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Season 05/06 Stagsnet Match Report
Mansfield Town  
1 - 2
 Huddersfield Town
Brown 80
 Booth 70, Mendes 90+1
Attendance: 1,562 (141 from Huddersfield)
Date: 22 Jul 05

The Stags made two changes from the side which started the match against Derby last weekend. Stephen Dawson picked up a knock in training and was replaced by Fraser McLachlan whilst Kevin Pressman made his first Stags appearance in place of Jason White. Huddersfield had former Stags striker Junior Mendes on the bench.

The opening exchanges were fairly even though the visitors had two penalty appeals turned down, the first looked nothing but the second looked a better shout, the ball hitting Buxton clearly on the hand with his arm raised. However, it was a case of third time lucky and it was the least convincing of the appeals (in fact, there was no appeal from either fans or players) as the referee gave the Terriers the chance to go ahead. However, Pressman made himself popular with the home support as he turned away the spot kick. The Stags best efforts came through the lively Birchall and Tipton, the latter forced the Huddersfield keeper into a full length save whilst Barker hit into the side-netting after being found by a splendid pass from Birchall. At the other end Pressman saved well when a Brandon shot was deflected by Day towards the keepers right corner but he managed to palm the ball away.

Half Time 0-0

The opening 20 minutes or so of the second half were fairly quiet with little to choose between the sides, Carlton Palmer was replaced by Giles Coke, who impressed immediately. However, the Stags fell behind to a typical Andy Booth goal, heading home an excellent left wing cross. This signalled several Stags substitutions and one of those sub's, Adam Rundle, almost brought the Stags level with a terrific left foot striker which hit the inside of the post. However, the Stags were not to be denied an equaliser on 80 minutes when Brown latched onto a through ball, rounded the keeper and slid the ball home. As the Stags looked for a winner, they were hit by an injury time goal, it had to be the former Stag who netted, and Mendes duly obliged, sliding home a low cross from the left.

All in all the Stags did well and signs are that this virtually entirely new team is starting to gel. My concerns are based on the formation. Against Derby and again tonight the excellent Birchall and Tipton were playing too deep, although billed as a 4-3-3, it was often a 4-5-1 and surely we want these two players in more advanced positions? However, it was another encouraging display overall and Palmer looks like he has assembled an excellent squad, with players the calibre of Brown, Coke and Rundle on the bench, all three of whom would have walked into the side of 12 months ago. Man of the match is pretty easy tonight, Richie Barker lead the line superbly, his hold-up play and bringing others into the game was immaculate - he needs wrapping up in cotton wool, for if he gets injured, he is one player we cannot replace.

Man of the Match: Richie Barker

Report by: Rob Wheldon

Line Up:
Pressman 7 Two fine saves, the odd mix-up but nothing serious
Peers 7 Battled hard and got forward well
Talbot 7 Did well at left back
Buxton 6 Given a tough evening by Booth
Day 6 Like Buxton, was troubled by the Huddersfield strikers
Palmer 7 Rarely wasted possession
Uhlenbeek 6 Fairly quiet game
McLachlan 7 Quiet first half but had a good second half
Birchall 8 Looks a very exciting prospect
Barker 9 Priceless to the side, excellent hold-up play and strength on the ball
Tipton 8 Some terrific touches, occasionally played a little too deep
Sub Line Up:
Coke (for Palmer, 61) 8 Really making a case for a 1st team place
Jelleyman (for Talbot, 73) 6 Got forward well but occasionally out of position
Brown (for Tipton, 70) 7 Quick and dangerous, took his goal very well
Rundle (for Birchall, 73) 7 One fine effort
Lloyd (for Uhlenbeek, 73) 6 Not involved a great deal
Baptiste (for Peers, 86) 6 Replaced Peers at right back near the end
Opposition Line Up:
Paul Rachubka, Andy Holdsworth, Tom Clarke, Tony Carss (Danny Adams 70), Martin McIntosh, David Mirfin, Chris Brandon, Andy Booth (Junior Mendes 78), Pawel Abbott (Gary Taylor-Fletcher 64), Jon Worthington (Danny Schofield 70), Mark Hudson (Michael Collins 64). Not used: Phil Senior
K.Friend - Very, very poor

Season 05/06 Reports