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Archived News from August 2011

IMPROVED STAGS HELD BY BRAINTREE
25th August 2011 10:02


Blue Square Bet Premier
Braintree Town 1 - 1 Mansfield Town
Bailey-Dennis 54. Briscoe 47.

Attendance: 875 (approx. 200 from Mansfield)

Date: 20 August 2011

Martin Shaw at Cressing Road

Mansfield Town were left very frustrated after their first ever visit to Braintree Town, having dominated much of the game but not having been able to capitalise on their possession. After a tight first half, the Stags took the lead on 47 minutes when Louis Briscoe fired home after Matt Green's shot had been parried by the keeper. Braintree equalised on 54 minutes when the linesman adjudged that the ball had crossed the line following a scramble from a corner. After that, Mansfield were completely in charge but couldn't force the ball in. Nevertheless, this was an improved display as the Stags displayed the steel and determination that Paul Cox had demanded and were rarely troubled at the back. 6 ft 7 inch defender Ben Futcher did well on his debut, as did Martin Riley, the central midfield of Murray and Howell ran the game, while Lindon Meikle was impressive on the wing and Matt Green had his best game so far up front.

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IRON HELD BY MANSFIELD
http://www.braintreetownfc.org.uk
Bailey-Dennis levels - after visitors take the lead
Braintree Town and Mansfield Town shared the spoils from Saturday afternoon's Blue Square Bet Premier draw. Iron had the better of the first half and Marks was denied fourth minute opener when keeper Alan Marriott saved well from his first time shot while at the other end twice Matthew Green had shots blocked by home keeper Nathan McDonald. The visitors had the better of the second half and took the lead a minute into the second half when McDonald saved Matt Green's first close range shot with his legs but the ball ran comfortably to Briscoe who fired the rebound home. The lead though lasted just nine minutes as Braintree pushed forward. A cross from the right wing from Ben Wright saw Matt Paine head the ball towards the goal line where Adam Bailey-Dennis's back header did cross the goal line before the Stags' defence kicked it clear. In the latter stages of the second half the Stags had plenty of possession, but the Iron defence stood firm with Bailey-Dennis and Paine outstanding. Iron Manager Alan Devonshire said afterwards: "I'm pleased with a point because what with all that had gone on during the week we knew it would be a totally different game. We certainly looked tired particularly in the last 20 minutes and again it's a big learning curve for the players. But they did well today but I think I will have to perhaps freshen up the side for the next two games which will be tough."
Team: McDonald, O'Connor, Bailey-Dennis, Paine, Reason (Quinton 73), Symons, Davis, Yiadom, Marks, Wright (Chilaka 83). Subs not used: Constantine, James-Lewis, Jones. Referee: Graham Horwood. Attendance: 875 (212 away).

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Braintree 1 v 1 Mansfield Town, Saturday 20th August
CHAD report

STAGS are still looking for their first win of the season after they failed to turn possession into goals in the 1-1 draw against Braintree Town, reports Stephen Thirkill.

http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town-fc/braintree_1_v_1_mansfield_town_saturday_20th_august_1_3699589

Mansfield dominated large periods of the game, including virtually all the second half, but all too often struggled to convert chances and possession into goals.

Anthony Howell and Matt Green were guilty of missing decent half chances throughout the first 45 minutes as both sides enjoyed spells of possession.

It looked like Stags would be heading for all three points when a simple Louis Briscoe tap-in gave Mansfield the lead two minutes into the second-half.

But once again the Mansfield defence showed worrying vulnerabilities from set-pieces as they failed to clear an O'Connor corner allowing Sean Marks to prod home an equaliser just seven minutes later.

Despite sustained spells of pressure, Paul Cox's men were unable to crack the determined rearguard of the Essex outfit as they poured forward in the second half.

Meikle had an excellent chance to seal all three points on 70 minutes when he curled a left-footed effort comfortable wide after finding a yard of space in the box.

Despite the draw, Stags can take heart from a solid defence display and a spirited response after Braintree had levelled the game.

Mansfield will now need their key players to shine bright on Tuesday when they look for their first win of the season against fierce rivals Luton Town at Field Mill.

Stags went into the game with a point to prove following their 3-0 beating at Gateshead in midweek and furious boss Paul Cox rang the changes.

The towering Ben Futcher replaced Tom Naylor at the heart of the Mansfield defence following his one-month loan signing from Richie Barker's Bury.

While midfielder Jon Worthington and striker Paul Connor were dropped to the bench against the Blue Square South champions.

Anthony Howell also stepped into the central midfield berth to offer Stags an extra attacking dimension.

The Iron came into the game hoping to steamroll Mansfield in similar fashion to their 5-0 thumping of Grimsby on Tuesday night.

Stags had their first sniff on goal after four minutes when a fierce shot from Matt Green was deflected out for a corner by Jai Reason.

At the other end Sean Marks caused Stags bother moments later after he drifted away from Riley, before his powerful shot from distance was smartly saved low to his right by Alan Marriott.

Green registered Stags' first strike on target after 13 minutes when he latched on to a knock down by Howell, before he spun in the box and directed a tame shot into McDonald's palms.

Howell then nodded a header wide from a deep Kendrick free-kick as Mansfield began to get on top of the game.

As the first-half progessed Stags gained dominance of the midfield area, with Briscoe and Meikle looking threatening down their respective flanks.

Kendrick breathed a huge sigh of relief on 27 minutes after he chopped down Yiadom with a late tackle on the left touchline.

But referee Graham Hardwood gave the left-back one final warning before an early bath.

The home side came back into game with the pacey Yiadom looking the most likely man to break the deadlock as both sides continued to enjoy spells of possession without creating any clear-cut openings.

Green came close to opening the scoring on 39 minutes as Braintree once again failed to clear a deep-inswinging Kendrick free-kick.

But the striker failed to get the necessary power on his header to beat McDonald as the half ended goal-less.

Two minutes into the second-half Louis Briscoe fired Stags ahead with one of the simplest goals he will ever score.

Matt Green picked up the ball on the left side of the box before turning his marker inside out with a powerful run on goal.

The frontman then unleashed a hard low shot which was parried by McDonald.

But the goalkeeper failed to send the ball to safety allowing Briscoe to smash home from 10 yards out to the delight of the travelling fans.

The lead was short-lived though as Braintree levelled against the run of play just seven minutes later with the Stags defence once again showing their fragile state from set-pieces.

Matt Paine dropped into space at the back post from an O'Connor corner, before his headed knock down allowed Sean Marks to show his striker's instinct and poke home from a yard out.

The Stags fans were left incensed on 62 minutes when Symons appeared to stamp on the head of O'Neill as the pair got up from a tackle.

But he escaped without any punishment as both referee and linesman appeared to miss the incident.

Meikle missed an excellent chance to fire Stags back into the lead on 70 minutes after Howell played the winger in with an incisive lob over the head of Thomas.

But Meikle took one touch too many as he cut inside the box and fired his curling effort two yards wide of the right post.

Howell and Briscoe then both failed to a get telling touch to a Meikle cross as they burst into the box on 73 minutes as Stags continued to push for the winner.

Referee Harwood waved away appeals for a Stags penalty on 80 minutes when Briscoe appeared to be felled in the box after turning Paine in the box with some nifty footwork.

The frustrations continued to grow for on-top Mansfield a minute later as Green saw his thunderous effort blocked for a corner on 81 minutes after neat link up play with Adam Murray.

It was to be Stags last real chance of the game as they were forced to settle for one point.

BRAINTREE: McDonald, Thomas, Bailey-Dennis, Paine. Reason (Quinton 73 mins), Symons, Davis, Marks, Wright (Chilaka 82 mins), O'Connor, Yiadom. Subs: Constantine, Jones. James-Lewis.

STAGS: Marriott, O Neil, Futcher, Riley, Kendrick, Briscoe, Howell, Murray, Meikle, Dyer (Connor 81 mins), Green. Subs not used: Redmond, Wood, Worthington, Stevenson.

REFEREE: Graham Harwood:

BOOKINGS: Kendrick (7 mins - foul on Yiadom); O'Neill (29 mins – foul on Reason); Wright (72 mins – unsporting behaviour).

ATTENDANCE: 875.

STAGS MAN OF THE MATCH: Ben Futcher

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Braintree Town 1 Mansfield Town 1
Nottingham Post report, by Matt Halfpenny

MANSFIELD Town are still searching for their first victory of the season after three games, despite a much-improved display at newly-promoted Braintree.

http://www.thisisnottingham.co.uk/story-13171294-detail/story.html

Following a 3-0 drubbing at Gateshead in midweek, Paul Cox made four changes in a bid to earn his first three-point haul in charge of the Stags.

He certainly got a better performance in the second half, which they dominated after a first 45 minutes where neither side had shown much invention.

But Mansfield could not make the most of their pressure after the sides had exchanged goals early in the second period.

Louis Briscoe had put Mansfield in front just after the restart, only for a lapse in concentration at the back allowing Adam Bailey-Dennis to level nine minutes later.

The visitors pressed for much of the game thereafter but were unable to make the most of their superior possession and territorial advantage.

It was the hosts who had the first shot at goal early on when Andy Yiadom fed Sean Marks through the middle and he worked in a drive from just outside the box that Alan Marriott was always behind.

Mansfield threatened for the first time after a good run by Lindon Meikle down the right culminated in Matt Green trying his luck, but a deflection took the sting out of the shot, making it easy for Nathan McDonald.

Ross Dyer then went down under a heavy challenge in the box but, despite protestations from Mansfield fans, the referee was unmoved.

Luke O'Neill then swung over a centre only for Dyer's header to fly well wide.

As Mansfield began to get on top, O'Neill's deep centre was headed down by Dyer for Green, only for the former Oxford man to over-hit his attempted pass for Adam Murray.

At the other end, as Braintree broke quickly, Yiadom firing in a shot that was always drifting well wide.

With 39 minutes on the watch, new boy Ben Futcher showed his aerial power as he got a flick on an inswinging free-kick from the right that had to be hacked off the line by Aswad Thomas.

The Iron responded with a 30-yard effort from Jai Reason that whistled past the left-hand upright with Marriott scrambling.

As the second period got under way, the Stags took the lead within 90 seconds and though Briscoe netted it, the breakthrough owed much to Green.

Picking the ball up in the left-hand channel, he spun past his marker brilliantly and blasted a shot that was parried by the advancing McDonald.

But the ball broke kindly for Briscoe, who could barely miss, sweeping the ball into an unguarded net from close to the penalty spot.

As Mansfield looked to double their lead, Riley headed well wide from a corner before Green tried his luck from distance but found the midriff of McDonald.

However, all the Stags' good work was undone in the 54th minute when the hosts drew level.

A right wing corner was headed back across the face of goal by Matt Paine and Bailey-Dennis got the final touch, despite Mansfield's attempts to clear off the line.

Mansfield looked to bounce back quickly and Anthony Howell's low cross from the left almost found Green, but the ball just ran away from him.

Mansfield were incensed just after the hour mark when Nicky Symons escaped punishment after his boot came down on the back of the neck of the sliding O'Neill.

Green then got away down the right flank but his cross was just too far in front of Dyer.

A good opportunity came the way of Meikle soon after but he curled well wide when he should have hit the target.

As Mansfield's purple patch continued, Meikle sent in an inviting low pass that was inches from being turned in by both Green and Dyer.

Mansfield had another penalty claim turned down as Briscoe went down as he tried to charge onto Green's pass.

The Stags really began to turn up the heat as Green's shot was deflected over the top for a corner that was headed wide by Riley.

But even with the introduction of Paul Connor for Dyer, they failed to bag a winner

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IRON HELD BY MANSFIELD
http://www.braintreetown.org.uk
Bailey-Dennis levels - after visitors take the lead
Braintree Town and Mansfield Town shared the spoils from Saturday afternoon's Blue Square Bet Premier draw. Iron had the better of the first half and Marks was denied fourth minute opener when keeper Alan Marriott saved well from his first time shot while at the other end twice Matthew Green had shots blocked by home keeper Nathan McDonald. The visitors had the better of the second half and took the lead a minute into the second half when McDonald saved Matt Green's first close range shot with his legs but the ball ran comfortably to Briscoe who fired the rebound home. The lead though lasted just nine minutes as Braintree pushed forward. A cross from the right wing from Ben Wright saw Matt Paine head the ball towards the goal line where Adam Bailey-Dennis's back header did cross the goal line before the Stags' defence kicked it clear. In the latter stages of the second half the Stags had plenty of possession, but the Iron defence stood firm with Bailey-Dennis and Paine outstanding. Iron Manager Alan Devonshire said afterwards: "I'm pleased with a point because what with all that had gone on during the week we knew it would be a totally different game. We certainly looked tired particularly in the last 20 minutes and again it's a big learning curve for the players. But they did well today but I think I will have to perhaps freshen up the side for the next two games which will be tough."
Team: McDonald, O'Connor, Bailey-Dennis, Paine, Reason (Quinton 73), Symons, Davis, Yiadom, Marks, Wright (Chilaka 83). Subs not used: Constantine, James-Lewis, Jones. Referee: Graham Horwood. Attendance: 875 (212 away).

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Bailey-Dennis header holds Stags to a draw
Braintree Chronicle

BRAINTREE TOWN 1
MANSFIELD TOWN 1

http://www.thisistotalessex.co.uk/story-13199159-detail/story.html

ANY hopes Iron fans had of seeing another goal glut from their side like they did against Grimsby Town four days earlier were soon dashed in this entertaining encounter a Cressing Road on Saturday.

The Stags came for their debut at the ground with a definite game plan to stop the Iron from playing and controlling the midfield, which they did for most of the game, and to subdue the Iron striking duo of Sean Marks and Ben Wright, which again they did a reasonably good job of.

For the Iron players it's still all a big learning curve but again they adapted well, were the better side in the first half, but struggled to compete on equal terms in the final 20 minutes of the game where tiredness crept in and the visitors were quicker to the ball.

Clearly some of the Iron players at this level for the first time are going to struggle at such times, as they did in those last 20 minutes, but the side's overall resilience, work ethic and spirit will see them through.

Keeping with the same side that thrashed Grimsby they started well with Marks almost getting his name on the score sheet on four minutes forcing a great, low down save by keeper Alan Marriott having been set up by Andy Yiadom.

The winger gave his defender Joe Kendrick an uncomfortable time who was given a yellow card by referee Graham Horwood on six minutes and committed two further first half fouls on the Iron man and should have been dispatched for an early bath.

But he survived and so did the visitors who had newcomer, central defender Ben Futcher signed on a month's loan only hours before the kick-off and not knowing any of his team-mates, to thank for repeatedly stopping Marks and co from scoring.

At the other end Nathan McDonald was twice called on to stop the impressive Matthew Green from scoring, leaving the game a stalemate at the interval.

But within a minute of the restart the visitors caught the Iron rearguard cold and despite McDonald foiling a close range shot from Green with his legs the ball ran kindly into the path of Louis Briscoe who rammed the ball into the net.

Showing the character that's in this Iron side they were level on 54 minutes when Wright crossed the ball from the byline on the right to the far post where Matt Paine headed back into the goalmouth and Adam Bailey-Dennis back-headed the ball goalwards.

The assistant referee signalled that the ball had crossed the line and the Iron were level.

As the half progressed the Iron showed their tiredness and the visitors took more control of the game, but exceptional defending saw them hang on for a point.

The referee quite rightly turned down penalty claims from the visitors late on when Briscoe fell in the area – he should have been booked for diving in my view.

Iron substitute Chib Chilaka almost snatched a winner five minutes from time but a defender's last gasp tackle stopped him.

It would though have been an injustice on the visitors had they not returned home with a point

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