STAGS BEATEN BY SUPERB STANLEY
Football League - Sky Bet League Two
Mansfield Town 2 - 3 Accrington Stanley
Green 27, Clements 88. Mingoia 3, Kee 72, Gornell 85
Attendance: 3271 (144 from Accrington)
Date: 2 January 2016
Martin Shaw at the One Call Stadium, Field Mill
Mansfield Town were beaten 3-2 at home by Accrington Stanley this afternoon. It was a disappointing result for the Stags but sometimes you have to admit you were beaten by a side who played very well. Accrington’s performance going forward was comfortably the best Mansfield have come up against this season and in Josh Windass they have the best player in League Two by a country mile. And the supporting cast to Windass of Billy Kee, who played as well as we hoped he would play for us last season, Piero Mingoia, Sean McConville, Bradley Halliday and Terry Gornell were also excellent. Having said all that, Mansfield could certainly still have got something from this game after pushing Accrington back for at least half an hour either side of half time.
Accrington were ahead after just 3 minutes. Windass got past Rose too easily on the left and his cross into the middle was excellent and Mingoia nipped in between Adams and Jack Thomas to poke home from 6 yards. Against such a good attacking side, the decision to put a non-defender in Rose at right back had already backfired. The return of Hunt from injury can’t come soon enough, but with the resources available today I would have put Collins at right back as although he’s not a natural right back he is at least a defender by trade. It’s also not the first time Adams has allowed an opponent to score from such a position. The goal highlighted that the two regular full-backs from earlier in the season of Hunt and Benning have been very badly missed through injury. Another early goal conceded by the Stags. Mansfield had got the third best defensive record in the league before today but this was the 10th goal to have come in the opening 15 minutes of games, out of 22 conceded in total by that stage. Accrington could have blown Mansfield away completely in the opening 25 minutes with outstanding attacking play, as Kee fired wide from wonderful play on the right by Windass. Then Jensen did well to save bravely at the feet of Kee, and then he saved superbly as McConville was clean through on goal.
Mansfield were level out of the blue on 27 minutes with a wonderful finish from Matt Green. A hopeful ball forward by Collins was badly miscontrolled by Tom Davies allowing Green to run into the area on the left. From a tight angle Green’s only hope of scoring was to fire just inside the far post and his aim was perfect as he gave the keeper no chance. A wonderful goal, Green’s 8th goal of the season, and his 4th in the last 7 games. The goal changed the momentum of the game. Suddenly the Stags were on the front foot, pushing Accrington back. Two minutes later, brilliant play from Green on the left touchline, getting into the area and unselfishly electing not to shoot but instead to try to find Lambe, but keeper Mooney used every inch of his 6 ft 9 inches (the tallest keeper in the Football League) to grab the ball at full stretch. The Stags were the better side for the rest of the half and had other chances to go in front.
The Stags started the second half on the front foot too with a real intensity forcing Accrington back. A great opportunity for Mansfield to take the lead as Jack Thomas fired over the bar on 54 minutes. Then a big blow for the Stags as Matt Green was forced to limp off having earlier been deliberately brought down at the end of the first half by Tom Davies, and the remarkably inept referee didn't even see the challenge as a booking. Hopefully Green will not be out for any length of time after his fine performance today and he was really missed after going off.
With Mansfield still in the ascendancy, Accrington re-took the lead on 72 minutes. A mistake by Collins allowed Terry Gornell to break forward, he pulled the ball back for Crooks, who tried to square the ball, it looped up off the boot of Krystian Pearce perfectly into the path of Billy Kee who hit a bullet of a volley from 17 yards that fizzed past Jensen into the net. Some fans have blamed Jensen for the goal, but in my opinion it was hit with too much power to blame him. Certainly a bit of good luck with the ball looping up but a great finish from Kee. Accrington made it 3-1 on 85 minutes. Adam Buxton crossed from the left and Gornell headed towards the bottom right corner of the net from 8 yards as Collins jumped and didn’t get to it. Jensen made a fine one-handed save to keep it out, but bashed his head on the post as he did so meaning he was a split second late in reacting to the loose ball which Gornell slotted into the net. No blame to Jensen in my opinion, but Collins was at fault for missing the header and then not reacting at all to the loose ball.
Mansfield pulled a goal back on 88 minutes. Westcarr was pushed in the back just outside the D of the area. Chris Clements stepped up to take the resulting free kick from 24 yards and curled a beauty over the wall and into the right corner of the net. A super strike from Clements. It set up a grandstand finish with Pearce up front. But it was Accrington who came closest to scoring again as Kee played a lovely ball forward to Gornell who should have scored from 8 yards but Jensen was out quickly to make a superb save. In the 4th minute of 5 minutes of stoppage time Lee Collins had a shot blocked but that was as close as the Stags came to equalising.
In truth it was wonderful entertainment in my opinion between two top half of the table teams. But it did highlight to me that we are short of a player or two in order to be a promotion outfit. Certainly another striker that’s for sure. And of course we desperately need Hunt and Benning back from injury.
Frustrating that we’ve still yet to beat Accrington in 10 attempts in the league since they reformed in 1968 (though we did of course beat them before that) but today they were superb going forward.
report in the Match Centre
REPORT: Mansfield Town 2-3 Accrington Stanley
chad.co.uk report by John Lomas, Saturday 02 January 2016
Mansfield Town’s poor home results this season continued today as they succumbed to a 3-2 defeat against an excellent Accrington Stanley side on a dark, dismal and drizzly afternoon at One Call Stadium.
Accrington dominated the first half hour after going ahead on three minutes and would have sewn the game up but for some great saves from Brian Jensen.
Read more: http://www.hucknalldispatch.co.uk/sport/local-sport/report-mansfield-town-2-3-accrington-stanley-1-7653118#ixzz3wAazMSYW
Against the run of play, Matt Green, celebrating his 29th birthday, levelled the scores on 27 minutes.
But the Stags failed to net again in their best spell of the game before the break.
After the interval there were few clear chances until Accrington struck again through ex-Stag Billy Kee on 72 minutes, with his 10th of the season, and sub Terry Gornell on 84 minutes wrapped the game up.
There was late hope as Chris Clements bagged a splendid 25 yard free kick on 88 minutes.
But in truth Mansfield didn’t deserve a point on the day against one of the best sides seen at OCS all season so far.
Stags brought both Nathan and Jack Thomas into the starting line-up for their first game of 2016.
Nathan Thomas replaced Matty Blair on the wing while Jack Thomas took over Craig Westcarr’s role just behind striker Matt Green.
Although suffering with a slight groin strain, Adi Yussuf was named on the bench for a possible late cameo if needed.
Accrington’s defeat at Northampton last time out was their first in eight games.
Mansfield again made a slow start at home and fell behind in the third minute due to more poor defending.
Windass was all too easily able to get down the left to the by-line to cross and Mingoia was first to the ball to turn home from six yards.
Soon after Chaoman’s short pass to Pearce was intercepted and Mingoia was again in on goal, only for Adams to produce a superb saving tackle.
Stanley came again and Windass slotted a great pass into the path of Kee in the box, Pearce’s challenge doing just enough to make Kee slot his low finish the wrong side of the post.
The home side rallied and started to have some possession, but the visitors’ defence was firm and they looked very quick on the counter, Windass showing good acceleration to get into the box and force Jensen to get down to save at his near post.
Soon after McConville easily ghosted past Rose on the left and got away a low finish that Jensen turned aisde with his legs.
Kee sparked an angry confrontation on 24 minutes as he slid in late on Jensen on the wet surface as the keeper gathered a through ball and caught him full on.
Jensen needed treatment as players gathered angrily around Kee and the referee eventually showed him a yellow card.
Accrington should have been 2-0 up on 26 minutes. Kee held the ball up under pressure from Collins to set up McConville, who walked through a static defence only to see Jensen make a brilliant block from six yards.
A minute later and against the run of play, Stags scored with their first shot on target.
Defender Davies failed to cut out a through ball and Green was away, racing into the box on the left and netting off the inside of the far post with a deadly left-footed finish.
Stags were suddenly awake and Mooney did well to cut out Green’s ball across the box to an unmarked Lambe, then Clements warmed his hands from 20 yards.
On 37 minutes Stags broke well down the right and Green held off Wright and made space for a venomous shot that wasn’t far over the bar.
On 45 minutes Rose slid in to win the ball cleanly as McConville tried to break, so home players and fans alike were furious when the Stanley player stayed down and the referee decided to book Rose.
Halliday’s aggressive run in stoppage time ended with him pulling a finish well wide.
When Green was caught late after sending the ball forward and no action was taken the home fans booed the referee loudly and Adam Murray was straight over to have words at the end of a half in which Stags were fortunate to still be in the game.
Straight after the restart Green got down the left and pulled a low pass back from Lambe, whose sidefooted finish was on target but without power.
Jack Thomas then gave the ball away with a loose pass and, in sliding in to win it back, hacked Mingoia down to earn a caution.
Nathan Thomas had made little impact on the game and was replaced by Matty Blair on 53 minutes.
Within two minutes his low cross was backheeled by Green and pushed away by Mooney and, with the keeper out of his goal, Jack Thomas was well over with his shy at the net from 20 yards.
On 64 minutes Mansfield made a change up front as Westcarr took over from Green.
There had been little goalmouth incident all half, but Accrington grabbed the lead out of the blue on 72 minutes.
A break down the right saw an Accrington shot blocked but the ball dropped fortunately and invitingly for Kee 14 yards from goal where he volleyed a superb finish beyond Jensen.
It was all over with six minutes to go as Buxton crossed from the left to the far post. Gornell’s first effort was turned onto the post by Jensen, but he was helpless as Gornell smashed home the follow-up high into the net.
The game looked over, but two minutes from time, Stags pulled one back with a perfect free from Clements.
Stepping up 25 yards from goal in a central position, he picked out the top right corner, giving Mooney no chance.
In the five added minutes Jensen again did superbly well to thwart Gornell in a one-on-one.
But there was no way back for Stags with home fans letting their feelings be known at the final whistle.
STAGS: Jensen, Rose, Pearce, Collins, Adams, Lambe (Yussuf 76), Clements, Chapman, Nathan Thomas (Blair 53), Jack Thomas, Green (Westcarr 64). Subs not used: Shearer, Beardsley, Tafazolli, McGuire.
ACCRINGTON: Mooney, Pearson, Davies, Mingoia (Gornell 71), Windass (McCarton 67), McConville (Buxton 76), Crooks, Wright, Conneely, Kee, Halliday. Subs not used: Etheridge, Barry, Proctor, Wakefield.
REFEREE: Scott Duncan of Northumberland.
ATTENDANCE: 3,271 (144 away).
CHAD STAGS MAN OF THE MATCH: Brian Jensen.
Mansfield 2 Stanley 3
by Dany Robson
Stanley returned to winning ways thanks to an early goal from Piero Mingoia and second half strikes from Billy Kee and Terry Gornell in a 3-2 win against Mansfield.
Winger Mingoia gave the Reds a dream start with a goal on four minutes before the Stags levelled through Matt Green on 27 minutes.
However Kee fired home against his former club after the break and sub Gornell wrapped it up although a free kick three minutes from time by Chris Clements made it a nervy ending for the Reds.
Stanley should have been out of sight in the first half. Their dream start came when Josh Windass whipped in a cross from the left and Mingoia got ahead of his marker to fire home the opener.
The Reds almost got a second minutes later after a neat passing move but a last ditch tackle denied Mingoia a clear shot on goal.
And Kee came close on 10 minutes when he latched onto Windass’s pass but could only steer his shot wide.
Stanley were dominant and former Burnley keeper Brian Jensen denied Windass , kept out Sean McConville at the near post and was at full stretch to halt Sean McConville as the Reds looked to increase their advantage.
However, Stanley were made to pay for their missed chances when, with Mansfield’s first shot on goal on 27 minutes, top scorer Green got the ball in the area and his strike came off the inside of the post to level the scores.
The home side then came close to a second as Jason Mooney stopped Green’s cross before it landed to unmarked Reggie Lambe for what would have been an easy tap-in as the game swung in Mansfield’s favour.
Green, on his birthday, was a dangerman for the Stags and he got the better of the Reds defence from a long clearance but thankfully drove his effort over the bar as it remained level at the break with the game getting increasingly fiesty.
Lambe had a scuffed chance immediately after the re-start and Jack Thomas had the goal at his mercy with Mooney stranded and fired high and wide on 55 minutes.
The game got disjointed but John Coleman brought on Shay McCartan and Terry Gornell and the latter was involved in the move which led to Kee’s goal on 72 minutes.
Gornell found Matt Crooks who spun around and the ball came out to striker Kee who smashed it home for his 10th goal of the season.
And it was Gornell who put the icing on the cake in the 85th minute when he got on the end of fellow sub Adam Buxton’s cross. His initial effort was kept out by a combination of Jensen and the post but he was there to fire home the rebound.
However it was a nervy ending when, on 87 minutes, a Clements free kick found the top corner of the net and, despite five minutes of injury time, Stanley moved back into the play-off places.
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