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Archived News from November 2005

8th November 2005 13:48

Evening Post, 08 November 2005
Mansfield manager Peter Shirtliff hopes to get Gus Uhlenbeek's three match ban reduced.

Uhlenbeek was handed a straight red card at Rotherham after an injury-time fracas with Michael Keane.

Shirtliff hopes referee Darren Drysdale might look at the incident again and down grade his punishment to a yellow card.

Uhlenbeek would still be suspended - as he had previously already been booked in the match - but only for one game.

Shirtliff is also looking to extend Jonathan D'Laryea's loan from Manchester City
Evening Post, 07 November 2005
Rotherham United 3 v 4 Mansfield Town

The Millers fans behind the makeshift press box at Millmoor were under no illusions as to what was going to happen.

"Yer know oo's goin' t'score winner? Richie Barker."

There is not an emotion in football that can satisfy one person and infuriate thousands of others in the same place more than a player scoring against his old club.

It will have been something chuntered about in Rotherham pubs throughout Saturday night.

They could console themselves over Sod's Law, but their team's failure to win since September 10 might be more of a pressing concern to the followers of Mick Harford's side.

As for the Stags, it was their work ethic and determination, allied to manager Peter Shirtliff deciding to go for the win in the closing stages, that meant they just deserved to book their place in the next round.

It should not have been left to Barker anticipating a knock-down from Rhys Day in injury-time to jab the ball past his mate Rotherham keeper Gary Montgomery.

The Stags had the chances to finish off the Millers long before that, including Adam Rundle's one-on-one in the first half and a couple of Simon Brown misses towards the climax.

They showed qualities that can only help them make sure the threat of relegation to the Conference becomes someone else's problem.

Looking at the final score it is incredible to consider that the first 20 minutes was a washout.

Then Stags scored twice before allowing the Millers to get back on terms, admittedly from two good finishes from Paul McLaren.

Now that the victory is safely tucked away, that might be one of the most notable lessons the young Stags learned from their trip to South Yorkshire.

Against a League Two team, you might be able to switch off a little bit after scoring a goal. But against higher-division sides you are more likely to be punished for a lack of concentration.

The fact they had the qualities to still go on and win bodes well for their league survival fight.

In centre-forwards Barker and Brown they have a partnership that is on fire at the moment.

Brown put the Stags in the lead with a neat header that Montgomery will probably be disappointed to have let in at his near' post.

And after McLaren had smashed an immediate riposte, the Stags did well to get back in the lead with a Giles Coke header that exposed a static Millers defence.

Rotherham got straight back into the game again and, when former Derby striker Deon Burton got the finishing touch to a corner ten minutes into the second half, it seemed order would be restored.

But the Stags kept battling and their positivity was rewarded with Barker's two goals.

The captain did his best to play down his contribution afterwards, ultra-critically describing it as going through the motions in the first 70 minutes.

What he means is he didn't have many shots on goal.

Although he was muted in his celebrations after his late winner, the rest of the team were not and it will be a huge boost for them to win their second away game on the trot. Just as long as it does not go to their heads.

What was going through Gus Uhlenbeek's head when he and Michael Keane were sent off after a skirmish just before the winner, only he will know.

Although the Stags are going well, Shirtliff could really do without these disciplinary problems, after Gareth Jelleyman was sent off in similar circumstances last week.

But you have little doubt the manager will get to grips with it, just as he has everything else since the departure of Carlton Palmer.

He is the third consecutive Stags manager to take his first game in an FA Cup tie - but the first to win.

Now that is the sort of omen to build on.
Evening Post, 07 November 2005
Two-goal hero Richie Barker was delighted to have scored the winner - but did not want to rub it in against his old side.

He said: "For 70 minutes, I didn't have a great game and didn't get close to having even a shot at goal.

"I was going through the motions to try to do something and luckily it fell for me a couple of times towards the end.

"I have some very good friends in that team and when I scored, I thought 'just blow the whistle because I want to walk off now'. I spent four years at Rotherham and it wasn't all brilliant, but I didn't want to go too overboard. Hopefully, next week I will be able to have a chat to a few people in their dressing room and we can be friends again."

Barker has now scored six goals in the past four games, which have seen the Stags find the net 13 times.

And he believes the spirit the players showed can only stand them in good stead for the visit of Bury on Friday.

"Winning becomes a habit and it is just important to keep the run going, whether it is in the league or the cup," he added.

"The number of chances we created was unbelievable. We must have had six or seven clear-cut opportunities.

"We showed a great deal of belief when we were 3-2 down against a League One side and won 4-3."
Evening Post, 07 November 2005
Millers boss Mick Harford lambasted his side's defending for allowing the Stags back into the game.

Poor marking contributed to all four Mansfield goals and Harford said it was a big problem. They haven't won since September 10.

After he said he would come down on Michael Keane "like a ton of bricks" for being sent off after an injury-time fight with Gus Uhlenbeek.

He said: "I am devastated but you cannot win games when you defend like that.

"We just cannot defend properly as we left players unmarked. We are just not picking up and every ball that goes into our box looks like being a goal.

"When you score three goals at home, you expect to win, but our defending just wasn't there."
Evening Post, 07 November 2005
New Mansfield boss Peter Shirtliff was delighted with his team's spirit.

He said: "I'm very proud of them because they never gave up. It was a fantastic performance, although we didn't defend the leads very well.

"The spirit is tremendous and I'm really pleased.

"I fancied Richie to score but then I always think we can get goals as a team.

"Even though we got four, we had a few more chances. But we came out on top of a good cup tie that could have gone either way.

"When it was 3-3, I wanted us to go for the win so I sent Rhys Day up for the long throw and it paid off."

Shirtliff was less pleased with Gus Uhlenbeek's sending off for violent conduct, which came a week after Gareth Jelleyman was dismissed under similar circumstances at Cheltenham.

He said: "I'm disappointed Gus was sent off because he has been playing well and we now lose him for three games.

"It is the second away game in a row it has happened and I want us to be more disciplined than that.

"I have got complete trust in all the players at the club to come in and do a job. If I didn't, they wouldn't be here.

"There are always opportunities and Gus has handed one to someone else by getting sent off."


Latest | November 2005