STAGS 1 HUDDERSFIELD 2
Mansfield Town 1 - 2 Huddersfield Town
Brown 80. Booth 70, Mendes 90+1.
Att 1562 (141 from Huddersfield)
Stagsnet report in the Match Centre
Stags stung by old boy
CARLTON Palmer's promotion hopefuls crashed to an agonising 2-1 defeat against Huddersfield on Friday night after ex-Stag Junior Mendes fired home an injury-time winner.
The former Field Mill favourite beat debut keeper Kevin Pressman deep into stoppage time with a close-range strike to silence the boo-boys and condemn Stags to an undeserved defeat.
But, despite the heart-breaking loss, Palmer's tough-tackling team, which boasted an excellent blend of youth and experience, can take many positives for the up-coming campaign following an impressive performance.
The first half belonged to the Terriers who were unlucky not to take the lead after they had a blatant penalty turned down in the eighth minute and a David Mirfin strike harshly ruled out for offside moments later.
But Mansfield had their moments with strikers Matthew Tipton, Adam Birchall and Richie Barker all causing problems to the Yorkshire side's defence with sharp passing and fast movement.
Goal-hungry Tipton fired straight at the keeper on 13 minutes and player-manager Carlton Palmer, who controlled the central midfield area with some crunching tackles and clever passing, also went close when he headed a Gus Uhlenbeek free-kick narrowly over the bar after 21 minutes.
Experienced debutant Pressman then kept Stags in the game with a wonderful penalty save from Pavel Abbott after Rhys Day pushed rival defender Martin McIntosh in the box on the half-hour mark.
But Mansfield came to life in the second half as the hard-working Stags team dominated possession and goal chances with the gritty midfield combination of Palmer and Uhlenbeek running the show.
Boss Palmer replaced himself on the hour following an assured performance, but his determined Mansfield side continued to dominate with some silky one-touch football and nearly opened the scoring through Talbot and Barker.
However, fortunate Huddersfield stole the lead against the run of play on 70 minutes after a trademark bullet header from journeyman striker Andy Booth left Pressman with no chance.
But Stags showed a fantastic battling spirit and nearly found the deserved equaliser when substitute Adam Rundle struck the woodwork with a fierce drive from just inside the box with 15 minutes to go.
The well-earned equaliser came just moments later when pacey substitute Simon Brown sprang the Huddersfield offside trip before rounding Rachubka and rolling the ball into the unguarded net.
And it was no more than the hungry Mansfield team deserved following this highly encouraging display which combined flair, team spirit and hardwork.
But home hopes were cruelly crushed in injury time as Mendes slid home a Gary Fletcher-Taylor cross to silence the critics in style.
Mansfield: Pressman, Peers (John-Baptiste 86), Talbot (Jelleyman 73), Buxton, Day, Palmer (Coke 61), Uhlenbeek (Lloyd 73), McLachlan, Birchall (Rundle 73), Barker, Tipton (Brown 75).
Huddersfield: Rachubka, Holdsworth, Carss (Adams 71), T Clarke, McIntosh, Mirfin, Brandon, Booth (Mendes 78), Abbott ( Taylor-Fletcher 64), Worthington (Schofield 71), Hudson (Collins 64). Subs not used: Senior, McAliskey.
Mansfield Town 1, Huddersfield Town 2
Jul 23 2005
By The Huddersfield Daily Examiner
JUNIOR MENDES silenced the Field Mill boo boys with a sweet stoppage-time winner for Town last night.
Given a hostile reception at his former club when replacing Andy Booth with 12 minutes left, Mendes had the last laugh with a classy strike from Gary Taylor-Fletcher's pinpoint low cross.
The goal, exactly a minute into added time at the end, spared Town's blushes for a very patchy display in which they were pushed all the way by Carlton Palmer's fit-looking League II battlers.
Town seemed comfortable enough in the first half and were desperately unlucky not to lead as David Mirfin had what looked a perfectly good goal wiped out for offside and Pawel Abbott had a 31st-minute penalty saved by Kevin Pressman.
Peter Jackson's side also had two clear penalty claims turned down in their first meeting with Mansfield since the play-off final and had to wait until the 70th minute to take the lead.
At that stage, Mansfield were getting well on top with their neat passing and lively movement, but Town's goal against the run of play was also superbly created.
Andy Holdsworth and Chris Brandon started the move down the right and, when skipper Jon Worthington switched the play to the left, Tony Carss - operating at left wing-back - provided the ideal cross for Booth to score with a trademark close-range header which gave Pressman no chance.
If Town thought that would be the end of Mansfield's challenge, they were sadly mistaken.
Six minutes after the strike, substitute Adam Rundle could hardly believe his misfortune when a crisp rising drive beat Paul Rachubka only to bounce out off the angle of bar and post.
The chance came from Town's sloppy defending, but the lesson wasn't learned and Mansfield didn't have to wait long to level.
Only 10 minutes were left when pacy substitute Simon Brown - who scored against Town for Kidderminster a couple of seasons ago - sprang Town's woeful offside trap and sprinted clear to round Rachubka and score. It was no more than Mansfield deserved and, after an encouraging display in a 1-0 defeat at Derby last weekend, it seemed they would go one better in front of a crowd of 1,562 (including 141 hardy travelling souls).
Home hopes were crushed, however, as Mendes slid home the winner to a crescendo of boos, although there was still time for one last Town scare.
Once again Brown was the tormentor, catching Martin McIntosh on the wrong foot for the only time in the game and firing a fierce near-post shot which Rachubka did well to block.
Minus Nathan Clarke (thigh strain) it was left to McIntosh to marshall the defence - a job he did with plenty of solid quality - but Town failed to match the sharpness they've shown so far against the likes of Coventry and Harrogate Town.
Booth showed his value when meeting Carss' cross to set up the disallowed Mirfin goal and, later, when netting the first to count, and his build-up play was, as ever, very reliable.
There wasn't the same punch from midfield, however, where Mark Hudson was recalled to the senior ranks to play alongside Worthington and Brandon and Town appeared ponderous as Mansfield got to grips in the second half.
Former Arsenal youngster Adam Birchall, in fact, caused plenty of problems with his speed and trickery on the ball and he was inches away from teeing up Richard Barker with an opening goal on 54 minutes.
Town, for some reason, lost shape and rhythm and were horribly exposed on a number of occasions.
They even messed up a free-kick when Andy Holdsworth tapped and no-one responded - almost presenting Mansfield with a breakaway goal which would have been hugely embarrassing.
At least it happened in a pre- season workout, and while Jackson was unhappy with the overall display, he may well have learned more last night than in all of the games so far.
Town - Rachubka, Holdsworth, Carss (Adams 71), T Clarke, McIntosh, Mirfin, Brandon, Booth (Mendes 78), Abbott (Taylor-Fletcher 64), Worthington (Schofield 71), Hudson (Collins 64). Subs not used: Senior, McAliskey.
BATTLING STAGS LOSE IN 92ND MINUTE
Evening Post, 23 July 2005
Ex-mansfield Town striker Junior Mendes hit a late winner as Huddersfield grabbed a 2-1 win at Field Mill, despite missing a penalty.
The former Stags star came off the bench with 11 minutes to go and hit the goal in the 92nd minute to break Mansfield's hearts after a good display against higher division opposition.
The visitors had the better of the early possession, carving out a number of chances.
Martyn McIntosh then had a goal disallowed for off-side after 13 minutes as the visitors continued to dominate.
In the 18th minute, Stags new boy Matthew Tipton and Richie Barker played a neat one-two before Tipton's silky skills took him through the Terriers' defence, only to see Paul Rachubka save his fierce drive.
Gus Uhlenbeek's free kick in the 22nd minute caused chaos in the visitors' defence and Stags' player/manager Carlton Palmer got in a towering header which went just wide.
The visitors got a penalty after 31 minutes following a push on McIntosh by Rhys Day.
Abbott stepped up and smashed it right down the middle but debut keeper, Kevin Pressman, parried it wide for a corner to the jubilation of the Stags fans.
Brandon fed Abbott on the left-hand side and his rasping shot took a wicked deflection and forced Pressman into a great save.
Adam Birchall went on a good run just before the break but was brought down, and from the free kick, Tipton stung Rachhubka's fingers with a fierce drive.
In the 57th minute, Birchall got away down the left and sent a great cross to Barker, who' s shot forced another great save fom Rachubka.
But, on 70 minutes, with Stags defender Jason Talbot down injured, Huddersfield took the lead when Andy Booth was given a free header in the box after a cross from the left by Tony Carss.
On 76 minutes, substitute Adam Rundle rattled the woodwork with a thunderbolt.
After 80 minutes, Mansfield equalised when substitute Simon Brown broke clear after a great through-ball from Giles Coke.
He rounded Rachubka and slotted the ball into the empty net.
But, in the second minute of added time, Mendes latched on to a cross from the left and slotted past Pressman.
MANSFIELD: K Pressman, G Peers (A John-Baptiste 86), C Palmer (G Coke 61), R Day, G Uhlenbeek (C lloyd 73), R Barker, M Tipton (S Brown 70), Adam Birchall (A Rundle 73), J Buxton, J Talbot, F McLachlan. Attendance 1,562
Mansfield Town 1 Huddersfield Town 2
The Terriers kept their pre-season winning streak intact with a victory over Mansfield Town. Expected to be Town's toughest game of the pre-season campaign so far, it lived up to the billing and it wasn't until former Stag Junior Mendes found the back of the net a minute into second half injury time were Town assured of the win.
It was somewhat poetic for Mendes who, as well as not playing a prominent role so far in Jacko's pre-season plans, took the field as a second half substitute to a torrent of boos from the 1400 Mansfield fans only to silence them in the best possible way right at the death.
It was the first time the two teams had met since the play-off final and the wounds had still not healed for some Stags' fans who booed Town players Andy Booth, Tony Carss with a particularly loud jeer reserved for keeper Paul Rachubka.
Mansfield began the game well and worked some very good passing moves most involving Palmer's close-season captures Uhlenbeek and Birchill. Town soon settled however and began to pile on the pressure. Firstly, on 8 minutes, the Terriers had a penalty waved away after Buxton seemingly blatantly handballed Holdsworth's cross in the box and five minutes later David Mirfin expertly volleyed to convert a Booth header which the veteran nodded back across goal from a Carss free-kick. However, Boothy was mysteriously flagged offside.
The home side had chances of their own but Rachubka was equal to Tipton's low drive on 18 minutes. Moments later, player-manager Palmer was unlucky not to latch onto a free-kick from the edge of the area at the back post.
The referee then failed to spot a blatant pull on Hudson in the area as he shaped to shoot but the man in black redeemed himself on 31 minutes when he spotted Rhys Day's push on McIntosh in the area. Abbott, with four goals to his credit in 50 minutes on Wednesday night against Harrogate, placed the spot-kick too close to hulky keeper Pressman who made an easy save.
In the second half, Town never found the fluency evident in the first. The game was disrupted by numerous substitutions but it was Mansfield again who started the second half the brighter. One of the moves of the game came from the Stags when Barker linked superbly with Birchill on the right. He returned the ball to the striker whose volley was well held by Rabs.
Town responded and took the lead on 70 minutes with the move of the game. It began with the excellent Michael Collins who, on as a sub for Hudson, laid the ball out right to Holdsworth who played it inside to Brandon, he in-turn fed left wing-back Carss whose cross was headed past Pressman by Andy Booth.
Rundle gave the Stags a real lift on 76 minutes when his beautifully struck shot rattled the inside of the post and, just four minutes later, the tricky Simon Brown beat the offside trap, rounded Rachubka and slotted the ball home for the equaliser.
Mendes had been on he pitch just two minutes when the equalizer came, but he had already shown desire to impress. At the death, he linked up well with fellow substitute Gary Taylor-Fletcher to prod home the winner in injury time.
Jacko said: "I'm particularly pleased for Junior because he hasn't featured much and it was a nice place for him to score. We made hard work of it and, if Pav had scored the penalty it may have been different. It's another win, and that's about it.
"I was pleased with the substitutes as well. Danny Adams came on and was strong at the back, Gary Taylor-Fletcher worked hard. I thought Michael Collins played very well, he always wants to the ball and never goes missing in games but, as I say, I am particularly pleased for Mendes.
"The goal we conceded was disappointing. That is what we need to cut out. We cannot keep giving away silly goals because they could cost us points in the season-proper."
Town: Paul Rachubka, Andy Holdsworth, Tom Clarke, Tony Carss (Danny Adams 70), Martin McIntosh, David Mirfin, Chris Brandon, Andy Booth (Junior Mendes 78), Pawel Abbott (Gary Taylor-Fletcher 64), Jon Worthington (Danny Schofield 70), Mark Hudson (Michael Collins 64).
Not used: Phil Senior
Mendes leaves it late
Town notched up another winning friendly as they beat Mansfield 2-1 at Field Mill. It was ex-Mansfield player Mendes who scored the late decisive goal.
Town won again at the latest of their pre-season games back on home soil as they beat Mansfield 2-1 at Field Mill. On Wednesday a Town XI had travelled over to Lancashire to play non-league Rossendale. It was a relatively easy win with the Terriers finishing 4-0 winners. The new Town player Mark Hudson scored in the first minute to set the ball rolling. Junior Mendes scored in the first minute of the second half and from then on the result was in no doubt. Tom Clarke got the third and substitute Young scored the fourth.
At Mansfield it was Town who were on top in the first half. But they didn't get the rub of the green as a goal was disallowed and a couple of penalty shouts weren't given. One penalty was given but Abbott was foiled by the home keeper.
In the second half the balance of play was a bit more even but Town took the lead through Booth. Ten minutes later Mansfield equalised and it looked as though it would end up all square. But substitute Mendes the ex Mansfield player upset his former supporters by netting in injury time to give Town another win.
A few good displays by the Town players and special mention of our new centre back, Martin McIntosh, who is looking a good acquisition. Just the player needed to marshall the young lads at the back.
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