STAGS THROW AWAY 2 GOAL LEAD&MISS OUT ON PLAY-OFFS
English Football League - Sky Bet League Two
Crawley Town 2 - 2 Mansfield Town
Cox 34, Roberts 55. D.Rose 11, Whiteman 23.
Attendance: 2635 (387 from Mansfield)
Date: 6 May 2017
Martin Shaw at the Broadfield Stadium
Mansfield Town drew 2-2 in the final game of the season at Crawley Town to finish outside the play-offs in what turned into a disappointing day. The Stags needed results to go their way elsewhere but most importantly needed to win themselves and were unable to do that despite a tremendous performance in the opening 30 minutes. The Stags were ahead on 11 minutes when Joel Byrom knocked the ball forward into the area, Danny Rose controlled with one touch and fired into the bottom right corner of the net from 12 yards. The Stags had great chances to increase the lead as Ben Whiteman headed over a golden chance unmarked from 10 yards from Alfie Potter’s fine cross, then Matt Green teed up Whiteman for a low shot that the keeper saved well low down, before the Stags deservedly went further ahead on 23 minutes. Ben Whiteman ran forward from inside his own half and with runners either side distracting defenders, Whiteman kept going before firing a precision shot in off the left post from the edge of the D. The Stags had chances to go 3-0 up as Hayden White crossed from the right and Mal Benning volleyed wide of the left post in what might have been a carbon copy of his blinder against Newport last season, then Potter pulled the ball back from the byline on the left to Green who turned well in the area to create space for himself and his low shot was saved by the keeper with his legs. It was as good a half hour as we’ve seen from the Stags with 6 great chances created with Potter, MacDonald, Whiteman, Byrom, Danny Rose and Green so lively going forward tearing Crawley to shreds and the game should have been out of sight. But one piece of sloppy defending on 34 minutes completely changed the momentum of the game. Andre Blackman crossed from the left, and Dean Cox was allowed all the time he wanted to control the ball 12 yards from goal, and fire into the left corner of the net. So sloppy from Mansfield. Mansfield could have re-established the two goal lead as MacDonald teed up Whiteman for a low-cross shot which was just wide of the left post as Green slid in to try to turn it home. As good as the first half was, the second half was a massive disappointment. Crawley were level on 55 minutes from a corner. Steve Evans felt it should not have been a corner as MacDonald did superbly to block a cross from Boldewijn, and the ball ricocheted back off Boldewijn and out. From the video, it’s hard to tell if, when the ball struck Boldewijn again, it was already out for a corner or not. The corner from the right was taken short to Jordan Roberts who fired a magnificent shot just inside the right post from just outside the area. That was a high quality goal. After that it was Crawley who came closer to taking all three points as Whiteman did well to clear off the line from Jimmy Smith’s header, Kean saved well with his legs from the excellent James Collins, who surely should be playing in a better side than Crawley, Kean saved well again with his legs as Collins got to a near post corner before Bennett, and then Collins fired against the inside of the post and out again. Mansfield had done very little going forward in the second half, but could have regained the lead as George Taft fired over from a good position, then Krystian Pearce sent a thumping header just wide from a MacDonald corner. It finished 2-2 which was a disappointing finale. As it turned out, Carlisle and Blackpool, who occupied the final two play-offs spots at the start of the day, both won anyway, so whatever Mansfield or any of the other chasing pack had done, would have counted for nothing. Mansfield finish 4 points outside the play-offs in 12th place. Nevertheless it’s been a really exciting second half of the season as Mansfield took the chase for the play-offs to the final day, and undoubtedly a roller-coaster, just as Steve Evans predicted it would be when he came in.
After the game Steve Evans said that he wants to be fighting for a top 3 place next season rather than fighting for a top 7 place. Evans has a meeting with John and Carolyn Radford on Tuesday to talk about plans for next season and he said that providing that meeting goes well he will move forward with meetings with the current players on Wednesday and move forward with bringing in some better quality players for next season. Evans has so far just had one January transfer window to improve the squad. I fully expect that Evans, with his track record, will bring in some even higher quality players and I think we will be in for a really exciting season next season.
FULL REPORT IN THE MATCH CENTRE
MATCH REPORT: No last day fairytale as Stags miss out on play-offs
chad.co.uk, Saturday 06 May 2017
Mansfield Town ended the Sky Bet League Two season in 12th place in the table after a disappointing final-day draw at managerless Crawley. The Stags were still in with an outside chance of sneaking into the play-off places ahead of kick-off, but eventually fell four points shy of the top seven. Mansfield Town's Ben Whiteman celebrates after scoring a second goal against Crawley Town - Photo by Chris Holloway The noisy band of travelling Stags fans who made the long journey south to Sussex were treated to an entertaining, end-to-end opening 45 minutes. Those away supporters were celebrating after only 12 minutes Danny Rose struck. Joel Byrom touched the ball neatly to Rose, and he picked his spot from 15 yards as he slotted home his 10th goal of the season. The hosts almost hit back to level minutes later, but the unmarked Jimmy Smith planted a poor header wide. Mansfield Town's Danny Rose celebrates his opening goal - Photo by Chris Holloway Ben Whiteman headed over the top for the Stags, before they doubled their lead midway through the opening half. And it was Whiteman who struck superbly, firing in off a post from just outside the Crawley box. The visitors were in cruise control at that point against Crawley, and Malvind Benning almost extended the lead when he volleyed narrowly over the top. The hosts then halved the deficit 11 minutes before the interval. Mansfield Town's Ben Whiteman slips past his marker nad looks to make the pass - Photo by Chris Holloway Andre Blackman crossed the ball in for Dean Cox, who chested down expertly before poking a shot home. Ten minutes after the restart the hosts evened it up. This time Jordan Roberts produced a top-drawer finish as he fired home left-footed from 20 yards. The turnaround was almost completed in the 64th minute when Whiteman was forced to hack Smith’s effort of the Stags’ goal-line. The hosts were looking the more likely to strike again as the game entered the final 20 minutes. James Collins lashed in a super shot which Jake Kean was forced to save well. The same player thumped a shot against the post with seven minutes left. CRAWLEY: Morris, Young, Connolly (Yorwerth, 70), McNerney, Blackman, Djalo (Harrold, 90), Smith, Boldewijn, Cox (Clifford, 89), Collins, Roberts. Subs not used: Mersin, Bawling, Tajbakhsh, Lelan. STAGS: Kean, White (Taft, 71), Pearce, Bennett, Benning, Whiteman, Byrom, Potter (Coulthirst, 66), MacDonald, Rose (Hamilton, 75), Green. Subs not used: Lee Collins, Jensen, McGuire, Lewis Collins. REFEREE: Carl Boyeson of East Yorkshire. ATTENDANCE: 2,635 (387 away). CHAD STAGS MAN OF THE MATCH: Ben Whiteman.
Read more at: http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/match-report-no-last-day-fairytale-as-stags-miss-out-on-play-offs-1-8530661
Crawley Town 2 Mansfield Town 2: Reds stage resounding fightback to earn thrilling draw Jordan Roberts scored Crawley Town's second goal against Mansfield Town GRAHAM CARTER Email 19:3521:14Saturday 06 May 2017 0 HAVE YOUR SAY Crawley Town finished the season with a thrilling 2-2 draw against play-off-chasing Mansfield Town. The game provided plenty of goals and action while the crowd helped generate a superb atmosphere to round off a disappointing season with some excitement. Among the visitors at the Checkatrade Stadium were the club's Turkish owner Ziya Eren and former Reds manager Steve Evans who is now in charge of Mansfield. The Stags looked sharper out of the blocks and soon built themselves a 2-0 lead through goals by Danny Rose and Ben Whiteman. Crawley recovered to 2-2 thanks to goals either side of half-time by Dean Cox and Jordan Roberts. Reds striker Matt Harrold had been put in charge of the team for the final game of the season following the departure of former head coach Dermot Drummy on Thursday. He named himself on the bench and made just one change from the side which lost 2-0 at Cambridge last Saturday as Jordan Roberts came in for Josh Payne. Reds had the first taste of the action as James Collins combined with Enzio Boldewijn to set-up Dean Cox for a shot which was blocked by Mansfield's Mal Benning. The Stags had a penalty appeal turned down after Mark Connolly brought down captain Krystian Pearce in the area. Mansfield took the lead two minutes later when Joel Byrom supplied Rose who tucked the ball under keeper Glenn Morris from 14 yards. Whiteman then went close with a header over the bar from eight yards. The visitors soon extended their lead when Whiteman went on a run from the halfway line and struck a shot from 22 yards which went in off the post. As Mansfield look to put the game to bed, Morris made a great save to deny Matt Green after good work by Alfie Potter. Cox brought Crawley back into the game with a great finish, chesting down Andre Blackman's cross before volleying the ball into the net. Crawley went close to drawing level when Enzio Boldewijn dribbled into the area and crossed but no-one could connect with the ball. Reds equalised in incredible style as a short corner was played to Jordan Roberts and he fired a superb shot into the net with his left foot from over 20 yards. Crawley's fans had been in good cheer throughout but really came into their own after Reds' second goal, creating a great atmosphere. This seemed to spur their players on as Reds twice went close to taking the lead when James Collins put a ball across the goal, with no-one connecting. Jimmy Smith then saw his header cleared off the line from Cox's fine cross. James Collins nearly gave them the lead when he raced into the area and held off a challenge in the area from Rhys Bennett, shot but was denied by keeper Jake Kean. In a thrilling final 20 minutes George Taft shot wide from close-range for the Stags and Crawley's James Collins fired agonisingly against the post. Harrold brought himself on in injury-time to tremendous applause from the crowd, but there there was not enough time to grab what would have been a fairytale winner as the game ended all-square.
REDS: Morris, Young, Connolly (Yorwerth 69), Boldewijn, Smith (capt), Roberts, Blackman, J.Collins, McNerney, Djalo (Harrold 90), Cox (Clifford 88) Unused subs: Mersin, Bawling, Tajbakhsh, Lelan
MANSFIELD: Kean, Bennett, Benning, Pearce (capt), Potter (Coulthirst 66), Green, White (Taft 69), MacDonald, Byrom, Whiteman, Rose (Hamilton 74) Unused subs: Jensen, Lee Collins, McGuire, Lewis Collins
REFEREE: Carl Boyeson ATTENDANCE: 2,635 (387 away)
MAN OF THE MATCH: Jordan Roberts
Read more at: http://www.crawleyobserver.co.uk/news/crawley-town-2-mansfield-town-2-reds-stage-resounding-fightback-to-earn-thrilling-draw-1-7949776
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