STAGSNET`S STATISTICAL PREVIEW
After finishing month October unbeaten in all competitions, capped with a 3-0 home victory over Grimsby in Johnston's Paint Trophy (last season LDV Vans Trophy) last Tuesday, the Stags now travel to one of their main horror opponents on their travels, namely Bristol Rovers.
And before November 20, 2001, the Stags had NEVER won an away game at Bristol Rovers, but lost on thirteen occasions, among them the most recent away game on March 25, 2006, when two early Pirates' raids put paid to the Stags' eight-match unbeaten run, having started with a 1-1 draw at home to Macclesfield on February 4.
And Macclesfield were the team the Stags beat in the final minute of last Saturday's encounter at Moss Rose thanks to a 90th minute Richie Barker penalty, Barker also having equalized a few minutes earlier against one of his former employers. And the Silkmen were Bristol Rovers' opponents in their latest home game, and the Gasheads could only manage a goal-less draw against the bottom club despite the fact that Macclesfield got a player sent-off for two yellow cards in the second half. And in Bristol Rovers' latest away game, the Gasheads could not make man-advantage count at Wrexham. The Dragons' first goal scorer got a straight red late on in the second half, yet Wrexham managed to put the game beyond doubt in the final minute.
And goal-scoring has been a major problem for Bristol Rovers this term. After the sale of Junior Agogo to Nottingham Forest, the Gasheads have only scored more than once in two League games this term, but haven't conceded that much either. Compare that to last season when Bristol Rovers figured in several high-scoring outings, among them a 3-3 draw at Field Mill on December 28, 2005. And fact is, that the Stags have in their home games scored FIVE MORE goals than Bristol Rovers have managed home and away. But that does not count on Saturday. Yet inconsistency might hinder the Gasheads from getting much higher than mid-table, the placings Bristol Rovers have managed in their last two campaigns.
Yet the away clash between the sides on March 19, 2005 was an incident-paced one in which the Stags led 4-2 about ten minutes from time and did get a second controversial penalty awarded against them by a certain Grant Hegley, a ref that got the lowest Stagsnet rating last term. Just read the Stagsnet report of the 4-4 game!
And around Christmas 2005, the Stags went 2-0 up before Bristol Rovers equalized just before half-time due to another controversial spot-kick. But the Stags took the lead in the second half before being robbed in injury time.
And more often than not have Bristol Rovers left Field Mill emptyhanded – i.e. six consecutive games there without scoring a single goal in the mid-sixties – out of total thirteen - when the teams were stalwarts in the old third. But twice in that period of time,the Stags were hit for six when Bristol Rovers played their home games at Eastville – a 0-6 rout in 1965-66 and a 2-6 (Stags goals Partridge and Goodfellow) in the 1968-69 FA Cup QF season. That period also saw a high-scoring draw to the tune of 4-4 on October 15, 1966 when Rowland scored twice for the Stags, Mitchinson and Brace one apiece at Eastville in front of 7599. It was the ONLY Stags away point at Bristol Rovers between 1963-64 and 1971-72. In the 1966-67 season, both sides finished just a couple of points short of the second automatic promotion place. QPR had then run away with the first one already by Christmas 1966. Needless to say that Bristol Rovers failed to score at Field Mill that season as a very good crowd of 12815 (in fact the Stags' best home gate that term) saw Morris and Mitchinson send the Pirates home without anything on March 4, 1967.
And does any current Bristol Rovers supporter remember that about half of the Pirates' strikes at Field Mill were achieved just before World War II? Here are the facts:
In all the four seasons the Stags did play in the old Southern section, Bristol Rovers were the opponents and six of the Bristol team's goals at Field Mill in league fixtures were scored during that period. This was done on January 30, 1932, when 7118 watched the Stags go down 3-0 and on Christmas Eve, 1938, when Gardiner scored the consolation goal in a 1-3-defeat watched by 3343 – the second of six consecutive league defeats then. And the first-ever Stags win against the Gasheads was also achieved in the thirties, when a solitary Read scoring in front of 3222 on January 15, 1938, clinched the game in favour of the Stags. And the first Stags point at Bristol Rovers was achieved in the first-ever league game between the sides. This was an away one on September 19, 1931. A penalty, converted by England, was the Stags' first-ever in league history and that was enough to secure a 1-1 draw, the Stags' second away point, in front of 10770.
Even in the first post-war season when the Stags finished bottom, were Bristol Rovers soundly beaten early on in the 1946-47 season. On September 21, 1946, two goals from the later Yeovil FA Cup hero Bryant and a strike by Calverley in front of a good crowd of 9183 put the Stags on the winning trail.
The teams also met in the Stags' solitary season in the old 2nd division and a home game on April 24, 1978, was won 3-0 – in fact the last Mansfield win that season thanks to two goals from John Aston and one from Johnny Miller. Another memorable rout was the 5-0 on January 31, 1987 – the Keith Cassells show that figured on the Swedish pools coupons – of course I predicted a banker Stags win and was proved right. Only once have the teams met in the FA Cup – and that was in the 3rd round in the 1957-58 season. The Stags were drawn away and were routed 5-0 on January 4, 1958. At that time, Bristol Rovers were a solid top-half team in the old second division finishing 10th while the Stags qualified for the then old third ending up as 6th in the final season of the old div 3 (N).
Among those who have played for both sides are ex-Stags manager Keith Curle (who in fact did play for both Bristol teams) and the current Watford boss Adrian Boothroyd as well as currently Craig Disley.
Played for both sides: Adam Barrett, Stewart Barrowclough, Andy Beasley, Adrian Boothroyd, Keith Curle, Jimmy Daws, Craig Disley, Stephen Foster, Roger Frude, Chris Hackett, Scott Jones, Phil Kite, Trevor Morgan, Ernest Parker, Noel Parkinson, Nicky Platnauer, Mark Smalley, Tom Stanton, Jackie Storer, Reg Trotman, Ryan Williams, Jimmy Wilson.
Home games: P 22, W 13, D 5, L 4, GF 38, GA 16
Away games: P 22, W 2, D 7, L 13, GF 23, GA 51
1931-32 0-3 1932-01-30 1-1 1931-09-19 Div 3 (S)
1937-38 1-0 1938-01-15 0-0 1937-09-04 Div 3 (S)
1938-39 1-3 1938-12-24 0-3 1938-08-27 Div 3 (S)
1946-47 3-1 1946-09-21 0-1 1947-01-25 Div 3 (S)
1963-64 2-0 1964-04-11 2-3 1963-11-30 Div 3 (old)
1964-65 3-0 1964-12-12 1-4 1964-08-22 Div 3 (old)
1965-66 2-0 1965-09-04 0-6 1966-02-19 Div 3 (old)
1966-67 2-0 1967-03-04 4-4 1966-10-15 Div 3 (old)
1967-68 3-0 1968-03-11 0-2 1967-09-09 Div 3 (old)
1968-69 0-0 1968-10-26 2-6 1969-03-25 Div 3 (old)
1969-70 1-1 1969-09-20 1-4 1970-01-10 Div 3 (old)
1970-71 4-1 1971-01-16 0-2 1970-10-20 Div 3 (old)
1971-72 0-0 1971-10-09 1-2 1972-03-11 Div 3 (old)
1977-78 3-0 1978-04-24 1-3 1977-10-04 Div 2 (old)
1986-87 5-0 1987-01-31 0-0 1986-09-13 Div 3 (old)
1987-88 1-0 1988-02-27 1-2 1987-10-03 Div 3 (old)
1988-89 2-1 1988-10-08 0-0 1989-02-18 Div 3 (old)
1989-90 0-1 1989-08-26 1-1 1990-01-13 Div 3 (old)
2001-02 2-0 2002-04-06 1-0 2001-11-20 Div 3
2003-04 0-0 2004-04-12 3-1 2003-09-30 Div 3
2004-05 0-2 2004-08-07 4-4 2005-03-19 League Two
2005-06 3-3 2005-12-28 0-2 2006-03-25 League Two
1957-58 0-5 1958-01-04 3rd round at Eastville
Svante Bernhard aka Sweden Stag (pictured, above right)
Vastly updated player section courtesy of the history CD
Latest | November 2006