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Season 04/05 Stagsnet Match Report
Coca-Cola League 2
Mansfield Town  
4 - 1
 Northampton Town
Asamoah 13, Corden 44, 86, Larkin 54.
 Sabin 37.
Attendance: 5173 (1063 from Northampton)
Date: 5th September 2004

Martin Shaw at Field Mill


The Stags produced a master class in finishing to destroy Northampton 4-1 at a boiling hot Field Mill this afternoon.

The Stags were unchanged from the side that had tonked Yeovil 4-1 six days ago. Asamoah was playing against his former club. The Cobblers themselves included on loan keeper Paul Rachubka, who played for Huddersfield against the Stags at Cardiff, Eric Sabin, a close season target for the Stags, and Scott McGleish who has scored for more clubs against the Stags than I’ve had hot dinners.

The first half was an even affair with both teams coping well with the viciously hot temperature. On 9 minutes Larkin had a great chance to open the scoring when he was through 1-on-1 against the keeper but fluffed his lines and instead of firing under the keeper or chipping it over him, he shot straight at Rachubka. But the Stags took the lead on 13 minutes with a superbly worked goal. Rhys Day sprayed a great ball out to the left wing, where Corden carried the ball to the byeline and planted a left footed cross onto the head of Asamoah 6 yards out who beat the keeper with a firm header. It really was a well worked effort.

The Cobblers equalizer on 37 minutes was, by contrast, a scrappy affair and one which the Stags defence should have prevented. The ball pinged around the Stags box following a corner in a game of head tennis and should have been cleared before Sabin outjumped both Artell and Day to head into the corner of the net. Possibly Pilkington could have also claimed the ball before the final header. In between, there were chances for both sides with McGleish and Lowe both missing good chances for the visitors and Neil being denied at the other end.

But before half time the Stags were in front and it was another cracking goal. This time Asamoah returned the favour for Wayne Corden. Asamoah rose excellently to collect a high ball in the centre of the park, and played a fine ball out to Corden on the left. Corden’s first touch took him inside a defender, he then beat another, and then crashed a powerful shot just inside the keeper’s left hand post. Corden had had his penalty saved by Rachubka at Cardiff and while this didn’t make up for it, it was still a sweet moment.

Half time 2-1

It was 3-1 nine minutes after half-time and Asamoah was involved again. He was the only player within 40 yards of the Cobblers goal with 3 defenders surrounding him, but he held the ball up until Larkin made his way into the box. Asamoah then crossed right onto Larkin’s boot who duly obliged with a volley past Rachubka for another classic goal. The Stags were now well on top and created a number of other chances while the Cobblers had some dangerous set plays but created little from open play. Pilkington made a world-class save in the final 10 minutes from a header by Richards, palming the ball off the line before Day cleared the danger.

On 86 minutes Corden produced the fourth tremendous goal of the day. Baptiste won a loose ball in midfield, and it fell to Corden. Corden beat two defenders before crashing a piledriver from 25 yards into the the net.

So the Stags ran out 4-1 winners for the second time in a week, and for the second time against a side that will surely be in the promotion shake-up at the end of the season. It was more wonderful entertainment for the Stags fans and the quality of the goals today was outstanding; in fact I can’t remember a game where the Stags scored as many goals of such high class. A great performance, especially from Asamoah and Corden who between them were involved in all four goals.

Man of Match: Derek Asamoah

Report by: Martin Shaw at Field Mill

Line Up:
Pilkington 7 Made a few good saves, including a world class one near the end. Possibly could have done better with the Cobblers goal.
McNiven 7 An assured performance at right back. Got forward well and had one decent shot.
Artell 7 Generally did well in the air.
Day 7 Reasonably solid though was given a tough afternoon by Sabin in the air.
Buxton 7 Good game at left back.
Neil 7 Did well in a wide right role. Made some good runs.
John-Baptiste 7 Started poorly for the opening 15 minutes but excellent after that in a defensive midfield role.
MacKenzie 7 Very influential early on. Unlucky with one dipping shot in the second half.
Corden 9 Superb in the first half. Quiet in the second half until his second goal. Two outstanding goals and a fantastic cross for the first goal.
Larkin 7 Not at his best but still took his goal very well. Looked a bit out of sorts in the first half after missing a 1-on-1.
Asamoah 9 Outstanding. Gave the Cobblers defence problems for the entire 90 minutes. Scored one and made two more. Given a rousing reception by the Cobblers fans.
Sub Line Up:
Murray (for MacKenzie, 77) - Did well when he came on.
O’Neill (for Larkin, 85) -
Curtis (for Baptiste, 88) -
Subs not used: Williamson, Tait.
Opposition Line Up:
Rachubka, Westwood, Willmott, Chambers, Murray, Hughes (Bojic 73), Haslam, Low, Richards, Sabin, McGleish (Galbraith 73). Subs not used: Bunn, Youngs, Morison.
C Foy 8 Handled the game very well. Very few contentious decisions. Rightly turned down a Cobblers appeal for a penalty.

Season 04/05 Reports