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SUPERB STAGS WIN AT CRAWLEY
19th November 2009 16:52


Blue Square Premier
Crawley 0 - 2 Mansfield Town
Speight 11, Heckingbottom 76. Somner sent off 69.
Attendance: 883 (177 from Mansfield + approx 70 more in the stand)

Date: 14 November 2009

Martin Shaw at Broadfield Stadium

Superb Mansfield Town produced their best away performance of the season to deservedly win the three points at Crawley on Saturday afternoon. Crawley had already won 6 home league games this season, as many as Mansfield, but the Stags were in dominant mood despite having to play the last 21 minutes with 10 men after Matt Somner was sent off. The Stags led at half time through Jake Speight's close range finish from a corner. Speight, playing on the right, was outstanding in the first half and deserved his goal. The Stags were guilty of missing some good chances, and when Somner picked up two yellows in three minutes, the Stags briefly looked as though they might surrender the lead, but a perfectly placed free kick from Paul Heckingbottom sealed the win on 76 minutes.

Man of the Match: Jake Speight

Stagsnet report in the Match Centre

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Report from Crawley Observer:

Crawley Town 0-2 Mansfield Town
14 November 2009
MANSFIELD have completed the double over Crawley with a well deserved 2-0 win here at the Broadfield Stadium despite finishing the game with ten men.

Jake Speight tapped Mansfield into an 11th minute lead after some poor home defending from a corner.

Danny Forrest had Reds best chance of the half firing inches wide across goal and Mansfield were reduced to ten men when Matt Sommer was handedADVERTISEMENTa second yellow card.

With the home fans urging their team on it was Mansfield who dealt the decisive blow when Paul Heckinbottom curled in a free kick just seven minutes after the sending off and Calum Willock somehow deflected the ball over the bar from two yards right at the death.

90 mins: Goodness knows how Crawley don't score. Simon Rusk strikes to the back post where Willock is there unmarked two ayrds from goal but it deflects off his shin and somehow clears the bar. Definately not Crawley's day today.

88 mins: Reds have looked pretty short of ideas in the final third today, typified by Pinault's ambitious effort from a very tight angle after the ball had come back to him from a corner. They've battled hard but Mansfield deserve the win.

85 mins: Mansfield sub. Perry comes off for Rob Duffy.

80 mins: Ryan Williams and Perry exchange passes and Williams goes for the near post but just misses the targtet. Mansfield replace Speight with Gary Mills.

76 mins: GOAL FOR MANSFIELD. Paul Heckingbottom curls a free kick into the bottom corner to give ten-man Mansfield a 2-0 lead and surely all three points. Reds committed men forward and Mansfield broke with three on one, but Broadhurst got back to make a lunging challenge on the edge of the box to earn himself a yellow card. Heckingbottom curled the resulkting free kick round the wall and right into the bottom corner.

Yellow card for Perry.

The home crowd are urging their team forward against the ten men of Mansfield. The Reds have just under 20 minutes to get back into this game.

69 mins: RED CARD. Matt Sommer is sent off for second yellow card for a late tackle on Karl Broadhurst. Mansfield bring on Steven Istead for Blair Sturrock.

63 mins: Crawley sub. Charlie Ademeno replaces Forrest upfront.

60 mins: Couple of chances for Mansfield. First Jordan makes a smart stop to keep out a vicious effort from Speight. The his kick is headed back towards his goal and Blair Sturrock beats him to the ball, his effort at goal looks to be heading in but Quinn is back to clear off the line.

56 mins: Broadhurst's clearance strikes Quinn and Speight picks up the ball and fires out at goal which requires a smart stop from Jordan to keep it out. From the goal kick the ball is headed back towards his goal and Blair Sturrock gives chase. He gets there ahead of Jordan to slide an effort at goal, but Quinn has raced back to clear off the goal line.

52 mins: Calum Willock starts a move by releasing Malcolm down the right, he cuts inside and slides the ball to Rusk who is well forward. The defender fires an early shot across goal which Forrest just can't get a toe to sliding in. Good break by Crawley and moire positive signs ealr in this second-half.

47 mins: Good start to the half by Crawley. They threaten with a couple of early corners and from the second win a free kick right on the edge of the area. Pinault curls at goal but it lacks the pace to trouble Marriott.

45 mins: Two half-time subs for Crawley. Simon Rayner obviously hadn't shaken off an earlier injury and is replaced by Nick Jordan in goal and Michael Malcolm replaces the ineffectual Barry Cogan on the left of midfield.

MANSFIELD lead Crawley 1-0 at the break from Jake Speight's early goal here at the Broadfield Stadium.

Speight - who has been a menace throughout - tapped home after the hosts failed to deal with a corner, and Mansfield should have made it 2-0 right on the stroke of half-time but Reds' keeper Simon Rayner saved at the feet of Kyle Perry.

Crawley's best chance came when Danny Forrest flashed an effort inches wide of the far post, and although Mansfield have been the better team the Reds are still very much in this game.

45 mins: Mansfield should have made it 2-0. Speight slips Perry in behind the defence and it's one-on-one, but Perry's first touch is just a tad too heavy and Rayner gets down at his feet to m ake the save. The goalkeeper did very well there.

42 mins: A Clumsey challenge on the edge of the box gives Mansfield a chance from a free kick. It comes off the wall but a second effort deflects off the head of Gary Silk but flies just wide.

40 mins: A cross from the right lands at Cogan in the box but it bounces up and strikes his knee. I don't think he expected that to come through to him but a better touch and he was in there.

Worrying moment for Crawley as Raynor gathers a cross well but lands awkwardly and stays down. After a bit of treatment though he's back on his feet again.

34 mins: Forrest picks up a ball over the top looks to take on the last defender, he takes the chance with his left foot and it's just a whisker away from the far post. By far Crawley's best effort by their best player so far.

Kyle Perry hardly started as Reds' fans' favourite player after his two goals in the reverse fixture, but a theatrical dive and scream means he's being booed by the home supporters every time he touches the ball. Assistant boss Paul Raynor wasn't too impressed with his antics either and wasn't shy to let him know.

28 mins: Suddenly Crawley are through the middle with Smith who opts to play in Forrest instead of have a go himself, Forrest looks odds on to score but keeper Alan Marriott makes a close range save. Forrest was offside anyway but perhaps Smith should have gone himself.

25 mins: Crawley have a free kick in a dangerous position from the right, but again Thomas Pinault's delivery isn't good enough and Mansfield break with the goal scorer Speight racing down the right. He feeds Blair Sturrock inside but his left-foot shot is straight at Rayner.

The pitch here at the Broadfield is a real credit to the groundsman, despite the heavy rain which has seen plenty of games called off the turf looks imaculate. Not much to report on since the goal.

15 mins: Crawley's best spell of the game so far. It started with Barry Cogan drifting in from the left and feeding Simon Rusk on the right, the ball was worked into the middle where Ben Smith played a one-two with Forrest but his dinked ball into the box was headed clear.

Yellow card for Chris Giles for a late challenge.

11 mins: GOAL FOR MANSFIELD. Jake Speight opens the scoring for Mansfield after some shocking Crawley defending from two corners. The first one wasn't dealt with but the second was even worse, no one was even challenging the header at goal which Chris Giles cleared off the line, but his clearance was only as far as Speight who had the simplest of tasks from two yards. 1-0.

3 mins: Reds keeper Simon Rayner gives his teammates an early scare by sliding onto a ball outside his box and trying to control it with his chest, only to see Ryan Wiliams steal the ball off him, but luckily his ball in comes straight back to the stopper.

DESPITE two days of heavy rain today's match at the Broadfield is on with the pitch described by the Crawley groundsman as 'perfect' - and it looks it.

Crawley are looking to avenge their 4-0 hiding on the opening day of the season at Mansfield, and as expected Danny Forrest continues upfront after his two goals against York.

Reds will be weary of Mansfield striker Kyle Perry, who scored two against them in that match, and it will be interesting to see how both teams deal with the high winds which is sure to be a factor.

Crawley: Simon Rayner, Simon Rusk, Chris Giles, Karl Broadhurst, Danny Forrest, Thomas Pinault, Glenn Wilson, Barry Cogan, Adam Quinn, Ben Smith, Calum Willock.
Subs: Eddie Hutchinson, Charlie Ademeno, Lewis Killeen, Michael Malcolm, Nick Jordan.

Mansfield: Alan Marriott, Paul Heckingbottom, Luke Jones, Scott Garner, Matt Sommer, Ryan Williams, Gary Silk, Jake Speight, Kyle Perry, Blair Sturrock, Michael Brough.
Subs: Gary Mills, Rob Duffy, Craig Armstrong, Steven Istead, Edward Eley.

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Crawley 0 Mansfield Town 2, Saturday 14th November 2009
CHAD.co.uk, 13 November 2009, By Stephen Thirkill

BATTLING Stags showed their promotion pedigree after defeating Crawley 2-0 away with an assured performance – despite playing the last 20 minutes with 10 men.
Stags, who looked dangerous throughout the game, got off to the perfect start when man-of-the match Jake Speight fired David Holdsworth's men into the lead.

And, despite losing tough-tackling midfielder Matt Somner to a harsh second yellow card, Mansfield showed real unity and belief to kill off the game on 77 minutes through a curling Paul Heckingbottom free-kick.

It was nothing more than Stags deserved as they made it five wins on the road already this season to extend their unbeaten streak to six.

It was a marked improvement from the FA Cup draw with Forest Green as Stags made much better use of their possession with improved ball retention.

Throughout the game Mansfield always appeared to have far too much for their opponents, who struggled to get to grip with the Stags attacking options.

Winger Williams once again provided a superb outlet on the flank with his pace, while the power and work-rate of Speight and Perry and the guile of Sturrock was too much for the Crawley rearguard.

Striker Rob Duffy and midfielders Steven Istead and Gary Mills all dropped to the bench as part of a re-shuffle of the starting line-up.

In came tricky winger Ryan Williams, tough-tackling Matt Somner and Blair Sturrock as Stags reverted to a 4-4-1-1 formation.

Ahead of the game Holdsworth had warned as many as six places were up for grabs in the forward areas after the disappointing performance in last week's FA Cup tie at Forest Green.

Both teams struggled to impose themselves in the early stages as the swirling wind came out on top.

But it was Stags who began to take control of the game with some solid possession football.

And it was Mansfield who took the lead after their first chance of the game when Luke Jones latched on to a Ryan Williams corner after 11 minutes from six yards.

His shot was deflected off Garner before being swept in from Jake Speight from just two yards out after the shot had been cleared off the line.

It was a well deserved strike as Mansfield showed a marked improvement in the first 20 minutes from their form in the Forest Green clash, with both the passing and balance of the side likely to have pleased boss David Holdsworth.

Sturrock then warmed the hands of Rayner in the Crawley goal from outside the box after the lively Speight had picked him out following a lighting counter-attack on 25 minutes.

Crawley, who were thumped 4-0 at Field Mill on the opening day of the season, threatened after the half hour when Calum Willock saw his drive from a tight angle blocked for a corner.

Moments later Danny Forrest drilled a low shot just a few feet wide of Marriott's upright after he out-paced Gary Silk as Crawley turned up the pressure.

But Stags rode the storm and nearly doubled their lead with four minutes remaining in the half after a free kick from 20 yards.

Williams thumped his effort against the wall, before Heckingbottom's drilled strike from the rebound deflected just wide of Scott Garner.

And in injury time Stags blew another golden chance to take a 2-0 lead after Perry was played clean through on goal by the increasingly infuential Speight.

But with the goal at his mercy Perry's second touch let him down giving Rayner the chance to bravely gather the ball.

Crawley started the second half brighlty and Somner was forced to clear off the line after Danny Forest sent a header goal-bound in the opening two minutes of the half.

Pinault then sent a free-kick straight into the arms of Marriott a moment later.

Full-back Simon Rusk then threatened the Stags goal on 52 minutes, but he dragged his shot wide after a flowing end to end move led by a Willock charge down the left flank.

But Mansfield always looked threatening on the break with Perry proving a tricky customer for the home defence.

And Perry was once again close to making it 2-0 before his rasping shot was parried away by substitute goalkeeper Nick Jordan.

Mansfield once again showed their danger on the break when Williams sprinted half the length of the field after being released by a quick-thinking Marriott throw out.

Williams then nearly delivered an inch perfect pass to the feet of Perry, who was snuffed out by the diving Jordan.

But Stags were put on the back foot on 69 minutes when midfielder Matt Somner was given his second yellow card by referee Burt, despite appearing to win the ball following an exchange in midfield.

Holdsworth re-juggled as he looked to protect the winning lead and brought Steven Istead on for Sturrock to pack the midfield for the expected onslaught.

Despite being a man light, Stags made a real hash of a glorious chance to kill the game off with 15 minutes to go when they had a two on one break after defending a corner.

Williams and Perry broke at speed but failed to make the most of the counter-attack as Perry sloppily gave the ball away when trying to play the on-rushing Williams in.

But that miss was soon forgotten when Paul Heckingbottom drilled a free-kick low into the right corner past the diving Jordan on 77 minutes for his first Mansfield Town goal.

It should have been 2-1 in one minute into injury time, but amazingly Willock somehow managed to shoot over the bar from just one yard out after latching on to a shot across the box.

But Stags were not to be beaten as they held out for their latest victory on the road.

CRAWLEY: Rayner (Jordan 46 mins) Rusk, Giles, Broadhurst, Forrest (Ademeno 61 mins), Pinault, Wilson, Cogan (Malcolm 46 mins), Quinn, Smith, Willock. Subs not used: Hutchinson, Killeen.

MANSFIELD: Marriott, Heckingbottom, Jones, Garner, Somner, Williams, Silk, Speight (Mills 82 mins), Perry (Duffy 85 mins), Sturrock, Brough. Subs not used: Armstrong, Eley.

REFEREE:

ATTENDANCE: 883 (177)

MAN OF MATCH: Jake Speight

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Crawley 0 Mansfield Town 2
Evening Post report

GOALS from Jake Speight and Paul Heckingbottom handed ten-man Mansfield Town their third consecutive Blue Square Premier away victory at Crawley this afternoon.
The Stags put in one of their best performances of the season and were always in charge at a windy Broadfield Stadium.
They went in front in the 11th minute when Speight tucked home his sixth goal of the season following a corner.
And, after Matt Somner had seen red, Paul Heckingbottom's first strike for the Stags wrapped up three points for David Holdsworth's side.
The result saw Mansfield complete the double over the Sussex club after a 4-0 win over the Red Devils at Field Mill on the opening day of the season.
After the opening exchanges had been contested in midfield, Barry Cogan looked poised to shoot from the edge of the box until Speight intervened.
Mansfield won the game's first corner in the tenth minute and from it Luke Jones had a shot deflected inches wide.
But the Stags were celebrating from the flag kick that immediately followed, again delivered by Ryan Williams.
Jones initial shot was diverted goalwards by Garner and, though cleared off the by a home defender, Speight was in the right place to hammer home the follow up from point-blank range.
A swift counter attack by Mansfield, led by Speight, gave Sturrock the chance to let fly but his curled effort from the edge of the area was straight at Simon Rayner.
Just before the half hour mark, Ben Smith broke clear and Alan Marriott made a excellent save, but a flag had already been raised for offside.
The home side won their first corner in the 31st minute but Mansfield comfortably cleared the danger.
But Danny Forrest was not too far away as he outfoxed Gary Silk and drove an angled shot inches wide of the right-hand post.
Kyle Perry had three Mansfield players to pick out in the middle after a poor clearance from Rayner, but his cross was cut out at the near post
The Stags won a free-kick on the edge of the box as the break approached and, though Williams curled into the wall, Heckingbottom fired goalwards from the rebound and Garner glanced inches wide of the right-hand post.
Mansfield had a golden opportunity to double their advantage on the stroke of half-time when Speight put Perry away but he overran the ball, allowing Rayner to race off his line and make a block with the striker shooting on the stretch.
Crawley made two changes at the break with Nick Jordan coming on for Rayner and Michael Malcolm for Cogan.
And the Red Devils instantly went on the attack. First Matt Somner had to clear a header from Giles off the line before Marriott had to hold onto a shot from Thomas Pinault from a direct free-kick.
A mistake from Silk in the Crawley half allowed the hosts to break quickly only for Simon Rusk to drag his finish well wide.
But Mansfield were still very much a threat when they got forward and Speight, cutting in from the right, brought a splendid save from replacement keeper Jordan.
The Crawley shot stopper also did well diving at the feet of Perry as he chased a pinpoint through ball from Williams.
Controversy reigned when Mansfield were reduced to ten men as Somner was shown a red card for two bookings within the space of four minutes.
The second of those certainly looked harsh and put the visitors up against it after they had looked comfortable for so long.
But Mansfield were not down for long as they went 2-0 up in the 77th minute.
They broke quickly and, though failing to make the most of a two on one situation, Speight was fouled for a free-kick right on the edge of the D.
Heckingbottom stepped up and picked his spot brilliantly in the left-hand corner with a sweet shot around the wall that gave Jordan no hope.
Another decent opening came the Stags' way when substitute Steven Istead, on for Sturrock, teed up Williams who scuffed his finish from a tight angle.
Crawley's day was summed up in stoppage time when Calum Willock somehow diverted Rusk's low drive over the top from virtually on the goal line.

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