SUPER STAGS THUMP EBBSFLEET
Blue Square Premier
Mansfield Town 3 - 0 Ebbsfleet United
Duffy 30, Briscoe 53, Speight 66
Attendance: 3269 (52 from Ebbsfleet)
Date: 22 August 2009
Another Stags Field day leaves Fleet beat
THEY call it 'Fortress Field Mill', so Ebbsfleet United's visit to Mansfield Town on Saturday was always going to be difficult, writes Charles Webster.
Undefeated in 14 home games since the start of 2009, the Stags shut out the Fleet and sent them home still looking for their first Blue Square Premier win of the season.
Even the introduction of 25-year-old forward Simon Thomas, signed on loan from Crystal Palace, could not create the magic formula to inspire Ebbsfleet to victory.
With two other changes from the side beaten by the same scoreline at Stevenage five days earlier - Ishmael Welsh and Scott Shulton in for Stefan Bailey and Ricky Shakes - the Fleet started lively and matched Mansfield in most departments.
But, they had no equal to Louis Briscoe who took little time to make his mark, setting up Rob Duffy for a chance on four minutes that was blocked.
Three minutes later, Briscoe had a shot tipped over by Lance Cronin, the Fleet responding with a Darius Charles header which went narrowly wide from Shulton's corner.
Ebbsfleet's most threatening player was Welsh, who had Gary Silk back-pedalling for much of the first half.
And, when the former Grays winger crossed to the right flank, he skipped away from Craig Armstrong and fired off a low drive which Alan Marriott did well to save at his near post.
Magno Vieira seemed to enjoy the mobility and touch of strike partner Thomas and the Fleet were beginning to look progressively dangerous when Mansfield took the lead after half an hour; Ryan Williams crossed to the far post, where Duffy crashed the ball into the net.
As Duffy scored, the Fleet backline were left with arms aloft, appealing for offside against Kyle Perry, yet their protestations were ignored.
Michael West soon limped out of proceedings and was replaced by Kane Wills, while Gavin Heeroo became embroiled in a feud with Kyle Nix that resulted in a booking for Heeroo on 38 minutes.
Three minutes before the break, Thomas had his first goal attempt, although his effort went over the crossbar, while Welsh worked an interchange with Wills that forced Marriott to push his effort clear.
The first half ended with Cronin palming away a Briscoe shot from Armstrong's cross.
However, the second period began with Mansfield on the back foot as Welsh continued to cause problems to such effect that Scott Garner received a caution for fouling the winger as he got behind the home defence once again.
Garner's booking was evidence of a more physical approach from Town after the break and their muscular methodology bore fruit on 53 minutes when they increased their advantage; Briscoe finishing clinically after a late run took him beyond the Fleet defence to receive a pass in an onside position.
Stags boss David Holdsworth clearly decided Briscoe's talents could be saved for another day, replacing him on the hour with Jake Speight.
Five minutes later, the substitute got on the scoresheet, heading home after Cronin had parried Perry's header into Speight's path following a super save.
Ebbsfleet: Cronin 7, Salmon 7, (Forshaw 79), Crooks 7, Charles 7, Collins 7, Shulton 7, Heeroo 7, West 6 (Wills 33, 7), Welsh 8 (Ginty 74), Thomas 7, Vieira 7. Subs not used: Pooley, Lamprell. Att: 3,269.
Mansfield Town 3 Fleet 0
report from ebbsfleetunited.co.uk
The Fleet went down to another 3-0 defeat on the road this afternoon but once again the performance and application was there and Liam Daish must hope the goals and resilience follow as soon as possible.
With Stefan Bailey suffering a hamstring problem, Scott Shulton won a recall and he was joined by new loan signing Simon Thomas as two changes from Tuesday night's defeat at Stevenage. Mansfield began to show early signs of form, with Louis Briscoe and Craig Armstrong proving the chief danger, as they remained most of the afternoon.
Indeed Briscoe drew the first save from Lance Cronin on 9 minutes and then Luke Jones glanced a header just wide from a corner. At the other end, Darius Charles tried the same with a free header and Ishmael Welsh forced Alan Marriott turn his effort round the post. Welsh was in the thick of the action again two minutes later with a low shot that had Marriott stooping low.
Mansfield continued to probe but the Fleet more than held their own and Magno Vieira's 25th minute miss should have brought more reward after he dispossessed Gary Silk but struck wide of the post. But with counter-attack the order of the day, Mansfield exploited the Fleet's forward impetus and Marriott cleared long to Briscoe who led a charge towards the Fleet goal. Armstrong got free down the left and found Rob Duffy at the far post with a cross that the former Oxford striker tucked gleefully past Cronin.
The Fleet were looking brisk enough despite the goal and Gavin Heeroo tested the goalkeeper with a free kick before Welsh appeared to be bundled over in the box on the stroke of half-time but the referee wasn't interested. There was little to choose between the sides other than the goal and the Fleet's lack of forward penetration, though Thomas showed good touch and pace as he attempted to forge a partnership with Vieira.
The visitors continued to show initiative into the second half, with the impressive Welsh causing problems and drawing a tackle from Garner that saw the referee reach into his pocket for a yellow card. Vieira rolled a shot along the box in another good move but with the Fleet on the front foot, the Stags knocked the stuffing out of their youthful opponents with a second goal on 53 minutes. Jones carved the Fleet defence wide open and with even Briscoe seeming to wait for the linesman's flag, he nevertheless placed a shot under Cronin to make it 2-0.
The home side increased the lead again within 10 minutes as the Fleet looked all at sea. The Stags' wingers looked in command, though Will Salmon and Jordan Collins performed well in the full-back positions. It wasn't enough to stop Kyle Perry exploiting space down the right and though Cronin parried his shot, substitute Jake Speight was on hand to mop up, heading over the line to extend Mansfield's lead.
With another unflattering scoreline looming, Fleet tried to make it more respectable, Thomas, Vieira and Shulton all having efforts of varying quality as Mansfield relaxed but no Fleet player seemed able to apply the finishing touches.
Once more it was a creditable performance by Daish's young side, who show they are more than a match for more illustrious opponents but while goals are surrendered cheaply and proving difficult to come by at the other end, the Fleet will struggle to haul themselves out of that bottom four position. Fix that small problem, however, and the foundations are certainly there as Mansfield discovered in a more than even first half.
TEAM: Cronin, Salmon (Forshaw 80), Collins, Crooks, Charles, Heeroo, Shulton, West (Wills 34), Welsh (Ginty 75), Thomas, Vieira. Subs: Lamprell, Pooley.
posted by DisplacedRed on eufcforum.com
Been back from the game for about half an hour now, just reflecting on things. The 3-0 scoreline flattered Mansfield, Welsh absolutely terrorized their right back all game until he came off. Thomas looked strong in the air and on the ground, Vieira was full of running and made a couple of opportunities for himself. Just a bit slack at the back again which is worrying, seeing as those 5 (including Lance) are the only part of the side which has been unchanged for the 5 games so far. Collins can hold his head high though, a couple of great tackles, especially one to stop their right winger when he was clean through and come away with the ball. Wasted set pieces was again concerning, corners and free kicks around the box were never clearing the first man.
Referee was again poor, we were denied a blatant penalty in the first half when Welsh was taken out when clean through. A lot of our fans reckon that the first goal was offside, while there was a man in an offside position he did not interfere with play so good goal. Second and third our defence was just outpowered/outpaced, although Lance was unlucky with the third, he made a great save, just fell to one of their players who had an easy task to slot in. A lot of Mansfield fans spoke to me on the way out, praised us for our football and said we'd given them their hardest game there so far.
Some positives, some negatives, always something to build on. The first 3 points are not far away, I think next Saturday will be the first number in that "w" column.
Mansfield Town 3 Ebbsfleet Utd 0, Saturday 22nd August
By John Lomas
STRIKER Rob Duffy grabbed his third goal of the season on the half hour to put Mansfield Town on their way to a third victory in a week against winless Ebbsfleet United at Field Mill on Saturday afternoon.
Duffy was left alone at the far post to control and cleverly finish an Armstrong cross after the Stags had squandered several chances in an open match.
Louis Briscoe doubled the lead to calm a few home nerves eight minutes into the second half, springing the offside trap to reach Jones' long ball over the top and again finish in style.
Then in the 68th minute substitute Jake Speight headed in the rebound after Perry's close range finish was superbly saved by the diving keeper - scoring as a substitute for the third successive home match.
Stags boss David Holdsworth had resisted the temptation of making any changes to the side that performed so well in midweek.
That meant Daryl Clare, two-goal penalty hero in the 4-1 home win over Barrow on Tuesday, once again had to be content with a place on the bench.
United defended an early Stags corner after Briscoe failed to control Nix's pulled-back flag kick.
Great pace from Briscoe onto a long Armstrong clearance saw him trick his way to the right by-line where his low pull-back reached Duffy whose finish was blocked by the large frame of Crooks diving in.
Silk easily cleared Welsh's first corner for the visitors.
Then a superb 20 yard shot from Briscoe was tipped over at the other end to spark two corners which Jones and then Garner got their heads on but couldn't find the Ebbsfleet net.
But Mansfield were not having it all their own way. Vieria had a pot from 20 yards at the other end but it stuck a leg which took the pace off it and the ball ran through easily for Marriott.
Then a deflected Welsh cross brought United's second corner which West sent in and Charles headed powerfully over.
Silk again cleared another Welsh corner but the ball was returned back to the Fleet winger who cut inside and brought a low save out of Marriott at his near post.
Armstrong's ball down the left sent Perry on a run and he slipped Williams into the box only for the winger to mis-kick as he tried to cross and the ball ran harmlessly into touch.
Then Perry's crossfield ball found Williams who, in return, tried to pick out Perry again at the far post only to see the striker head into the keeper's arms instead of pulling it back for Duffy.
Stags had a good chance on 22 minutes as Somner lifted the ball across the box where Perry met it with a low bicycle kick from seven yards that, fortunately for Ebbsfleet, was straight at keeper Cronin.
However, two minutes later the visitors broke well from a home corner and Vieria was fractionally wide from 18 yards with a fierce strike with Marriott helplessly rooted.
But it was the home side who struck first on the half-hour, Armstrong played a ball across the box from just inside the United half as the visitors defence advanced.
But they left Duffy in there inside and all alone and the striker controlled and dispatched a superb finish across Cronin and into the net.
Two minutes later Duffy chested down Silk's cross for Somner to send a rasping half-volley just over the goal frame.
Duffy was caught late by Crooks as he tried to hook a return pass to Williams and stayed down for treatment for a bang to the head.
Nix was brought down by Heeroo on 38 minutes and when the Ebbsfleet man waved his arms and shouted at the referee over the decision, he was shown the game's first yellow card.
Thomas should have turned home a low cross at the far post but was offside anyway as Ebbsfleet looked for a way back into the contest.
Heeroo was very close on 44 minutes with a well struck free kick that only just cleared the angle from 20 yards.
Welsh appeared to play for the penalty as he bounced off Armstrong when going for Wills' return pass in first half stoppage time and referee Mr Mohareb was unimpressed.
And there was still time for Armstrong to put Briscoe into space inside the left of the box and he fired a low shot that Cronin got a hand to which saw the ball fly across the face of goal and out for a corner.
In the third and final minute of stoppage time Stags then had to defend a corner to preserve their slender and hard-earned advantage.
The dependable Silk again headed away a United corner as Ebbsfleet began the second half in positive fashion.
Then the pace of Welsh beat Garner all ends up and he fouled the United man a foot outside the box to concede a free kick and an inevitable booking before Stags again cleared their lines.
But on 51 minutes Duffy was inches over the angle with a cushioned header from Williams' cross after Perry had started the move.
The game continued to ebb and flow and Vieria must have though he was in on goal on 52 minutes as he got goalside of Garner only for the Stags defender to stretch out a leg and knock the ball away from him.
And within a minute it was 2-0 to the home side.
Jones launched the ball forward into the United box where Briscoe had time to control, look up and steer a powerful low finish under Cronin from the left hand corner of the six yard box.
Stags quickly began to turn the screw and two corners followed while Perry failed to get a header on target from a good position from a long Nix cross.
Shulton curled one hopefully over the angle from distance for the rattled visitors on 59 minutes.
A thrilling Briscoe run brought a corner. But before it was taken, Briscoe was withdrawn to a warm ovation and Speight sent on. Perry did head the ball in from the corner but the whistle had already gone for pushing.
A Duffy flick almost gave Speight a scoring start three minutes after coming off, but with the keeper advancing, his flick took the ball too high and it dropped over the bar from 12 yards.
But Speight did find the net on 67 minutes, his second goal of the week.
Williams' superb pass behind the full back gave Perry sight of goal. He tried to curl a finish inside the far post but Cronin did well to claw it out only to see Speight throw himself at the ball. The keeper still managed to get a hand to the diving header but could not prevent it crossing the line.
Marriott took control of a far post Vieria header from Welsh's cross with other Ebbsfleet players lurking in the vicinity.
Thomas failed to get a decent contact onto a 75th minute effort and the ball flew up and landed easily into Marriott's grasp.
The referee was roundly booed when he booked Clare for a shot on the turn seconds after he had blown for offside.
United should have pulled one back eight minutes from time as Forshaw picked out an unmarked Shulton who guided a free header wide from 12 yards.
Soon after Shulton curled a 20 yard effort at Marriott and two minutes later stabbed an effort wide at the far post.
The unlucky Shulton had another effort blocked while Stags three times came close to a fourth as Speght, Clare and garner all missed the target.
Speight was well wide with a hopeful shot, Clare was inches with a shot on the turn and Garner sent a header wide of the near post from a corner.
STAGS: Marriott; Silk, Jones, Garner, Armstrong; Briscoe (Speight 60) , Nix, Somner, Williams (Istead 86); Duffy (Clare 67), Perry. Subs: Sandercombe, Graham.
EBBSFLEET: Cronin; Salmon (Forshaw 80), Crooks, Charles, Collins; West (Wills 34), Shulton, Heeroo, Welsh 75; Vieira, Thomas. Subs: Pooley, Lamprell.
REFEREE: Dean Mohareb of Cheshire. 7/10
ATTENDANCE: 3,269 (52 away).
Mansfield Town 3 Ebbsfleet United 0
MANSFIELD Town cruised to a third successive home victory as they swept aside Ebbsfleet United this afternoon.
Rob Duffy put the Stags ahead in the first half before Louis Briscoe and substitute Jake Speight killed the game off with goals after the break.
The Stags had to be patient early on with Lance Cronin producing a fingertip save from Louis Briscoe while at the other end, Magno Vieira shot just wide after getting the better of Mansfield's Gary Silk.
But the breakthrough came on the half hour mark when Craig Armstrong whipped in a superb cross from the left that curled to the back post. Duffy, onside, found himself in acres of space and kept his composure to take a touch before firing across Cronin and into the bottom corner.
On the stroke of half time Ebbsfleet debutant Simon Thomas went close with a free kick from the edge of the box.
Shortly after the break, the Stags doubled their lead when Briscoe raced beyond the static Ebbsfleet defence to meet Luke Jones' ball over the top. And inside the box, with nobody around him, he made no mistake by fire beyond Cronin from close range.
Speight then came off the bench to score for the third successive home match.
Williams picked out Perry on the left of the box. His shot was well saved by Cronin but it fell to Speight, who, off balance, managed to lean back and get enough power in his header to send the rebound over the line.
STAGS: Marriott, Silk, Armstrong, Garner, Jones, Williams (Istead, 86), Nix, Somner, Briscoe (Speight, 60), Duffy (Clare, 68), Perry. Subs: Sandercombe, Graham
EBBSFLEET: Cronin, Salmon (Forshaw, 80), Collins, Crooks, Charles, West (Wills, 34), Shulton, Heeroo, Welsh (Ginty,75), Vieira, Thomas. Subs: Pooley, Lamprell
Referee: Dean Mohareb (Cheshire)
Attendance: 3,269 (52 visitors)
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