{ match reports }
An independent supporters' website dedicated to Mansfield Town FC
Season 10/11 Stagsnet Match Report
FA Trophy Semi-Final 2nd leg
Luton Town  
1 - 1
 Mansfield Town (AET)
Owusu 46. Gnapka sent off 84, Lawless sent off 89.
 Briscoe 118
Attendance: 6133 (912 from Mansfield)
Date: 19 March 2011


Martin Shaw at Kenilworth Road

In a truly extraordinary day at Kenilworth Road, Mansfield Town reached Wembley for the first time in 24 years. The Stags led 1-0 from the first leg. A first half of fabulous entertainment ended goalless with David Grof pulling off one amazing save, Luton hitting the inside of the post, and the Stags also missing some good chances. Luton leveled the tie a minute into the second half when Lloyd Owusu scored with a fine shot. The rest of the half was quieter until Luton had Gnapka sent off for a second yellow on 84 and Lawless sent off for a straight red on 89 minutes. Both were clearly the correct decision. The game went into extra-time and the Stags, with a two-man advantage, were now favourites for the first time. Despite overwhelming possession, the Stags barely tested Luton keeper Kevin Pilkington, but two minutes away from a penalty shoot-out, the Stags were awarded a penalty when Briscoe's shot which was heading wide, was apparently handled by Luke Graham (video evidence awaited). Briscoe took the resulting penalty and blasted it down the middle, Pilkington saved, but in an enormous stroke of luck it came straight back out to Briscoe who rammed home from close range. Luton could not muster a response with their nine men, and the Stags had done it. Outstanding displays from the entire defence and goalkeeper Grof were mainly to thank for the victory. The Stags are going to Wembley!

Newton fired wide for Luton in the first minute. On 8 minutes, Owusu was through but tackled by Sandwith. On 10 minutes, Silk crossed in, Connor went down under a challenge, but nothing was given. Seconds later, Briscoe cut in and curled a shot goalwards but it was an easy save for Pilkington.

On 12 minutes, Grof made a save that was out of this world. Lawless sent in a free kick from the left, George Pilkington got a header in to change the direction of the ball and Groff somehow changed direction to keep it out. On 15 minutes, Grof was out quickly to claim the ball in front of Barnes-Homer.

At this stage, it was already completely clear that Luton were really up for this game and any hope that they might not be taking it seriously was straight out of the window.

On 19 minutes, Barnes-Homer crossed and a swing and a miss from Owusu in the box. A great catch by Grof on 20 minutes

Report by: Martin Shaw at Kenilworth Road

Line Up:
Grof 8 Fabulous save in the first half. Handling was decent.
Silk 8 Great game, really looking back at his best now.
Naylor 10 The best defensive display from a Stags defender since ... well I can't actually remember.
Sandwith 8 Very good performance. Won some great headers. Possibly at fault for the Luton goal.
Spence 8 Very good game at left back, and some good attacking too.
Cain 6 Injured after 23 minutes.
Thompson 6 One outstanding challenge, but didn't get a grip of the midfield.
Nix 6 Quiet game and distribution wasn't great.
Briscoe 6 Very lucky to get a second chance from the penalty, or he could have been the villain of the piece. Did create some danger but didn't make enough use of lots of space against 9 men.
Mitchley 4 Really poor game, after such a good first leg. Nothing went right for him today.
Connor 5 His worst game for ages.
Sub Line Up:
Smith (for Cain, 23) 5 Wasted too much good possession. But did put in some good corners.
Istead (for Nix, 90+1) 6 Did ok.
Subs not used: Marriott, Foster, Stonehouse.
Opposition Line Up:
K.Pilkington, Graham, Kroca, G.Pilkington, Howells, Gnapka, Keane, Lawless, Newton (Walker 69), Barnes-Homer (Morgan-Smith 112), Owusu (Crow 77). Subs not used: Tyler, Poku.
Graham Scott (Oxfordshire) 9 Stayed strong in spite of the disgraceful home fans. Was quite right with the 2 sendings off. Will reserve judgement on the penalty until seen video evidence.

Season 10/11 Reports