SUPER STAGS IN VITAL VICTORY
See match centre for Stagsnet reports of a quite memourable night at Field Mill.
Teamtalk: Chris Greenacre and Andy White were on target for Mansfield to earn an important 2-1 win over play-off rivals Cheltenham at Field Mill.
Due to crowd congestion, the game was delayed by 15 minutes as what looked to be one of the biggest home crowds of the season gathered. And they were not disappointed as Mansfield took the lead after just four minutes when White's header from Scott Sellars' free-kick came back off the far post and was turned in from close range by Greenacre for his 28th goal of the season.
In an end-to-end encounter, The Robins began to take a grip on the game midway through the first half, but Nathan Tyson's header from Tony Naylor's cross went straight at Kevin Pilkington. Cheltenham were level on 25 minutes though when Tyson was hauled down by full-back Stuart Reddington on the edge of the area. Russell Milton sent the resulting free-kick towards the near post and Mark Yates powered his header home.
Reddington poked the ball forward towards Greenacre after 37 minutes, but Steve Book read the situation well and cleared the danger from his 18-yard line. Almost immediately after the break and Greenacre went close again when he received a throw-in from the left, but his shot on the turn flashed wide. The visitors went close themselves after 70 minutes when Milton's free-kick from just outside the box was deflected over the bar. Sellars then saw his free-kick from 25 yards out superbly tipped onto the post by Book before Mansfield put themselves back in the lead a minute later when Bobby Hassell drilled the ball across the box for Andy White to get the vital touch, sliding in for his second goal in four days. The Robins threw everything forward to try and earn a point, but it was the home side who went closest to scoring again when Book did well to save at Wayne Corden's feet. Mansfield leapfrog Cheltenham into third with the result, two points ahead but having played a game more.
ITV: Mansfield blew the Third Division promotion wide open again with a superb 2-1 win over fellow high-fliers Cheltenham. The Stags leapfrogged the visitors back into third place as Andy White struck home in the 76th minute to seal the win. After a delayed kick-off to let Mansfield's biggest crowd of the season file into Field Mill, the hosts made the perfect start when Chris Greenacre netted from close range with just four minutes gone after Andy white had headed Scott Sellars' free-kick against the post. But Cheltenham fought back and deservedly levelled after 25 minutes as Mark Yates headed home from Russell Milton's free-kick. After the break however, Mansfield shaded the action and, after Sellars had hit the Cheltenham post with a free-kick, they grabbed the winner a minute later when White stretched out a leg to divert Bobby Hassell's low cross home.
TEAM STATS (Stags/Cheltenham)
15 Goal Attempts 10
7 On Target 4
6 Off Target 5
2 Hit Woodwork 1
7 Corners 3
18 Fouls 17
4 Offsides 4
Young striker Andy White grabbed his second vital goal in four days to throw the race for the third automatic promotion place wide open. Fourteen minutes from time, White stuck out a foot and diverted Bobby Hassell's piledriver past keeper Steve Book's despairing dive and just inside the post to clinch victory. The goal capped Mansfield's second-half revival after they had struggled to hold in-form Cheltenham in the first half. Robins strikers Nathan Tyson and Tony Naylor had caused the home defence numerous problems as the visitors looked to extend their amazing away run to nine wins in 11 games. But the second half was a different story. Veteran midfielder Scott Sellars played a starring role and three times went close to a deserved goal. His chip was just saved by Book, his free-kick struck the bar and then a mazy run was only stopped by a last-ditch tackle. The Robins had given a first start to on-loan Reading striker Tyson and they should have snatched the lead after just 90 seconds when John Brough sprung the offside trap, but Naylor's first touch let him down. The Stags immediately capitalised when leading scorer Chris Greenacre gave Mansfield's biggest crowd of the season something to cheer. White's towering header from a Sellars free-kick struck the post and Greenacre reacted quickest to head in his 28th goal of the season from close range. In a storming start, Cheltenham twice went close to a quick equaliser. First Mark Yates glanced Neil Howarth's cross wide and then Tyson grazed the outside of the post when clean through. At the other end Craig Disley's swerving volley was tipped around the post by the diving Book as the action rapidly switched from end to end. After Tyson had again squandered a clear chance, this time heading straight at keeper Kevin Pilkington, Yates headed Cheltenham level at the near post from Russell Milton's free-kick. John Finnigan almost gave the Robins the lead nine minutes later, but after pouncing on Martin Pemberton's slip he fired across the face of goal and narrowly wide. With Cheltenham now in control another mistake by Pemberton in the 37th minute let in Tyson again, only for the striker to fail to hit the target yet again. A minute into the second half, Greenacre's flashing drive flew inches past the top corner as the second half followed the same action-packed vein.
Latest | April 2002