After grinding out a 2-1 victory at home to Newport last Saturday, the Stags now embark on a south-western double header. And the first stop is Yeovil’s Huish Park, where the Stags won last season thanks to a Reggie Lambe header in the tenth minute of injury-time. And just one goal has been decisive in all three FL fixtures between the sides from last season onwards.
And at One Call Stadium last term, it was Yeovil’s turn to dish out an injury-time winner, a crucial one in the Glovers’ quest to avoid a third successive relegation, which at one stage seemed possible (From the Championship to the National League in successive seasons on the field). Yeovil avoided that due to other crucial three-pointers against York and Dagenham & Redbridge in early 2016.
The game at One Call Stadium between the sides early on this term ranks among the most heroic Stags games the previewer has ever checked, ranking among the Cambridge one in September 2003 and the AFC Wimbledon one in December 2014. The reason for that is that the Stags in those games had players red-carded, still won. In the case of the Yeovil game earlier this season, the Stags had a player sent off after just eight minutes, yet managed three points thanks to a Matt Green penalty, a stonewall one, converted midway through the second half.
At that time, the Stags were around the playoff zone, just like now, while Yeovil sit ten points above the zone which leads out of League Two the wrong way.
Last season, the Stags faced Yeovil for the first time in a decade. And both fixtures were won by the away team in injury-time. At Yeovil, Reggie Lambe headed home the winner in the tenth minute of injury-time, while at One Call Stadium last March, Dickson netted the Yeovil winner in the first minute of stoppage-time.
Then, Yeovil in their second FL season, were on the up, scoring goals left right and centre, also conceding quite a lot. The Glovers then netted 90 times, but also conceded 65, three more than did then relegated Cambridge during the 2004-05 season, which gave Yeovil their second championship within three year as the Glovers had won the current National League in big style just two seasons earlier. No wonder that Yeovil played no goal-less fixture in their second FL season.
The feat of scoring and conceding goals left, right and centre was proved in the Stags v Yeovil fixtures during the 2004-05 campaign. Early on that season, Yeovil travelled to Mansfield on a 2004 August Bank Holiday Monday and succumbed to a three-goal blitz inside six minutes midway through the second half. After the goal blitz, Adam Murray, who managed the Stags last August, came on as sub.
At Yeovil later on that term, it was the Glovers’ turn to score three times inside ten minutes to win 5-2 at Huish Park, a scoreline that was harsh on the Stags. A few weeks later, Yeovil were crowned champions.
The Yeovil promotion to the FL then was long overdue as the Glovers for years had been one of the leading sides outside the FL, renowned for FA Cup giant-killings over the years.
Before their entry into the Football league in 2003, Yeovil were known as FA Cup giant-killers big style. On more than twenty occasions did the Glovers dump a league side out of the Cup. And the most memorable day in Yeovil’s glorious Cup history was as far back as January 29, 1949. On this day, the Glovers kayoed the then First Division eight-placed team Sunderland 2-1 in the fourth round at home, and this result must surely rank among the greatest FA cup giant-killings of all time! And to top that, the Yeovil winning goal was secured by an ex-Stag. Eric Bryant sent whole Somerset wild by netting the winner. Bryant had previously scored 17 goals in 35 league fixtures for the Stags, 15 of them in the 1946-47 season when the Stags finished bottom of the old div 3 (S).
In the previous round, Yeovil had disposed of Bury, then playing in the old 2nd division, at home to a 3-1 scoreline. Other teams that have been kayoed by Yeovil over the years include Crystal Palace, Fulham, Blackpool and Colchester, the latter two in the 2000-01 season when the Glovers nearly accounted for Bolton in the third round.
After the departure of Paul Sturrock last season, Darren Way, who played in both fixtures against the Stags in 2004-05 just like he did in the Glovers’first-ever FL campaign and as a player oversaw Yeovil’s march from the current National League to League One in over 200 games, took over the Glovers’ managerial post.
Played for both sides: George Anderson, Fergus Bell, Kim Book, Eric Bryant, David Coles, Derek Dawkins, Martin Gritton, Fred Holbeach, Henry Jones, Jake Kean, William Kirk, John McClelland, Paul McLoughlin, John Mitten, Kenneth Murray, Kieran Murtagh, Gary Roberts, Jack Roy, Brian Thompson, Paul Warne, Jonathan Worthington. Apart from the above-mentioned Bryant, the Stags’ first-ever international John McClelland is best known. He played a couple of games for the Glovers at the end of their 1993-94 Conference campaign. Jake Kean was Yeovil goalie on loan during a handful League One games two seasons ago.
Expect a tight game at Huish Park. Come on Mansfield!
Home: P 4, W 2, D 0, L 2, GF 5, GA 3
Away: P 3, W 1, D 1, L 1, GF 4, GA 6
Season Home Date Away Date
2003-04 0-1 2003-09-20 1-1 2004-03-27 Div 3
2004-05 4-1 2004-08-30 2-5 2005-04-09 League Two
2015-16 0-1 2016-05-03 1-0 2015-10-21 League Two
2016-17 1-0 2016-08-16 (at Mansfield) League Two