball and stabbed home from eight yards. (1-0)
It took the determined Shrimpers just five minutes to draw level though, and it came from a free kick of their own, which ironically was also rather harshly awarded. Gower quickly taking the kick into the path of Eastwood who sprinted into the box before returning the ball to Gower with a neat cut-back, and the skilful wide man dashed clear of his marker before thumping the ball into the roof of the net from ten yards. (1-1)
As Southend began to grow in confidence and come forward in numbers, Mansfield did catch the Shrimpers on the break, but they caused few problems as Wayne Corden's speculative angled effort flew over the top and the ever-dangerous Asamoah failed to harm Flahavan with a low shot.
The vociferous Essex-based support was up in arms when referee Friend failed to award their side a penalty when Wayne Gray, fresh from the bench, was pulled to the ground by Luke Dimech as he chased a through ball.
Still incensed by the failed penalty appeal, fellow substitute Tesfaye Bramble came within inches of poking home a winner on 87 minutes when he just fell short of touching hpme a superb low Nicky Nicolau cross.
Southend will be grateful for their point though, but with Darlington, who visit Roots Hall next week, and Northampton Town, to whom United visit in three weeks, breathing down the Shrimpers neck and just two points behind, it is crucial that Tilson's men grab all three points against the Quakers next weekend. However, before then Southend have another huge match waiting for them as Swindon Town, from Division Two, visit in the Area semi-final of the LDV Vans Trophy. Defeat would mean somebody will be taking out crown of Southern Area Champions, and we don't want that!
MANSFIELD TOWN...(0) 1 SOUTHEND UNITED…(0) 1
Football League Division Three, Saturday, 22nd January 2005 @ Field Mill
Goals: Mansfield: Murray 53 (stabbed in following a Baptiste free kick; inside area; timed at 52:31). Southend: Gower 58 (smashed into roof of the net following Eastwood cut back; inside area; timed at 57:41).
Bookings: Southend: Pettefer (84 – foul).
Total Goal Efforts: Mansfield 15, Southend 5
Shots/headers on target: Mansfield 6, Southend 2
Shots/headers off target: Mansfield 8, Southend 3
Blocked shots: Mansfield 1, Southend 0
Hit Woodwork: Mansfield 0, Southend 0
Corners: Mansfield 11, Southend 9
Free Kicks: Mansfield 15, Southend 8
Caught Offside: Mansfield 1, Southend 1
First Half: 46:15. Second Half: 47:09. Total: 93:24.
Indicated stoppage time: First Half: 1 minute (Actual: 01:15), Second Half: 2 minutes (02:09)
Referee: Kevin Friend (Leicestershire FA), 5 out of 10 (General Control 2/5, Application of Laws 1/3, Personality & Appearance 2/2)
NB. Shots/headers on target includes all goals and Free Kicks includes all penalties.
Football First match report:
By Tom Phillips
transcribed by carole
Gower denies Stags
MANSFIELD caretaker manager Carlton Palmer was left frustrated as high-flying Southend snatched an equaliser to deny Stags all three points from an excellent display.
The home side dominated the game and created most of the chances, finally going ahead through Adam Murray early in the second-half.
But they were caught napping by a quick free-kick six minutes later as Mark Gower levelled for the promotion chasing Shrimpers.
Palmer, who is expected to be appointed full-time this week said: “We played very well and there was not a lot more we could have done.
“I don't care what anyone says, if some supporters have gone home disappointed then I don't know what they expect.”
And end-to-end first half saw Freddy Eastwood spurn a hat-trick of chances, the best after 22 minutes when he blazed over from eight yards after a corner.
But, the Stags finally got the goal they deserved after 53 minutes as Richie Barker nodded Alex John-Baptiste's free-kick down for Adam Murray to volley home.
Flahavan superbly tipped over a John-Baptiste header two minutes later and that proved pivotal as, four minutes later, Gower exchanged passes with Eastwood from a quickly taken free-kick before slotting home from eight yards.
Wayne Corden and Murray both came close, but Mansfield could not find the winner that their display deserved.
49----------Possession %---- 51
9-----------Shots on Target----5
8-----------Shots off Target----2
MATCH STATS (Stags/Shrimpers)
17 Goal Attempts 7
9 On Target 5
8 Off Target 2
0 Hit Woodwork 0
1 Offsides 2
9 Corners 8
10 Fouls 16
Stags held by high-flying Shrimpers
STAGS were held to a 1-1 home draw by promotion-chasing Southend United, despite an excellent display, this afternoon.
Lively Mansfield created the lion's share of the chances and deservedly went ahead through Adam Murray on 53 minutes.
But, after Alex John-Baptiste had a header well saved by Daryl Flahavan two minutes later, the visitors were level through Mark Gower after a quickly taken free kick on 59 minutes.
Stags caretaker-manger Carlton Palmer said: "We played very well and there was not a lot more we could have done.
"I don't care what anyone says, if some supporters have gone home disappointed then I don't know what they expect. I didn't have a bad player out there.
"Southend are fourth in the league, yet they were hanging on.
"Their keeper made four quality saves and I thought if we could score, we'd go on to get two or three.
"But they caught us sleeping in with a quick free kick and that was their only chance all afternoon.
"All we need now is a bit of luck. But we have only lost once in eight games and this keeps the run going. If we keep playing like that, there is no way we won't start winning football matches.
Stags gave a debut to new signing Gareth Jelleyman at left back.
That saw Jake Buxton move across to right back and Alex Neil into central midfield where Fraser McLachlan missed out with a knee injury.
For the fourth-placed visitors, without a win in their last two games, Flahavan started in goal in place of the injured Bart Griemink.
An interception by Wilson prevented Larkin going clear in the opening seconds, Stags achieving nothing from the resulting corner.
And another home corner produced nothing.
Then a loose pass by Neil in midfield allowed United a break which ended with Dimech turning Maher's low shot out for a Southend corner.
Neil tried to set Larkin loose instead of shooting but Larkin was caught by an offside flag.
Another Larkin break saw him square to Brown in the box. He tried to lay the ball off but the ball hit Hunt's foot and up against his hand. However, the referee waved play on as Stags looked for a penalty decision.
Southend became the first side to get a decent shot on target on 19 minutes as Dudfield pulled a pass back for Eastwood who drilled a low 20-yard shot at Pilkington.
The visitors won another corner three minutes later which Stags failed to clear and Eastwood blazed over the loose ball from seven yards.
On 24 minutes Murray played in Larkin and, after pushing the ball past one defender in the box, he tried a low finish that Flahavan just managed to turn round his far post.
Three minutes later Eastwood let fly from 20 yards again and the ball took a wicked deflection to leave Pilkington rooted as it looped just over for a corner.
A low Brown cross found Larkin but his sliced finish was easy for Flahavan to gather.
Brown produced a better effort on 34 minutes, cutting inside and letting fly from the edge of the box, Flahavan keeping it out with one hand and then clutching it above his head.
A Corden free kick from the right was headed well over by John-Baptiste on 39.
Mansfield piled on the pressure as half-time approached and won four successive corners, coming close from three of them.
The first saw Buxton's shot deflect just over, the second saw Jelleyman's header turned round at the last minute by Flahavan and the last saw Brown volley across goal and wide of the far post.
Asamoah replaced Larkin for the second half.
The home side were straight onto the attack with a flowing move down the right that earned a corner which was cleared.
Another corner followed and shortly after Corden hooked a cross-cum-shot just wide of the far post.
Then a Brown cross was headed straight at Flahavan by Barker.
But Stags finally broke through on 53 minutes. A long free kick by John-Baptiste from in his own half picked out Barker in the box. He headed down for Murray to lash home a right foot volley for his fourth goal of the season.
Two minutes later a Corden free kick saw John-Baptiste get a header on target which Flahavan did well to tip over the crossbar. That save proved crucial.
Barratt was strong as he eased Asamoah out of it in the box and the Stags' striker's pleas for a penalty were never going to be accepted.
But Southend were level on 59 minutes. Gower took a quick free kick on the left to Eastwood. Eastwood sent the ball across the box and Gower was there to steer the ball home from eight yards.
Stags won another free kick on the left which Corden curled over the angle.
Southend replied with two corners, Barrett heading over from the second.
On 69 minutes Asamoah turned Hunt and picked out Brown on the far side of the box. He put in a cross which Barker couldn't quite reach, the ball eventually reaching Corden who sent a dipping shot just over.
A good break by Stags saw Neil finally feed Brown for a low shot that Flahavan got down to save.
Brown was well wide with another effort from 20 yards shortly afterwards.
The visitors sent on Bramble and Gray for Eastwood and Gower on 75 minutes as they tried to pep up their attack.
Pettefer was booked for a foul on Murray on 84 minutes. When the kick was pumped into the box, Barker won the header and Jelleyman volleyed over as it dropped.
Dudfield set up Nicolau for a low cross from the left which passed through a crowded box to safety wide of the far post.
A long Brown cross was headed down by Barker towards Murray who poked his finish over the bar with two minutes remaining.
Southend boss Steve Tilson said: "Obviously we wanted the three points but when you look at Mansfield's recent record, they have only lost once in eight games, we have to be pleased with a point.
"Carlton Palmer has come in and done a tremendous job for them and this was always going to be a tough game.
"Going 1-0 down I thought we showed character to bounce back and get a point.
"We have some tough games ahead of us now and if we can dig in and still be around the play-off places with 10 games to go then we have a great chance."
Stags now prepare for two successive away local derbies in two weeks, starting at Lincoln City next Saturday.
Quick-thinking Mark Gower and recalled keeper Darryl Flahavan snatched a point for promotion-hopefuls Southend as resilient Mansfield were denied their second home win in eight games.
The Stags, beaten just once in eight games, thought they had earned caretaker manager Carlton Palmer his second home win when Adam Murray fired in his fourth goal of the season in the 54th minute, but just four minutes later, after a string of fine Flahavan saves on his first start of the season, Gower converted a controversial free- kick to grab an equaliser.
The Stags almost got off to the perfect start when Richie Barker' s pass released Colin Larkin, but the striker's poor control allowed Che Wilson to clear.
United looked the more dangerous in an entertaining start, and it needed the outstretched leg of Luke Dimech to block Kevin Maher's goal-bound shot. Then Fredy Eastwood's low drive from a well-worked right-wing move forced Kevin Pilkington into a save.
Eastwood then squandered a clear chance in the 27th minute, blazing over from close range after Mansfield failed to clear a corner. The home side almost made the high-flying visitors pay for the missed chances when Larkin's strike from an acute angle was pushed around the post by Flahavan.
In the 34th minute the keeper repeated his acrobatics to hold on to Simon Brown's 25-yard blockbuster.
In the closing minute of the half, Mansfield went close to taking the lead on three occasons from four successive corners.
First, Jake Buxton's powerful shot was deflected over, then Flahavan dived full length to turn away a header from Mansfield debutant Gareth Jelleyman before Brown volleyed narrowly wide.
Mansfield's pressure finally told nine minutes into the second half when Barker nodded down an Alex Baptiste free-kick for Murray to crash home.
Two minutes later goal-maker Baptiste almost turned scorer when his fierce header from a Wayne Corden free-kick was tipped over by the flying keeper.
Within two more minutes United were level. Gower won a free-kick, and getting up after taking it quickly, raced into the area unmarked to receive Eastwood's pass and fire the ball into the net.
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