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Season 0910 Stagsnet Match Report
Blue Square Premier
0 - 5
 Mansfield Town
 Garner 38, Briscoe 56, Sturrock 63, Burgess 69, Speight 75
Attendance: 662 (approx 150 from Mansfield)
Date: 20 March 2010


Martin Shaw at the Glassworld Stadium

Mansfield Town produced their best performance of the season to romp to a 5-0 win at Histon on Saturday afternoon. It was the Stags biggest away league win since 8-3 at Worksop on 02Sept1929. This was the Stags best performance of the season, and a far cry from the disappointing displays against Tamworth and York at home. The Stags now need 7 wins from the final 8 games in my opinion to reach the play-offs. On today’s form, anything is possible.

On 4 minutes, Southam tried his luck with a shot from 28 yards and hit it crisply, but it was over the bar. Two minutes later, at the other end, Challinor shot from 25 yards, but it was well wide. On 9 minutes, Silk’s free kick from the halfway line was headed over by Garner. On 10 minutes Tann headed wide from Gwillam’s free kick. The Stags had a glorious chance to take the lead on 11 minutes. Keeper Knight’s clearance was knocked back towards his own goal by a Histon player, where Kyle Perry was in acres of space having closed the keeper down. Perry turned with the ball and charged towards goal, heading slightly to the left, and possibly from a wider angle than was necessary, he shot across goal. Knight got a crucial touch to send the ball wide of the far post. The referee bizarrely awarded a goalkick. Nevertheless a real gift wasted by Perry. On 23 minutes, Briscoe got down the right and crossed for Sturrock who was unmarked but a defender got it out for a corner.

On 29 minutes, good play by Garner and Burgess down the left, Briscoe cut inside and teed up Mills who fired over. The Stags were really taking charge now. Confidence was visibly rising in the players.

Great defending by Garner two minutes later. A mistake by Challinor, and Histon got the ball out to Charlie Sheringham, son of Teddy, out on the right. He cut inside Brough, before firing a left footed shot goalwards. Garner slid in to make a great block.

On 37 minutes, a defence-splitting ball by Burgess fed Challinor who made progress to the edge of he area, before his ball towards Sturrock was mis-placed and Histon cleared the ball for a throw-in. Nicholas’s throw-in from midway inside the half was launched into the box, it was headed on by a Histon defender, to Briscoe who chested the ball down and as Briscoe went for the knock down himself, Garner took it off his boot and blasted the ball into the roof of the net. A great finish by Garner, that reminded me of his goal against Altrincham last season. Briscoe received treatment having been caught by Garner’s boot.

The Stags should have made it 2-0 on 55 minutes. Sturrock controlled the ball well and great play as he turned inside a couple of Histon players in the middle of the park, before finding Perry who slid the ball inside to Briscoe, but Briscoe’s shot from the edge of the box was too weak and straight at the keeper.

A great half for the Stags. Back to playing football superbly on the deck and so refreshing to watch.

Half time 0-1

Histon had a chance a minute into the second half. Pugh, who I had seen score a hat-trick for Welling United at Woking in Blue Square South just a month ago, turned and shot in the box, but it was at Marriott. A minute later, Burgess’s corner was headed back by Perry, and Garner got in a header at goal, but it was too soft and easy for the keeper. On 53 minutes, Oyebanjo got past Burgess on the halfway line, and ran goalwards, unchallenged, before shooting from 20 yards. Marriott got down low to save it. A great run by Burgess on 55 minutes, but in the end he took on too many players and the chance was gone. On 56 minutes, Sturrock did well to chip the ball inside from the right to Briscoe whose cross was put behind for a corner.

From the corner, taken by Burgess, Nicholas headed it down at the far post, Perry had a shot at goal which was blocked and it rebounded kindly to Briscoe who fired home from a tight angle from 4 yards. 2-0.

On 61 minutes, Gwillam’s left-footed free kick from the right was just past the left post, when any sort of touch would have taken it in.

It was 3-0 on 63 minutes in bizarre circumstances. A Histon backpass was blasted at keeper Knight, who tried to trap the ball on this chest and he has tried to clear the loose ball, Sturrock charged it down, and had the easiest of tasks to run the ball into the empty net. An absolute gift.

Somner replaced Mills on 66. A comical moment a minute later as manager Holdsworth volleyed the ball back into play after Marriott’s clearance went straight into touch.

It was 4-0 on 69 minutes. Good interplay by the Stags, and Silk played the ball down the right to Briscoe who showed great pace to get past his defender, then his cross was across the face of goal, and retrieved by Burgess out on the left. Burgess cut inside a defender before firing right-footed under the keeper into the net from a tight angle.

Speight entered the action, and on 75 minutes he made it 5-0. Burgess’s superb cross from the left, was headed back across the box by Perry, and Speight acrobatically sent a finish into the right corner of the net. The finish lacked power but the accuracy was enough to beat the keeper.

It should have been 6-0 on 85 minutes. Sturrock robbed Southam in the centre-circle, fed the ball to Perry, who played it back to Sturrock. Sturrock’s shot from the edge of the box was well saved by Knight low to his right. Moments later, Speight sent a clever left footed shot onto the roof of the net. Shaw replaced the impressive Perry on 88 minutes. In stoppage time, Burgess’s cross from the left seemed destined for Shaw to head home at the far post, but a defender was able to clear.

So a truly emphatic win for the Stags. Impressive in all areas, the Stags played some beautiful football on the deck. A performance to give so much hope for the future, whether or not we can make the play-offs this season.

Man of the Match: Blair Sturrock

Report by: Martin Shaw at the Glassworld Stadium

Line Up:
Marriott 6 Very quiet afternoon. Almost nothing to do.
Silk 7 Decent game, with some good attacking down the right.
Garner 8 Great comeback. Super goal.
Brough 7 Very solid at the back.
Nicholas 7 Good game.
Briscoe 8 Some great breaks down the right. Terrorised the left back.
Challinor 8 Really good in the centre.
Mills 8 Great game, pushing forward with purpose.
Burgess 8 Some great crosses, and a really composed finish for his goal.
Sturrock 9 Simply outstanding. Oozed class. Another 8 performances like this and we have a chance.
Perry 8 Almost faultless performance, apart from a bad miss in the first half. Confidence-boosting display.
Sub Line Up:
Somner (for Mills, 67) -
Speight (for Briscoe, 72) - So lively. Scored a good goal, nearly got another, and chased all over the pitch.
Shaw (for Perry, 89) -
Subs Not Used: Collett, Nix.
Opposition Line Up:
Knight, Oyebanjo (Stewart 70), Tann, Bygrave, Gwillim, Smith, Southam, Knight-Percival, Sparkes (York 70), Pugh (Tidswell 70), Sheringham. Subs Not Used: Key, Okay.
Stephen Ross (Lincolnshire) 8 Handled the game well though little controversy.

Season 0910 Reports