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Season 08/09 Stagsnet Match Report
Blue Square Premier
Mansfield Town  
2 - 0
 Ebbsfleet United
Briscoe 22, Duffy 47.
Attendance: 1630 (50 from Ebbsfleet)
Date: 7 April 2009


Martin Shaw at Field Mill

Mansfield Town were comfortable 2-0 winners over Ebbsfleet United at Field Mill on Tuesday night. Goals from man of the match Louis Briscoe, his first for the club, and Rob Duffy, his seventh of the season, were enough to secure the three points. Meanwhile the defence was rarely tested and Alan Marriott had little to do to earn another home clean sheet, the seventh in 8 games under David Holdsworth. There were some encouraging performances for the Stags with debutant Oliver Hotchkiss catching the eye in midfield, while Briscoe showed why manager Holdsworth rates him so highly with a terrific display.

Highlights from the Stagsworld audio commentary with Martin Shaw and David Jackson, here

Oliver Hotchkiss came in for his Stags debut, Daryl Clare started his first match. Woodhouse was the new captain as D’Laryea was dropped. Ebbsfleet included Sole, on loan from Woking, who had already scored at Field Mill this season: the winner for Woking in their 1-0 win. The Stags came into the game on the back of two terrible away performances, while Ebbsfleet had won three on the trot - all 1-0.

The game was entertaining from the start. On 9 minutes, Hotchkiss played a great ball forward but Clare wasn’t able to control it. On 13 minutes, Stacey Long’s corner was headed over by Smith. On 16 minutes Briscoe played a lovely little ball forward for Clare, but as the keeper Cronin came out, Clare clipped his shot wide. Then Duffy headed over on 19 minutes.

But the Stags were in front on 22 minutes. Clare’s clever ball forward was perfect for Briscoe to run onto, and in acres of space and with just the keeper to beat, Briscoe fired powerfully low through the keeper’s legs and into the middle of the net from 18 yards.

There was amusement as Marriott’s kick landed on top of a TV aerial on Bishop Street.

On 27 minutes, Sole fired well over the bar. Then on 31, Briscoe went on a good run, cutting inside and firing wide with his left foot as the keeper watched it all the way. Then at the other end, Gash’s shot from 20 yards was an easy height for Marriott.

On 33 minutes, a great corner from Williams was headed over by Briscoe. Then Hotchkiss’s ball found Briscoe, who cut the ball back to Clare who fired over the bar from 16 yards.

Then came the miss of the season for the Stags on 42 minutes. Briscoe chased down left back Sacha Opinel, who passed back to keeper Cronin. Cronin, between the goal and the corner flag, completely miskicked his clearance straight to Briscoe 22 yards out and to the right of centre. Briscoe had an empty net to aim at, composed himself and fired 3 yards wide of the left post. Fans gasped in the West Stand. A bad miss.

A minute later, Gash headed well wide from Long’s cross.

An entertaining first half, and it was great to see the Stags back on song.

Half time 1-0

The Stags were two ahead on 47 minutes. Williams played a great ball from the left touchline, fully 35 yards from the byeline, diagonally to the far post where Duffy rose to plant a super header in off the left post.

On 50 minutes, a good move almost ended in a third goal. Clare’s pass picked out Briscoe, whose cross was back to Clare, who powered past a defender and his shot was blocked by the keeper from a tight angle. From the corner, Duffy’s header was blocked on the line.

On 64 minutes, a great ball over the top by the impressive Hotchkiss, and Briscoe so nearly controlled the ball in the box. Ebbsfleet sub Purcell shot onto the roof of the net at the other end. Then Marriott saved from Ricky Shakes’s cross from the left. On 67, Williams' shot was blocked by Cronin. Five minutes later, Briscoe’s great ball was just missed by Williams.

On 72 minutes, a great flick on by Duffy and Clare couldn’t quite get on the end of it. At the other end, a great tackle by Woodhouse after a good turn by Gash.

O’Connor replaced Clare on 81 minutes, as Clare received a good ovation. Then Ebbsfleet sub Slatter shot straight at Marriott from just outside the box. There was an optical illusion a minute later as O’Connor’s lob seemed to be headed in, but actually it wasn’t!

Briscoe went off to a tremendous ovation on 89 minutes.

No sign of nerves from the Stags in the closing minutes and a very comfortable win. Great stuff. More of the same against barrow on Saturday please. Come on Mansfield.

Man of the match: Louis Briscoe

Report by: Martin Shaw at Field Mill

Line Up:
Marriott 7 Solid, with a few good saves.
Havern 7 Did well at right back. Displayed a long throw on a couple of occasions.
Moses 6 Did ok. Solid.
Garner 7 Good game.
Woodhouse 8 Great game at left back. The new captain for the moment.
Briscoe 8 Outstanding on the right wing. Scored his first goal and should have had another.
Somner 7 Some fine tackling. Got control of the middle.
Hotchkiss 8 Very good debut. Fine passing. Gave the ball away a couple of times in the first half.
Williams 8 Some great crosses throughout the match.
Duffy 7 Great goal. Linked well with Clare.
Clare 7 Impressive full debut. Close to scoring several times.
Sub Line Up:
O'Connor (for Clare, 81) -
Arnold (for Briscoe, 89) -
Subs Not Used: White, O'Hare, MacKenzie.
Opposition Line Up:
Cronin, Opinel (Purcell 60), Smith (Stevens 86), Charles, Crooks, West, Long, Ricketts, Sole (Slatter 72), Gash, Shakes. Subs Not Used: Mott, Henry.
R Merchant (Staffordshire) 7 Hardly noticed him so must have had a good game.

Season 08/09 Reports