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Season 07/08 Stagsnet Match Report
Coca-Cola League 2
1 - 1
 Mansfield Town
Hatch 71. Muggleton saved pen 77.
 Brown 47
Attendance: 2,041 (145 from Mansfield)
Date: 13 October 2007

Martin Shaw at Underhill


Mansfield ended the sequence of 6 successive league defeats at Barnet this lunchtime, with a 1-1 draw. Barnet themselves had won 4 on the trot, but you wouldn't have thought it as the Stags tore into the home side for 71 minutes and should have been several goals ahead, before Barnet equalised. For the final 19 minutes however the Stags were hanging on as Barnet had a penalty saved and hit the post. Fantastic entertainment but a real feeling that the Stags should have claimed all three points.

The Stags should have been given a penalty on 21 minutes. Brown was through on the left and was brought down near the byeline. The defender certainly didn't get the ball and the ball did not change direction, but somehow the referee decided to give a corner. It was as outrageous a decision as the Boulding incident against MK Dons when no penalty was given. The Stags missed a hatful of chances during a dominant first half performance. Boulding missed a one-on-one, Mullins missed with a header from one yard when it seemed easier to score, Bell had a fine free kick tipped over by the keeper, and Brown blazed a sitter over the bar.

But right at the start of second half, Boulding did well to flick on a header 35 yards out, and Brown ran onto the ball, headed slightly to the left of centre and slid a soft shot just inside the right post, with keeper Harrison just geteting a finger to it. The relief was palpable as Stags players celebrated in fine style with some kind of air guitar thing down by the far corner flag.

There was a near riot on 55 minutes. Dan Martin went down with an injury. Muggleton quite rightly booted the ball into touch. I can only presume that Barnet thought Martin was play acting, because Barnet took the throw in and crossed the ball into the middle where Hatch blazed over the bar. Mansfield players were incensed, about 15 players got involved in pushing and shoving, and Dawson was eventually booked. Disgraceful stuff from Barnet and I would guess their manager Paul Fairclough was hugely embarrassed by the whole incident. Martin limped off within seconds to be replaced by 17 year Ryan Goward who slotted in at left back.

More chances went begging from Boulding and Mullins, before on 68 minutes another shout for a Stags penalty was waved away. Brown crossed from the right and it struck the arm of a Barnet defender who had his arm raised.

But on 71 minutes Barnet equalised with a rare chance. Birchall crossed low from the left into the path of substitute Liam Hatch who controlled the ball before firing low under Muggleton from just inside the box.

On 77 minutes, more controversy as a penalty was awarded against Boulding. The ball dropped from the air and it seemed that Boulding didn't know where the ball was as it landed on his outstretched arm. Puncheon's spot kick was superbly saved by Muggleton who pushed the ball onto the angle of bar and post and away to safety.

Right on 90 minutes there was drama as a Barnet shot from the edge of the box looked easy for Muggleton until it deflected off a Stags player and seemed to be heading for the left corner of the net but amazingly bounced off the inside of the post and was cleared away. It would have been a fluke but the Stags were lucky in not conceding a last minute winner. Finally in the fourth minute of stoppage time, Muggleton pulled off a fine diving save to preserve the point.

Man of the match: Arnold

Report by: Martin Shaw at Underhill

Line Up:
Muggleton 8 Superb penalty save and then a diving save in stoppage time, after a quiet first 70 minutes.
Mullins 7 Defended well and looked potent going forward.
Baptiste 7 Good performance
Buxton 7 Commanding performance from the skipper.
Martin 7 Did well at left back. Picked up an injury.
Hamshaw 7 Showed more bite in his tackles than normal. Much more battling than recent displays.
Bell 8 Superb performance in midfield, winning tackles and controlling play.
Dawson 8 Great game, driving team forward.
Arnold 8 Caused Barnet problems on the left with his pace.
M.Boulding 7 Played well but missing too many chances.
Brown 7 Took his goal well.
Sub Line Up:
Goward (for Martin, 56) 7 Did well, though a slip with his first ever touch in professional football nearly gifted a goal.
Sleath (for Arnold, 82) 7 Looked composed.
Subs Not Used: Holmes, White.
Opposition Line Up:
Harrison, Devera (Hendon 69), Burton, O'Cearuill, Nicolau, Carew, Bishop, Porter (Thomas 70), Puncheon, Birchall, Norville (Hatch 46). Subs Not Used: Beckwith, Seanla.
Karl Evans 5 As in the MK Dons game, the failure to award a Stags penalty was key to the game.

Season 07/08 Reports