{ the news }
An independent supporters' website dedicated to Mansfield Town FC
Archived News from May 2011

6th May 2011 12:38

Wembley, here we come !

There on Saturday evening, the stage is set for the FA Trophy final between the Stags and Darlington. And whatever the outcome, it will be the first FA Trophy final victory for either side.

For the Stags, it will be their first Wembley appearance since lifting the Freight Rover Trophy after penalizing Bristol City at Wembley in May 1987.

And for the Quakers, it will be their first Wembley cup final appearance, apart from 2 playoff finals at Wembley in 1996 and 2000.

On the way to the final, the Stags routed Worksop 5-0 away in the first round, then being effective in front goal at home to Newport County winning 4-2 in the second round. But in the two rounds before the semi-finals, replays were needed. First, after a 1-1 home draw against Blue Square North high-fliers and near-neighbours Alfreton, winning the away replay 2-1 after being 1-0 down at the interval, secondly conceding in the final minute to a 2-2 draw at the FA Cup 2007-08 history makers Chasetown in front of a full house there, eventually winning the replay 3-1. Note that Chasetown brought more fans to Field Mill on a Tuesday night than Luton brought a few days later when the Stags won the home fixture thanks to a Danny Mitchley goal. At Luton, Louis Briscoe was the Stags hero by slamming in a penalty rebound two minutes from the end of extra-time sending
the Stags to Wembley.

Also note that Alfreton and Chasetown brought the highest away followings to Field Mill during the current campaign. Compare that to the fact that almost half of the visiting sides to Field Mill BSP games brought less than 100 away fans! Darlington were not one of those as the Quakers brought 169 last October.

Darlington have paved their way to Wembley by beating current BSP sides, a former one and a successor to a former ever-present BSP side (up to 2004).

In the first round, the Quakers kayoed Tamworth 4-2 at home, then beat Bath City 4-1 at headquarters. In the third round, AFC Telford (successor of the Telford side which were non-league upper house instant members from 1979 to 2004) at their place to a 3-0 scoreline. In the quarter-finals, the Quakers had to work very hard to dispose of Salisbury, a BSP side in 2009-109 before being demoted, 2-1 at home. A local derby against Gateshead followed in the semifinals. At Darlington, a 0-2 ht deficit was overturned into a 3-2 victory in the first leg, and in the second leg, the sides drew 1-1 at Gateshead, which was enough to send the Quakers to Wembley.

The sides have clashed on numerous occasions in league fixtures over the years since 1932. Both league games in the just finished BSP campaign ended in draws, 1-1 at Field Mill on October 16, 2010, and on January 25, 2011, the sides played out a goal-less draw, which was the Stags' first-ever away BSP one.

The Stags and the Quakers have faced each other in a few cup games before. Here are the stats:

Cup games:

1978-79 0-1 1978-08-12 League Cup 1st round at Field Mill
1978-79 2-2 1978-02-15 League Cup 1st round at Feethams, Darlington through 3-2 on aggregate
1983-84 1-3 1984-02-21 Associate Members Cup, 1st round at Field Mill
1985-86 0-3 1986-03-27 Associate Members Cup, 1st round at Feethams
1986-87 1-2 1986-11-16 FA Cup 1st round at Feethams
2004-05 0-0 2004-09-28 (aet, 4-3 on penalities) LDV Vans Trophy 1st round at Field Mill
2006-07 0-1 2006-11-28 Johnstone's Paint Trophy at 96.6 TFM Darlington Arena

Played for both sides: Michael Brough, Matthew Carmichael, Gary Chapman, Barry Conlon, John Downie, Stephen Foster, Steve Harper, Paul Heckingbottom, Alex Jeannin, Ian Juryeff, Fred Laycock, Jefferson Louis, Paul Mayo, John McClelland, Les McJannet, Lawrie Madden, Terence Melling, John Moore, Kenneth Murray, Francis O'Connor, James O'Neill, Stanley Peach, John Reed, Mark Rhodes, Arthur Sharp, Neil Wainwright.

Billy McEwan, who played for the Stags in 1976-77, was Darlington manager in 1992-93.

For details on leagues fixture between the sides, see i.e. the Stagsnet statistical preview on our game at Darlington in January 2011.

A very interesting cup final is awaited. Bring on the Hatters. Will the Stags win their first final trophy in 24 years? Or will the Quakers win their first-ever cup silverware? Remains to be seen. Ticket sales before the clash have exceeded 22.000 spectators from both sides. Come on Mansfield !!!

Svante Bernhard aka Sweden Stag


Latest | May 2011