SUPERB STAGS OUT OF CUP
Carling Cup Round 3
Mansfield Town 2 - 3 Millwall
Brown 66, Barker 67 May 24, Robinson 60, Livermore 89
Attendance: 4,133 (450 from Millwall)
See Match Centre for a brief Stagsnet report - full report to appear tomorrow evening.
Stags suffer last gasp Carling Cup 3-2 heartbreak
IT took a spectacular last minute winner from Millwall's Dave Livermore to finally end battling Mansfield Town's Carling Cup run at Field Mill last night.
Stags were looking for a hat-trick of Championship scalps, having already knocked out Stoke City and Southampton in earlier rounds, but found themselves 2-0 down after 61 minutes, despite dominating for good spells against a Lions side currently bottom of the table.
However, two goals in less than two minutes from Simon Brown (67) and Richie Barker (69) were nothing less than fully deserved as Field Mill erupted.
There were then chances at both ends after that as both sides went for the win and it was the Lions who finally edged home.
But, with another improved home crowd fully behind them, Stags will look on this as another step forward as they head for Cheltenham on Saturday
Stags kept an unchanged side from the weekend's 4-0 thrashing of Barnet while Millwall, although forced into four changes through injury, suspension and avoiding loan players becoming cup-tied, still turned out a strong side with the likes of Don Hutchison, Barry Hayles and Carl Asaba.
Brown almost capitalised on an early mistake as Hutchison tried to take a quick free kick just inside the Mansfield half. Brown intercepted and tried to race clear but finally lost possession just inside the visitors' box.
There were groans as Uhlenbeek failed to spot Rundle in space to the left of the box and gave away possession. But seconds later he did find the young winger whose first time low cross sailed in front of goal with no team mate able to get there.
But the visitors edged in front from their second corner on 24 minutes. Stags laboured to clear it and the ball was eventually hooked back across goal by Asaba to May who buried his header from seven yards.
Immediately Stags were calling for a penalty as Coke went down under Craig's challenge after bursting into the box, but experienced referee Mike Riley gave nothing.
Millwall then made hard work of clearing two successive Mansfield corners while Brown was only just over with a flicked header from a dangerous ball in by Uhlenbeek.
John-Baptiste had to get in the way of a bullet shot by Hayles after more good skills from the veteran star.
Just before the break Barker slipped Brown into space in the box and his finish bulged into the side netting.
The Lions won two quickfire corners straight on the restart which Stags defended well.
But, just as Mansfield were building up a head of steam, they conceded a second goal on 61 minutes.
Hutchison floated over a right wing corner and Robinson was afforded a six yard header that Pressman got a hand on but couldn't keep out.
Stags had let both goals in following corners and almost let in a third when May powered a header just wide from another Hutchison flag kick.
But when Dunne tripped Brown he was shown a yellow card. And from the free kick Stags broke through. The ball was rolled to Uhlenbeek who made space for a low shot that came back off the base of the post and Brown was there first to help the loose ball over the line in a pile-up of bodies.
Incredibly within a minute the game was all square. Brown slipped a great pass through a crowded defence and Barker, under pressure, showed great strength and presence of mind to steer a perfect finish wide of Marshall.
Mansfield had a let-off on 78 minutes when May floated a pass to Asaba who was thankfully offside as he steered a volley home.
Mansfield then wasted a great chance at the other end as Brown failed to turn Uhlenbeek's low cross on target at the near post. And an off-balance Barker then stabbed the loose ball wide of a gaping goal with a better placed Rundle coming in to his left.
Barker's shot on the turn brought a save from Robinson as Stags looked to settle the game inside the 90 minutes.
Stags almost snatched it in the last minute but Lawrence blocked Rundle's finish after great work by Uhlenbeek and Brown.
But this thrilling game had a sting in the tail as Brown conceded a free kick just inside his own half.
The kick was cleared out as far as Livermore 25 yards from goal and he let fly with a venomous volley that bounced once before sailing high into the top right hand corner.
Buxton had a shot blocked right in front of goal as Millwall frantically defended a stoppage time corner.
STAGS: Pressman, Jelleyman, John-Baptiste, Uhlenbeek, Barker, Buxton, Coke, Rundle, Brown, Hjelde, D'Laryea, Subs: Dawson, Birchall, White, Jacobs, Littlejohn.
MILLWALL: Marshall, Lawrence, Elliott (Cogan 73), Robinson, Dunne, Livermore, Hutchison (Morris 73), Craig, May, Asaba, Hayles (Braniff 90). Subs: Igoe, Masterton.
REFEREE: Mike Riley of Yorks.
SCORERS: Mansfield - Brown 67, Barker 69. Millwall - May 24; Robinson 61; Livermore 90.
CAUTIONS: Mansfield - Barker 90 (clash with Marshall) .Millwall - Dunne 56 (foul on Brown); Marshall 90 (clash with Barker)
STAGS MAN OF THE MATCH: Adam Rundle.
Mansfield 2 Millwall 3
League Two strugglers Mansfield's gallant Carling Cup run was ended by a spectacular 90th-minute Dave Livermore winner as Millwall made heavy weather of progressing into the fourth round.
The Stags had disposed of Championship sides Stoke and Southampton in previous rounds but fell behind to goals from the Lions' Ben May and Paul Robinson either side of half-time.
Two goals inside 60 seconds from Simon Brown and Richie Barker hauled the underdogs back on terms before Livermore's last-gasp volley sealed the tie.
Town had lined up unchanged after Saturday's 4-0 home victory over Barnet which took them off the bottom of the table but Millwall boss Colin Lee made five alterations following the 2-0 defeat to Southampton.
On-loan defensive quartet Ady Williams, Jamie Vincent, Jermaine Wright and Phil Ifil were all missing while Jody Morris started on the bench as Marvin Elliot, Don Hutchinson, Tony Craig, Carl Asaba and Robinson were drafted in.
It was the hosts who were first to threaten as Brown made tracks along the left wing only to lose his composure as he came under pressure from Hutchinson.
The visitors' response came with 10 minutes gone when May cut in off the right and tested Kevin Pressman low down at veteran's near post.
Alan Dunne was then wide with a volleyed effort hit from a similar position before Brown failed to make the best of a close-range opportunity from Adam Rundle's corner.
And Town were made to pay for their profligacy when they found themselves a goal behind after Asaba's hard work on the byline was rewarded, his hooked cross into the six-yard box headed home by May in the 25th minute.
Then, three minutes after the half-hour, a neat Asaba turn took him clear of Alex John-Baptiste, but Pressman was able to catch the shot in front of his face.
Both sides ran out unchanged for the start of the second period which opened with the Lions piling on more pressure with a strong wind at their backs.
Elliott wasted a golden opportunity to double the visitors lead when he dragged a 12-yard effort wide of goal when unchallenged following Barry Hayles' cross.
But in the 62nd minute Robinson headed Millwall into a 2-0 lead as he converted Hutchinson's right-wing corner.
However, Brown pounced to stab home Gus Uhlenbeek's deflected effort five minutes later and just a minute later Barker split the reeling Lions defence to run clear on Marshall and slot the ball low to the goalkeeper's right.
Barker then sliced wide of target six yards out when it looked easier to score with 10 minutes remaining and Livermore struck a stunning winner with a long-range volley which fizzed through a crowd and left Pressman no chance.
Mansfield Pressman, Jelleyman, Baptiste, Hjelde, Buxton, Rundle, D'Laryea, Coke, Uhlenbeek, Barker, Brown.
Subs Not Used: Dawson, Birchall, White, Jacobs, Littlejohn.
Goals: Brown 67, Barker 68.
Millwall Marshall, Craig, Paul Robinson, Lawrence, Elliott (Cogan 73), Livermore, Hutchison (Morris 73), Dunne, Hayles (Braniff 90), Asaba, May.
Subs Not Used: Igoe, Masterson.
Booked: Dunne, May, Marshall.
Goals: May 25, Paul Robinson 61, Livermore 90.
Ref: M Riley (W Yorkshire).
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