{ match reports }
 
An independent supporters' website dedicated to Mansfield Town FC
Season 23/24 Stagsnet Match Report
Carabao Cup (English Football League Cup) - Round 2
Sheffield Wednesday  
1 - 1
 Mansfield Town
Musaba 28. Mansfield won 5-4 on penalties
 
 Oates 85
Attendance: 10,724 (approx 1800 from Mansfield)
 
Date: 29 August 2023

STAGS THROUGH TO LEAGUE CUP 3rd ROUND AFTER PENALTY SHOOT-OUT WIN AT HILLSBOROUGH

By Martin Shaw at Hillsborough

Mansfield Town are through to the League Cup third round for the first time since 2005 after a penalty shoot-out win against Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough last night. It was a great night for the 1800 travelling Stags fans, and even though the Stags probably didn't deserve to win, there was some justice as the Stags clearly deserved to win here in the FA Cup last season and ended up losing that game.

Mansfield remain unbeaten this season. Sheffield Wednesday, promoted to the Championship in May, had lost all 4 league games this season, and had got past Stockport in Round 1 on penalties. So desperate for a win were Wednesday, that star player Barry Bannan, who hadn't expected to play, played the full 90 minutes.

The Owls were the better side in the first half and deservedly led at the break, as Josh Windass crossed from the right, Callum Paterson headed back across goal, and Anthony Musaba headed down and past Pym from 6 yards after 28 minutes. They could have been further ahead as Windass smashed a great shot against the bar from 25 yards. The Stags had a couple of chances as Aden Flint headed a free kick across goal and Lucas Akins headed straight at the keeper, and then Davis Keillor-Dunn sent a shot from 20 yards just over the bar.

Into the second half, and Christy Pym made a couple of superb saves in the opening 5 minutes, firstly a fabulous save from a Michael Ihiekwe header, and then from a Windass shot from 20 yards.

The Stags stayed in the game. Jordan Bowery made a great run forward after 58 minutes past a defender and sending a left footed shot just wide. Rhys Oates replaced Akins after 62 minutes and was straight into the action, through 1-on-1 with the keeper but firing wide. Bizarrely the linesman put his flag up for offside fully 5-10 seconds after the ball had gone out for a goal kick.

The Stags were right in the game now but the Owls hit the woodwork again after 79 minutes as Michael Smith chipped in a good cross from the right and Juan Delgado headed against the left post. I'm not sure if Pym got a touch to push it onto the post.
UPDATE: from a video from the opposite side, it’s clear that Pym did indeed push the header on to the post. Good save.

Mansfield equalised with an incredible goal 5 minutes from time. In the post match interview, Christy Pym joked that the move started 10 minutes from time! He wasn't far out, as Mansfield put together a move of 32 passes before Oates cut in from the left touchline and curled a superb shot from 20 yards into the bottom right corner of the net. What an incredible goal. 32 passes involving 10 of the 11 players (only Swan didn’t touch the ball).

Only 3 minutes of additional time was added on as the game went straight to a penalty shoot-out. The Stags' record in penalty shoot-outs isn't great but this side is made of sterner stuff, full of bottle and quality.

On the toss of the referee's coin, the penalties were at the opposite end from the Stags fans.

The Stags went first. Bowery, Maris and Keillor-Dunn buried their penalties, as Michael Smith, Windass and Bannan did the same for the Owls. Will Swan then had his penalty saved, but Pym then saved brilliantly, diving at full stretch to his right to save from Will Vaulks.

It was now sudden death. Oates scored, then Lee Gregory drew it level at 4-4. Flint stepped up to boos from many home fans, and sent the keeper the wrong way.

Liam Palmer had to score for Wednesday, but Pym made another brilliant save, diving to his left to push it away. The Stags were through. The fans celebrated. The players were probably too exhausted for wild celebrations.

Pym was clearly man of the match, a 10 out of 10 performance for multiple superb saves in normal time, and then two saves in the shoot-out. Lewis Brunt looked so comfortable on the ball on his first start. Flint was dominant in the air against the side he helped get promoted last season. Full backs Bowery and Macdonald were very good. Clarke was excellent in midfield, tough in the tackle and getting up to speed now. Akins didn't have his best game up front. Swan is getting up to speed after missing pre-season but still has a way to go. Oates was really lively when he came on and gave the home defence problems.

The draw for the third round is at 10.15 on Wednesday night. Nigel Clough said he wanted a home tie. I'd like a big Premier League club, the likes of Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea, (not Luton), away, or at home.
UPDATE: The Stags were drawn at home to Peterborough.
The last six balls in the hat were Liverpool, Manchester City, Newcastle, Leicester, Peterborough, Mansfield.
4 in 5 chance of a pretty plum draw from there, sadly we didn’t get it.

The next game is on Saturday, against Bradford at the One Call Stadium. The game should be approaching a full house. It should be a great atmosphere.

DETAILED REPORT :

Mansfield made three changes to the side that started against Stockport:
Out:
Oates (Clough: “he wasn’t fit to start tonight unfortunately”)
Williams (Clough: “he might have been able to do 5 or 10 minutes, it was his first start on Saturday since last February”)
Quinn (Clough: “he's got a 50:50 chance at best for Bradford game, he got a whack on his knee on Saturday”)
In: Swan, Brunt, Clarke.
Flint was captain against the side he played for last season.
Bowery was at right back, Brunt alongside Flint in central defence. Akins up front with Swan.
It was Brunt’s first start.
The Stags bench included young keeper Louie Turner (in addition to Flinders), George Cooper, McKeal Abdullah, Charlie Carter, Darien Wauchope, Jakub Kruszynski.

Sheffield Wednesday had a strong side including Barry Bannan, Callum Paterson, Josh Windass. Former Stags striker Lee Gregory was on the bench and was to come on in the second half.

The Owls were the better side in the first half. Good defending by Maris on Musaba after 3 minutes. A minute later, Dominic Iorfa headed well wide from a corner. Then Ashley Fletcher fired over the bar. On 6 minutes, Callum Paterson headed straight at Pym. After 10 minutes, a shot from Windass from 25 yards which Pym comfortably saved down to his right. Two minutes later, Paterson crossed and Pol Valentin sliced a shot well wide. Good keeping by Pym after 19 minutes, saving a deflected shot and importantly holding on to it with Musaba waiting for him to spill it. After 21 minutes, Pym pushed a Windass header wide. Two minutes after that Bannan fired high and wide from 18 yards after a slick move. It was all Wednesday.

A great tackle from Clarke after 25 minutes.

The Owls deservedly took the lead after 28 minutes. Josh Windass crossed from the right, Callum Paterson headed back across goal, and Anthony Musaba headed down and past Pym from 6 yards.

The Stags then created had a couple of chances as Flint headed a Reed free kick from 45 yards across goal and Akins headed straight at the keeper, after 31minutes. Then Keillor-Dunn pushed forward as the defence parted, and sent a shot from 20 yards just over the bar, a minute later. On 36 minutes, Reed fired a low shot from 28 yards wide of the left post.

The Owls could have been further ahead on 45+2 minutes as Windass smashed a great shot against the bar from 25 yards.

Swan broke straight to the other end, but over-ran the ball.

Wednesday deservedly ahead at the break, and clearly the better side. Nigel Clough said after the game: “I don't think we took advantage of the positions we got into in the first half. But we were up against better players and better defenders. We said to them at half-time just stay in it at 1-0 - then anything can happen like Newcastle v Liverpool at the weekend. Concede a second and the game is over.”

Half time 1-0

Good defending by Clarke in his area after 48 minutes.

Christy Pym made a couple of superb saves in the opening 5 minutes of the half. Firstly on 49 minutes, a fabulous save from a Michael Ihiekwe header, and then a minute later from a Windass shot from 20 yards.

The Stags stayed in the game. After 55 minutes, Jordan Bowery crossed in, Flint took it on his chest and his volley was deflected for a corner. Then Bowery made a great run forward after 58 minutes past a defender and sending a left footed shot just wide. At the other end, a great tackle by Bowery on Paterson after 59 minutes.

Rhys Oates replaced Akins after 62 minutes.

A good challenge by Brunt on Musaba after 63 minutes.

Oates was straight into the action on 66 minutes, through 1-on-1 with the keeper but firing wide. Bizarrely the linesman put his flag up for offside fully 5-10 seconds after the ball had gone out for a goal kick.

After 68 minutes, a Bannan free kick and Iorfa headed well over the bar.

After 70 minutes, Oates nicked the ball off Akin Famewo on the halfway line, and was through on goal, but Famewo got back with a brilliant tackle to rob Oates back.

The Owls brought on Lee Gregory and Michael Smith after 71 minutes. Gregory used to play for the Stags. Smith scored both goals in the FA Cup game last season, after Mansfield led 1-0 and the Stags were undeservedly beaten 2-1.

A great tackle by Brunt in the area after 72 minutes. After 73 minutes, Maris did well to block a rocket shot from Bannan for a corner. At the other end, Reed crossed and Swan headed goalwards but it was an easy save on the line.

The Stags were right in the game now but the Owls hit the woodwork again after 79 minutes as Michael Smith chipped in a good cross from the right and Juan Delgado headed against the left post. I'm not sure if Pym got a touch to push it onto the post.
UPDATE: from a video from the opposite side, it’s clear that Pym did indeed push the header on to the post. Good save.

Great skill by Keillor-Dunn after 80 minutes flicking the ball over his head in the centre circle.

Mansfield equalised with an incredible goal 5 minutes from time. In the post match interview, Christy Pym joked that the move started 10 minutes from time! He wasn't far out, as Mansfield put together a move of 32 passes before Oates cut in from the left touchline and curled a superb shot from 20 yards into the bottom right corner of the net. What an incredible goal. 32 passes involving 10 of the 11 players (only Swan didn’t touch the ball).

After 89 minutes, great pressing by Oates on a defender to win a corner.

Only 3 minutes of additional time was added on. On 90+1 minutes, Will Vaulks fired wide from 25 yards. Then on 90+4 minutes, a Wednesday free kick from the left and Ihiekwe headed wide.

1-1 at full time and the game went straight to a penalty shoot-out. The Stags' record in penalty shoot-outs isn't great but this side is made of sterner stuff, full of bottle and quality.

On the toss of the referee's coin, the penalties were at the opposite end from the Stags fans.

The Stags went first:
Bowery: roof of the net. 1-0
Michael Smith: sent Pym the wrong way. 1-1
Maris: just inside the left post as the keeper went the right way. 2-1
Windass: straight down the middle as Pym dived. 2-2
Keillor-Dunn: buried into the right corner, as the keeper went the right way again. 3-2
Bannan: into the bottom right corner, as Pym went wrong way. 3-3
Swan: fires to the right and had his penalty saved, good save. 3-3
Will Vaulks: Pym then saved brilliantly, diving at full stretch to his right to save from Will Vaulks. 3-3
It was now sudden death.
Oates: scored, into the bottom left corner. 4-3
Lee Gregory: drew it level, into the roof of the net. 4-4
Flint: stepped up to boos from many home fans, and sent the keeper the wrong way, firing into the left corner of the net. 5-4
Liam Palmer: had to score for Wednesday, but Pym made another brilliant save, diving to his left to push it away. 5-4

The Stags were through.

Man of the match: Christy Pym

Here’s a running tally of various stats this season:

Goals (league and cup): Keillor-Dunn 5, Akins 3, Oates 3, Maris 2, Reed 1.

Assists (league and cup): Oates 4, Quinn 4, Keillor-Dunn 2, Bowery 1, Maris 1, Reed 1.
(notes on assists: in the case of a penalty, the player who earns the penalty gets an assist. In the case of a solo goal, such as Maris against Newport at home two seasons ago, nobody gets an assist. In the case of the scorer scoring from the rebound after a shot is saved or blocked, the player who had the shot saved gets an assist. In the case of an own goal, the player who caused the own goal gets an assist, for example McLaughlin against Newport away two seasons ago where his shot was deflected in for an own goal. In the case of a cross that is headed away before the goal is scored, such as Clarke’s goal at Doncaster last season, nobody gets an assist.)

Injuries: Kilgour (ruptured Achilles, return July), Hewitt (ACL, return April), McLaughlin (knee, return mid-late Oct), Johnson (hamstring, return end Sept), Lewis (calf, return end Sept), Boateng (groin, return end Sept), Gale (thigh, return around 5 Sept), O'Toole (ankle, “return later than Gale”), Cargill (felt hamstring, he is the closest to returning, for the Bradford game), Quinn (whack on knee against Stockport, missed Sheff W game, “got a 50:50 chance at best for Bradford game).

Yellow cards (league only, alphabetical order): Boateng 1, Cargill 1, Clarke 1, Keillor-Dunn 1, Kilgour 1, Lewis 1, Quinn 1, Reed 2, Swan 1.
Red cards (league and cup): Macdonald 1.
(note: red cards count across competitions apart from Papa John’s Trophy; yellow cards are competition specific)
(note: 5 yellow cards before the end of the 19th league game will result in a one match ban; 10 yellow cards before the end of the 37th league game will result in a two match ban; 15 yellow cards before the end of the 46th league game will result in a three match ban)


Report by: Martin Shaw at Hillsborough



Line Up:
(4-4-2, diamond in midfield)
Pym 10 Multiple superb saves in normal time, and then two saves in the shoot-out. The matchwinner.
Bowery 8.5 Very good going forward and defensively. Converted his penalty.
Flint 8.5 Dominant in the air against the side he helped get promoted last season. Converted his penalty.
Brunt 8 Looked so comfortable on the ball on his first start. Some good defending.
Macdonald 7.5 Very good game.
Reed 6.5 Did ok. Not his best game.
Maris 7 Some good defensive work including one good block. Buried his penalty.
Clarke 8.5 Excellent in midfield, tough in the tackle and getting up to speed now.
Keillor-Dunn 7 Buried his penalty. One great piece of skill.
Akins 6.5 Didn't have his best game up front.
Swan 5.5 Getting up to speed after missing pre-season but still has a way to go. Had his penalty saved.
Sub Line Up:
Oates (for Akins, 62 mins) - Really lively when he came on and gave the home defence problems. Scored a goal of the season contender.
Subs not used: Flinders, Louie Turner, George Cooper, Williams, McKeal Abdullah, Charlie Carter, Darien Wauchope, Jakub Kruszynski.
Opposition Line Up:
(3-4-3): Dawson; Iorfa, Ihiekwe, Famewo; Valentin (Palmer 80), Bannan, Bakinson (Vaulks 80), Paterson (Delgado 64); Windass, Musaba (Gregory 71), Fletcher (Smith 71). Subs not used: Vasquez, Bernard, James, Gassama.
Referee:
Sunny Gill 7 Mostly handled the game ok.


Season 23/24 Reports