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Season 08/09 Stagsnet Match Report
Blue Square Premier
2 - 2
 Mansfield Town
Miles 43, Anderson 67.
 Duffy 41, 79.
Attendance: 2096 (220 from Mansfield)
Date: 18 April 2009

Martin Shaw, Svante Bernhard and Andy Saunders at Kingfield


Mansfield Town‘s final away game of the season was an exciting affair. After recent dreadful performances at Northwich, Wrexham and Histon, the travelling Stags fans deserved a better effort and certainly got it at Kingfield in a ding-dong second half plus the final few minutes of the first half. Rob Duffy did his chances of earning a contract for next season a power of good with a fabulous overhead kick to give the Stags the lead, and then scored another to rescue a point with 11 minutes to go. In between, Woking scored two soft goals, with Stags keeper Jason White making a horrible mistake for the second. Both teams missed good chances in stoppage time to win it, Nathan Arnold somehow firing over a sitter when it seemed easier to score.

David Holdsworth made 4 changes from the side that started at Northwich: Silk for Havern at right back, Curtis Shaw for Somner in central midfield, Arnold for O’Connor, and Duffy for Clare who was rested. Briscoe started up front alongside Duffy. Woking were desperate for a win - indeed only two wins from their final two games would give them a chance of survival

Duffy was soon in the action with a good header away in defence on 4 minutes. White made a good save on 12 minutes as Domoraud made space in the box and shot left footed and low but White was quick to get down. Briscoe seemed to be through on 18 minutes but was stopped by the home defence and was injured in the process. He soon had to go off, and may miss the final two games of the season. O’Connor came on. Woking’s had a half-chance on 23 minutes as Vernazza was through, wide on the right, but skewed his shot well wide.

The closest chance came on 24 minutes. Duffy flicked on for O’Connor who moved down the left and fired a brilliant left footed shot against the angle of bar and post. Straight to the other end and White came out to punch away a cross but miscued and Stags were able to clear. Curtis Shaw was having a nervy start, and gave the ball away on a few occasions, and giving away soft free kicks and guilty of ball watching.

On 35 minutes, Woking were awarded a debatable free kick just inside the Mansfield half. Bozanic curled it forward , and Domoraud flicked it on and the ball cannoned off the Mansfield post. A lucky escape. On 37 minutes, two mistakes by Jason White: first he was out of position as Marum could have chipped him but fired off the keeper, then White was again out of position from the resulting corner.

The game really burst into life on 41 minutes. Williams corner to the far post was knocked back in by O’Connor and Duffy sent a spectacular overhead kick into the net from 8 yards to send the travelling fans wild. Possibly the best goal of the season.

But the lead lasted just two minutes. A corner from the right was headed down and Colin Miles, almost on the goalline, backheeled pasted White.

Two minutes into stoppage time, a great Duffy flick-on nearly put O’Connor through but he just lost out.

Half time 1-1

O’Hare replaced Woodhouse at the start of the second half, and slotted in at left back. It was another chance to show he isn’t a left back after his display at Histon.

On 47 minutes, Hotchkiss was high over the bar following a corner. Then on 51, a good ball in from Arnold to O’Connor, but a brilliant tackle from defender Lorraine. Then Vernazza had a shot blocked. On 59 minutes, Williams to Duffy who flicked back to O’Connor who volleyed just wide of the right post.

The Stags were denied a blatant penalty on 62 minutes. From a Williams corner, Paul Lorraine rose with his arm high in the air and clearly handballed. It was a clearcut penalty, as acknowledged by the home media, but referee Bennett waved away appeals. Astonishing.

On 67 minutes, it was 2-1 for Woking. Ledgister’s low ball in from the right was horribly missed by White and left back Joe Anderson came in at the far post and side footed into an empty net.

On 77 minutes, Williams was out wide and his right footed cross was just too high for Duffy who could only head over.

But it was 2-2 on 79 minutes. A great ball in from the left by Hotchkiss was perfect for Duffy at the far post to head back across the keeper and looped into the net.

It was an open game now as Woking desperately pushed for a winner as a draw was no good for them, and this left space at the other end as the Stags also wanted to win the game. Gardner replaced Duffy on 90, with Arnold joining O’Connor up front, and Gardner going into right midfield.

Two minutes into stoppage time, Williams cut inside from the left and fired just wide with his right foot. It was so nearly a carbon copy of his belter last week against Barrow. A minute later, a sitter missed by the Stags. Williams cross was headed back by Gardner and Arnold somehow blazed over from a yard. Surely it was easier to score. The fourth official had announced 5 minutes of stoppage time, but after 7 minutes Woking had a glorious chance to win it themselves, as Ledgister blazed over at the far post from 10 yards.

So a draw for Woking will almost certainly see them relegated for the first time in 17 years. Woking’s chairman David Taylor has spend most of the season banging on about how his side should be playing in a regionalised league. Thanks to Duffy’s splendid double, Taylor should now get his wish in Blue Square South. Bye bye Woking! Come on Mansfield!

Man of the match: Rob Duffy

Report by: Martin Shaw, Svante Bernhard and Andy Saunders at Kingfield

Line Up:
White 5 Made two good saves in first half, but overall poor. Bad mistake for second goal.
Silk 6 Decent return from injury.
Moses 5 Didn’t win enough headers.
Garner 6 Got stuck in.
Woodhouse 6 Subbed at half time.
Arnold 6 Missed a sitter at the end. Did at least get stuck in.
Shaw 6 Full debut. Looked lost in first half. Much improved in second half.
Hotchkiss 6 Played well in second half, good cross for second goal.
Williams 7 Very good second half.
Duffy 9 Terrific game. One outstanding goal and one good goal. Also defended well from corners.
Briscoe - Injured after 20 minutes.
Sub Line Up:
O'Connor (for Briscoe, 20) 7 Excellent effort against the angle. Did well.
O’Hare (for Woodhouse, 46) 5 Caught out of position several times, not a natural left back.
Gardner (for Duffy, 90) -
Subs Not Used: Naylor, D'Laryea.
Opposition Line Up:
Knowles, Konan, Lorraine, Miles, Anderson, Ledgister, Quamina, Vernazza (Pattison 74), Bozanic (Lambu 75), Marum (Hutchinson 86), Domoraud. Subs Not Used: Moone, Sintim.
A Bennett (Devon) 7 Handled the game, but missed a stonewall penalty for the Stags.

Season 08/09 Reports