{ match reports }
An independent supporters' website dedicated to Mansfield Town FC
Season 07/08 Stagsnet Match Report
Coca-Cola League 2
Mansfield Town  
5 - 0
 Macclesfield Town
Brown 8, 19, 22, Arnold 21, M.Boulding 54.
Attendance: 2853 (272 from Macclesfield)
Date: 3 November 2007

The Stags made it four games unbeaten and in the process humiliated Macclesfield Town at Field Mill this afternoon. Within 22 exhilarating minutes the match was over, the Stags four up and looking like scoring every time they poured forwards. In the thick of the action was Simon Brown, who twice pounced from close range and then lobbed the keeper for a 22 minute hat-trick, the quickest from the start of a match in the clubs history. Nathan Arnold finished the best goal of the game just before Brown completed his hat-trick and Michael Boulding added a fifth on 54 minutes. There was also a welcome return for Jon D'Laryea who came on as a second half substitute and came through the last half hour.

The Stags made one enforced change from last weeks draw at Shrewsbury, the suspended John Mullins was replaced by Gareth Jelleyman, playing in an unfamiliar right back role. Long term injury absentee Jon D'Laryea was joined on the bench by Jon McAliskey, also returning from injury. The Silkmen included three former Stags, Luke Dimech (who was to have a torrid afternoon), Adam Murray and Martin Gritton.

It was a fairly slow start to the game, the only moment really worthy of note was a very early booking for Jelleyman, who was quite late though made little contact with Thomas, probably Macc's most dangerous player. On eight minutes, and almost out of the blue, the Stags took the lead. Boulding should have scored from close range but his shot was well saved by Lee, luckily for the home side the ball rebounded back to Brown who's header hit the ground and bounced over the scrambling Macc keeper and into the back of the net. It was vital for the Stags confidence to get the first goal, but Macc looked a real threat going forwards and Muggleton was forced into a fine save low to his right after a good run from the effervescent Thomas. Indeed it was an entertaining start to the game, with the visitors certainly proving a threat going forwards but looking like conceding every time the Stags attacked. The next goal was crucial, but in an incredible three minute spell, the game was all but over as the Stags scored three times. First on 19 minutes a free kick from Bell after a foul on Dawson was deflected goalwards, Lee made a decent save but the ball fell to Brown who fired home. Two minutes later Arnold latched on to a perfect cross field pass from Hamshaw and slid the ball past Lee and then just a minute later the Macc defence went missing, Brown raced through and perfectly lobbed the advancing Lee. It was a breathtaking spell, great attacking football from the Stags, absolutely dire defending from Macc. The rest of the half passed over quite quietly, though to their credit Macc did create a few half chances, but Muggleton was on hand to keep the Stags goal in tact. At the other end Boulding was twice victim to very marginal offside decisions, when racing clear of Macc's shell-shocked defence. Just before half time Macc could have pulled one back, but an outstanding last ditch challenge from the excellent Martin kept the Stags four goal lead in tact going in to half time and well deserved standing ovation.

Half Time: 4-0

Boulding was first to threaten to extend the Stags lead, he cut in well from the right but his shot was tame and Lee saved easily. However, the Stags and League Two's top scorer wasn't to be denied his goal as he made it 5-0 on 54 minutes. Arnold threaded a great ball to Boulding who slid the ball between Lee's legs and into the net. D'Laryea instantly replaced Jelleyman, the young midfielder, out for 8 months, received a very warm welcome from the home faithful. Dimech was put out of his misery on the half hour as he was subbed. There were still chances at either end, Boulding had a header well saved by Lee and at the other end Muggleton made a fine low save to deny Macc a consolation. McAliskey replaced Boulding and got straight into the action from a Stags free kick, though the whistle had already blown for a foul by the time the ball reached him at the far post. Indeed, McAliskey looked very sharp and his touch was excellent throughout his short spell on the pitch. Brown was replaced with 5 minutes to go, a standing ovation for the Stags hat-trick hero. There was still time for Macc to create another chance to grab that consolation, but again the excellent Muggleton kept his goal in tact after a powerful effort from Gritton.

So 5-0 probably flatters the Stags a little, but Macc's defending was truly woeful and the game was effectively over after the spell of three goals in three minutes. That period apart, it was a fairly even affair and Macc certainly looked good going forward, with Muggleton probably as busy as Lee. There were some excellent performances from Stags players, Brown took his chances well and overall had a fine game, Lee Bell again showed what a good footballer he is and Dawson ran from start to finish and dominated midfield. However, although many would argue that Simon Brown's hat-trick was enough to earn him Man of the Match, my own choice is Dan Martin. Criticised earlier on in the season for his fitness levels, he is now showing what a good player he is, he certainly had a great game today.

Man of the Match: Dan Martin

Report by: Rob Wheldon

Line Up:
Muggleton 8 A few excellent saves, faultless performance
Jelleyman 6 Early booking gave him a problem and looked uncomfortable at right back
Baptiste 7 Battled hard at the back, at times under a bit of pressure
Buxton 7 Like Baptiste, had a tough afternoon but the clean sheet says it all
Martin 9 Composed on the ball, some great challenges - all round excellent game
Hamshaw 8 Creative in the first half, quieter in the second
Bell 9 Excellent in the centre of midfield, equally excellent at right back
Dawson 8 Tireless in midfield, won just about every 50-50
Arnold 7 Looked a threat on the left, a little on the periphery 2nd half
M.Boulding 8 A few missed chances but took his goal well, looks sharp
Brown 9 A well taken hat-trick, in the right place at the right time
Sub Line Up:
D'Laryea (for Jelleyman, 56) 7 Great to see him back, looked good too
McAliskey (for M.Boulding, 74) 8 Had an excellent last 15 minutes or so
Holmes (for Brown, 83) 6 Didn't really have time to make an impact
Subs not used: White, McAllister.
Opposition Line Up:
Lee, McIntyre, Dimech (McNulty 59), Edghill, Regan, Thomas (Evans 60), Murray, Tolley, Levi Reid (Wiles 46), Green, Gritton. Subs Not Used: Brain, Hadfield.
Iain Williamson 6 A few poor decisions, definitely not a homer, but OK overall

Season 07/08 Reports