BARKER GOALS EARN EASY VICTORY
Mansfield Town 3 - 0 Wrexham
Barker 21, 35, Reet 68.
Attendance: 2971 (257 from Wrexham)
Martin Shaw at Field Mill
Two goals from Richie Barker and another from Danny Reet earned Mansfield a comfortable victory over Wrexham at Field Mill this afternoon. Carl Muggleston had just one save to make in a one-sided encounter. Stephen Dawson and Matt Hamshaw were both superb in midfield. After the game Peter Shirtliff exclusively told Stagsnet that Dawson is not seriously injured (full audio interview to follow later).
Man of the match: Stephen Dawson and Matt Hamshaw
Barker brace as Stags see off Wrexham
Mansfield Town 3 Wrexham 0
RICHIE Barker was again the thorn in Wrexham's side as his brace helped condemn the Welsh club to a fifth successive away defeat at Field Mill this afternoon.
The Stags skipper netted twice in two meetings last season and his first half brace set up Mansfield for their first win in four games and continued their unbeaten October.
Danny Reet added the third after Barker and Alex John-Baptiste had both rattled the woodwork and Matt Hamshaw had seen Wrexham keeper Michael Ingham save superbly to prevent him crowning a mesmerising run from his own half.
But Mansfield were also indebted to keeper Carl Muggleton for a crucial save to deny Chris Llewellyn in first half stoppage time at 2-0 which could have put the Dragons back in the hunt.
Delighted Stags boss Peter Shirtliff said: "That was fantastic - a great performance in all departments.
"I thought we looked positive and threatening on many occasion and the final scoreline was no injustice.
"It was good to have Matt Hamshaw back. He has the quality on the ball and if he had scored the one when he went all the way through it would have been goal of the season.
"I was pleased for Richie Barker to grab two goals, he has worked hard on the field and in training and deserved them.
"I was also pleased with Carl Muggleton just before half time when we went to sleep for a split second and he came to our rescue.
"Goalkeepers are there to make saves, but I was chuffed to bits for him that he made it as it kept us a clean sheet which was important."
Buxton dropped down to the bench with Hamshaw returning to the starting line-up after his one game ban.
Mullins had to clear a dangerous low cross in from the right by Johnson inside the first 20 seconds as Wrexham almost caught Mansfield cold.
On eight minutes Dawson played a square pass inside to Dawson just outside the box who evaded a defender before rifling well over.
Dawson was then back at the other end defending as he got in a block on Jones' 18 yard effort.
Wrexham were dominating play with some neat midfield passing, but Stags forced the first corner on 19 minutes when Reet had a shot deflect wide, but, when the kick reached Sheehan, he blazed well over.
However, Mansfield were ahead on 21 minutes. Hamshaw intercepted a Wrexham clearance and threaded a superb through ball for Barker who was onside as he skilfully waltzed round the keeper and stroked the ball into the empty net.
It really should have been 2-0 on 26 minutes from another brilliant Hamshaw through ball. This time he set up Jelleyman for a one on one. But Jelleyman appeared to hesitate as the visitors appealed for offside and that was all the time they needed to get defenders back and Jelleyman eventually chipped well over under pressure.
Two minutes later Hamshaw's wicked right wing cross flew across the face of goal with Barker and Reet just unable to get there. Keeper Ingham managed to get a hand to it to try to push it away and it finally reached John-Baptiste at the far post who hurriedly blasted well wide.
Ingham turned away a dangerous Barker cross after the big striker got to the by-line, Wrexham clearing the corner.
Stags forced another flags kick soon after which saw a scramble that ended with Ingham clutching John-Baptiste's looping header.
Another superb Johnson cross for Wrexham saw Hjelde stoop to head way for the Dragons' first corner.
But Barker struck again for Mansfield on 36 minutes. Sheehan flighted a fine ball over the visitors' defence into the path of Barker. And he nicked the ball away from the advancing keeper to take it wide of him and then slotted into the net past the despairing lunge of Morgan on the line to make it 2-0.
Wrexham sent on Mike Williams to replace Roche.
Two more home corners followed. Hamshaw shooting tamely at Ingham from the second.
Muggleton had had nothing to do all half but made a crucial save in first half stoppage time.
Stags' defence disintegrated as Jones found himself with only the keeper to beat. But he delayed and squared to Llewellyn, who was also unmarked and eight yards from goal, but Muggleton somehow got down to get in the way of his low finish.
Wrexham started the second half with Newby on up front in place of Done and Johnson switching to the left.
Hamshaw required treatment after a collision with big defender Evans but was able to continue.
Dawson's head on for Hamshaw saw the winger's shot deflect for a corner on 55 minutes. Hamshaw floated that over and Barker powered a header against the crossbar, Mullins unable to get any power or direction on the follow-up.
Wrexham caused home hearts to flutter on 59 when Johnson was afforded timer and space 20 yards from goal and his curling effort was only just over the right angle of bar and post.
Stags were delighted to see the dangerous Johnson withdrawn on 63, Crowell replacing him.
Hamshaw almost scored the goal of the season on 65 as he picked up the ball in his own half and ghosted past everyone to get into the box with a thrilling run which ended with a powerful shot that Ingham tipped over.
A minute later John-Baptiste was against thwarted by a post as Dawson found Hjelde whose backheel to John-Baptiste saw his low finish deflect against the foot of the right hand upright.
Mansfield suffered a blow on 68 minutes when Marc Jones' foul on Dawson just outside the box saw Dawson eventually stretchered off with an ankle injury.
But Stags made Wrexham pay with the third goal from the resulting free kick a minute later. Barker's kick was blocked. But the ball was swung back in and, as it flew up off Hjelde's chest, Reet blazed home an unstoppable volley, despite appearing to be in an offside position.
Unable to get in a shot of his own, Coke pulled the ball back for Barker to slice over on 74 minutes.
Arnold came on for Hamshaw who received a good ovation.
Jones curled a fine free kick narrowly over near the end for Wrexham.
Beardsley, on for Reet, almost added a fourth in stoppage time as he broke away. But his attempted placed finish was not too powerful and allowed Ingham to get a hand to it.
Even deeper into stoppage time Beardsley had a shot blocked and Arnold completely missed the ball as he kicked at thin air for the follow up.