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STAGS BOUNCE BACK WITH VITAL WIN OVER FOREST GREEN
3rd March 2019 22:00


English Football League - Sky Bet League Two
Mansfield Town 1 - 0 Forest Green Rovers
Mills OG 69. Walker sent off 90+7.
Attendance: 5256 (171 from Forest Green)

Date: 23 February 2019

Martin Shaw and Simon Chamberlain at the One Call Stadium, Field Mill

Mansfield Town bounced back from bitterly disappointing defeats at Newport and Notts County with a vital 1-0 win against Forest Green Rovers in a tense game at the One Call Stadium. The only goal of the game came on 69 minutes when Tyler Walker slid the ball forward to CJ Hamilton in the area. Hamilton might have been offside but no flag went up, he turned and fired goalwards, keeper Lewis Ward parried his shot up in the air. Walker rose for the ball with the keeper, the keeper flapped at the ball knocking it on to Walker’s head, the ball ricocheted off Walker’s head and was going well wide of the goal until defender Joseph Mills, in trying to head the ball over his own bar, only succeeded in headed into his own net off the underside of the bar. After the game, Forest Green boss Mark Cooper didn’t feel it was a foul on the keeper and his keeper should have done better. From the video, Hamilton appears to be just onside as the ball is played to him by Walker, so it was a good decision from the officials to allow the goal. The Stags had been the better side in the first half going close on six occasions, with Tyler Walker forcing a great save from the keeper with a superb shot from outside the box, while Forest Green only went close once when Jordan Smith pushed a Junior Mondal shot wide. The Stags started the second half well, with Tyler Walker going close again forcing the keeper to save with his legs and Gethin Jones then heading just over the bar. But after the Stags took the lead, it was Forest Green who went close on three occasions in the final 10 minutes, with Doidge heading wide, Mondal shooting wide, and Doidge knocking just over the bar from close range from a Mills shot. The Stags hung on to the victory as four minutes of stoppage time was added on, which became seven minutes with Tyler Walker shown a straight red card in the 7th minute of stoppage time. Walker showed his middle finger to the linesman in a foul and abusive gesture which will earn him a two game suspension. It was incredibly stupid from Walker that was not costly in this match, but will leave the Stags without him against Cheltenham and Port Vale. The stupidity of the sending-off took a little of the gloss off the victory. A nervy and battling win from Mansfield, which was deserved overall, with the defence in good form, including Matt Preston, Krystian Pearce and Mal Benning, Benning slotting in very well into central defence and making one magnificent goal-saving tackle on George Williams in the first half, as did Preston on Williams in the second half. Willem Tomlinson also impressed with a fine performance in midfield in his first start for the club, playing alongside Neal Bishop, while CJ Hamilton was much improved at left wing back causing Forest Green several problems. So Mansfield keep their 100% home record against Forest Green in league games (now 7 wins out of 7). The four top sides all won, so Mansfield remain two points above 4th placed MK Dons. Cheltenham are the visitors to the One Call Stadium next Saturday in another game which is free for under 18’s.

FULL REPORT IN THE MACH CENTRE

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REPORT: Mansfield Town 1-0 Forest Green Rovers
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Saturday 23 February 2019

Tyler Walker was the Mansfield Town hero with the only goal of an entertaining game as they pipped promotion visiting rivals Forest Green Rovers 1-0 at the One Call Stadium this afternoon. But Walker ended the afternoon with a straight red card in the fifth added minute, possibly for something he said, and the 21-goal hotshot will now miss three vital games. After two defeats in a row, Stags desperately needed the win to stay in the top three and thoroughly deserved in on the day with a much better display after the poor show at Notts County. Walker made the breakthrough with a 69th minute header, though Stags rode their luck near the end as a classy Rovers side threw everything they had got at it.

The Stags side showed one change with last weekend's debutant defender Ben Turner dropped to the bench and Mal Benning moving across from left wing back into the back three with Ryan Sweeney completing his two-game ban. That allowed Willem Tomlinson to come into midfield for his full Mansfield debut. CJ Hamilton switched across to left wing back and Gethin Jones to right wing back with Tyler Walker a lone striker, backed by Jorge Grant and Jacob Mellis just behind him.

Mills just managed to head away before Jones could head home a Hamilton cross in Stags' first raid in the opening seconds. Rovers hit straight back and Stags made hard work out of clearing a low Brown cross. Grant was unable to direct a finish at goal from a Walker cross as action switched straight back to the other end. Ward had his first save to make on six minutes as sublime control by Grant saw him then send a cutting pass inside a defender for Hamilton to rade away onto and send a low shot on target that Ward was in the way of. Stags first corner two minutes later saw Bishop win it at the back post and the ball dropped invitingly for Pearce who sent a tame finish wide from six yards. But Rovers were dangerous and a neat move down the centre got Williams into the box, Benning coming up with a brilliant saving tackle.

Soon after, a Rovers break ended with Smith having to block a low Mondal finish at his near post. The game calmed down and went through a much quieter spell, though a Superb low Hamilton cross had Rovers worried until Gunning turned it behind. Preston was booked on 29 minutes as he halted a Rovers break from a Stags corner by felling Winchester. Three minutes later Benning was also yellow-carded for a push off the ball. Out came the card again seconds later as Digby barged over Grant. Stags' best move so far came on 36 minutes as Grant slipped Hamilton into the box on the left and he pulled back a low cross that Jones fired just wide. Mansfield were then unlucky on 40 minutes as Benning's long range shot clipped Gunning in the box and, with the keeper wrong-footed, the ball bounced narrowly wide of the gaping goal. Walker then forced Ward into a superb top-over save from his snapshot from the edge of the box on 43 minutes. On 45 minutes Smith turned away a low Digby shot from 25 yards as entertaining half endless goalless. Mansfield came back out all guns blazing and within two minutes Ward was forced to deny Walker with his legs from close range and Jones headed inches over. Winchester was booked on 51 minutes for a tug on Hamilton as he tried to break over the halfway line. On 59 minutes Rovers had a chance as Williaams cut in from the left in the box only see Preston throw himself superbly in the way of his finish. Smith was comfortably placed to take a low Digby shot. Another Stags break was illegally halted as Gunning hacked down Mellis to take a booking on 64 minutes. Mansfield plugged away and finally made the breakthrough on 69 minutes. Amid a scramble Hamilton turned and forced Ward to push the ball upwards as he saved, Walker quickly jumping in to head home before the keeper could then reclaim it as it dropped. With just six minutes left a Doidge header dropped just wide from a corner as Rovers searched for an equaliser. Two minutes later another corner dropped for Mondal to poke wide from 12 yards as home nerves jangled. Two minutes from time Doidge got a touch onto a Mills shot and it sailed inches over. Tomlinson was hurt in committing a stoppage time foul and booked before limping off to be replaced by Turner. Stags suffered a huge blow on 90+5 minutes as Walker was shown the straight red card, which took the shine off a fine afternoon right at the death.

MANSFIELD: J. Smith; Preston, Pearce, Benning; Jones, Bishop, Tomlinson, Grant, Mellis, Hamilton; Walker. Subs not used: Logan, MacDonald, Khan, Atkinson, Ajose, Turner, A. Smith.

FOREST GREEN: Ward, Collins (Godwin-Malife 88), Rawson, Winchester, Doidge, Brown, Williams, Gunning (McGinley 81), Digby (McCoulsky 81), Mills, Mondal. Subs not used: Montgomery, James, Liddle, McCoulsky, Reid.

REFEREE: Matthew Donohue of Manchester. ATTENDANCE: 5,256 (171 away). CHAD STAGS MAN OF THE MATCH: Matt Preston.

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/report-mansfield-town-1-0-forest-green-rovers-1-9612788

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MATCH REPORT: Mansfield Town 1 Forest Green Rovers 0
by Noah Dougherty, Saturday 23 February 2019

https://www.fgr.co.uk/news/february-2019/match-report-mansfield-town-1-forest-green-rovers-0

Forest Green Rovers slipped to a narrow 1-0 defeat away at promotion chasing Mansfield Town.

Tyler Walker opened the scoring after 69 minutes and Rovers couldn't find away back into the game despite late chances.

Manager Mark Cooper had no reason to change his starting XI from the same one that beat Yeovil Town 3-0 the weekend prior.

Goalkeeper James Montgomery made a welcome return to the bench having not featured since sustaining the facial injury in the reverse fixture less than four weeks ago.

With both teams packing a punch going forward, it was no surprise that the game started quickly with chances at both ends within the opening 15 minutes.

The first of these openings came after six minutes as CJ Hamilton raced free down the left but Lewis Ward stood up well to make the save with his legs before pouncing on the loose ball.

George Williams had a great opportunity to open the scoring just three minutes later as he picked the ball up from Christian Doidge after some great interplay. Mansfield full-back Mal Benning got across to make the challenge though, denying the Rovers number 11 the opportunity to get a shot away.

In what was quickly becoming a wide-open affair, Junior Mondal was next to try his luck, forcing a save from Jordan Smith on the angle as Forest Green caught Mansfield on the break.

Just shy of the half-hour mark Hamilton caused more problems for Rovers as he set away down the Mansfield left. This time he opted for the cross rather than the shot and Gavin Gunning had to show great composure to steer the ball wide of his own goal.

Benning’s speculative effort six minutes before the break could well have opened the scoring as it stuck Gunning but the Rovers defender will have been relieved to see his unintentional deflection bounce behind for a corner.

Ward was once again called into action late in the first half as he was forced to push Tyler Walker’s long-range strike over the bar.

Keen for a goal against his former side, Paul Digby tried his luck from range when the space opened up for him, but Smith got down smartly to push the ball away.

The Stags started the second half with no let-up in intensity whatsoever and Ward was called back into action just two minutes after the break. Gethin Jones was initially denied by Joseph Mills before Ward had to get down sharply to deny Walker as he shot on the spin.

Forest Green Rovers began to apply a little added pressure as the hour mark approached, a clever move involving Reece Brown and Digby almost set Mondal in but Mansfield were able to prod the ball behind for a corner which came to nothing.

Forest Green’s best chance of the opening hour fell the way of Williams after 59 minutes as he raced into the area and turned back on his marker before firing an effort goalwards, Matt Preston hurling his body in the way to make a great block.

With 69 minutes on the clock the deadlock was finally broken.

Despite FGR calls for offside as Hamilton was played into the box, play went on and his shot was saved by Ward with the ball going up in the air. Ward looked to be fouled as he jumped for the second ball with Walker and Mills couldn’t stop the striker’s header looping in.

With 84 minutes on the clock Williams tried to create something for the visitors as he drove into the area, beating two players as he did, but his cross was blocked by a third Mansfield player.

Doidge almost found the target from the resulting corner, but he couldn’t get quite enough on his header and the ball flashed wide.

Having found the net in his first league appearance last weekend, Mondal could have been the hero for Rovers as he pounced on a bouncing ball in the area to fire wide.

Forest Green were a matter of inches away from finding a late equaliser as Mills fired a low ball across the area which Doidge got a toe to, sending it looping up and landing on the roof of the net.

In a late twist, Mansfield’s goalscorer Walker was given a straight red for an incident off the ball.

Mansfield Town XI: Smith, Benning, Preston, Pearce, Bishop, Mellis, Tomlinson (Turner 90+3), Walker, Jones, Hamilton, Grant

Unused subs: Logan, MacDonald, Khan, Atkinson, Ajose, Smith

Forest Green Rovers XI: Ward, Collins (Godwin-Malife 88’), Rawson, Winchester, Doidge, Brown, Williams, Gunning (McGinley 81’), Digby (McCoulsky 81’), Mills, Mondal

Unused subs: Montgomery, James, Liddle, Reid

Attendance: 5,256 (171 away)

Referee: Matthew Donohue

Man of the Match: Paul Digby

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Mansfield 1-0 Forest Green - Rovers top three hopes take a dent
https://www.stroudnewsandjournal.co.uk/sport/17455025.mansfield-1-0-forest-green-rovers-top-three-hopes-take-a-dent/

FOREST Green's automatic promotion hopes took a dent as they fell to their second successive away defeat against Mansfield Town.

Tyler Walker's second half header was all that seperated although there looked to be a foul on Lewis Ward in the build up.

Mansfield, who ended the game with 10 men after Walker was sent off in added time, probably edged it slightly but Forest Green had their moments with Christian Doidge coming agonisingly close to equalising late on but the defeat means Rovers are now seven points adrift of the top three.

Mark Cooper kept faith in the XI that dispatched Yeovil Town last Saturday.

James Montgomery returned to the bench while Dayle Grubb travelled but didn't make the matchday squad.

The early exchanges were lively as the teams picked up where they left off from the last time they met last month.

Both teams had decent opportunities in the opening 15 minutes as CJ Hamilton forced an early save from Lewis Ward while Junior Mondal had a similar chance down the other end.

Hamilton was causing problems for Rovers and make-shift full-back Carl Winchester.

There was a slight heart in mouth moment when the winger drilled in a low cross which was almost turned into the net by Gunning but luckily it went just outside of the post.

Mansfield applied late pressure at the end of the half and Gunning again gave Rovers fans another scare when Mal Benning's arrowed shot came off the defender and almost crept into the net but history was repeated and his blushes were spared.

The Stags almost took the lead just two minutes into the second half when a cross was blocked by Joseph Mills and the ball fell to Tyler Walker whose shot from close range was saved brilliantly by the feet of Ward.

Rovers grew into the second half and had a good spell. Williams had a great opportunity after Christian Doidge's switch set him free. He cut the ball onto his right foot to create an opening but his effort was blocked and went behind.

Despite their improvement they rarely tested Smith.

It was the hosts who broke the deadlock though on 69 minutes. Hamilton was played through and there was shouts for offside. His shot was well saved by Ward, the ball looped into the air and Walker pounced and got his head to it ahead of the keeper and it dropped into the net despite Mills' best effort to clear.

Rovers were dealt a further blow when Gunning was forced off with 10 minutes to go through injury. Nathan McGinley replaced him while Cooper brought on Shawn McCoulsky to add more fire power and Forest Green responded well.

Doidge missed a glorious chance when he had a free header from a corner but he glanced it wide on 84 minutes. Moments later, the striker teed up Mondal but his effort fizzed just wide.

The big moment came on the 90th minute when Mondal set up Mills who sent the ball towards Doidge who hooked it goalwards and it looked destined for the top corner but it dropped inches over the bar.

The game went well beyond the four minutes added time. Walker was sent off for an off the ball incident off the ball - believed to be swearing at an official but there was no time for Rovers to find a leveller as they drop to sixth.

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