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Season 21/22 Stagsnet Match Report
English Football League - Sky Bet League Two
Forest Green Rovers  
0 - 0
 Mansfield Town
Match abandoned after 4 minutes due to fog
Attendance: tbc (tbc from Mansfield)
Date: 18 January 2022


Martin Shaw at The New Lawn

Mansfield Town’s game at Forest Green Rovers this evening was abandoned after 4 minutes due to fog at the New Lawn.

It’s Mansfield’s first abandonment due to fog since 25 January 1997, away to Torquay, abandoned after 37 mins (thanks to Paul Taylor for that info). Almost exactly 25 years ago.

It was Mansfield’s first abandonment for any reason since the game was abandoned at this very ground due to a waterlogged pitch here on 15 December 2018.

When I arrived at the ground two hours before kick off there was no fog at all. But in the half hour before kick off, the fog became thicker and thicker.

The referee delayed kick off from 7.45 until 8.00, by which time it had eased sufficiently that you could just see from one side of the pitch to the other.

So the game kicked off at 8.00. But in the opening minutes of the game, it became thicker again and you could not see the far side of the pitch. The referee stopped play after 4 minutes. He tried to give it ten more minutes, and then another ten minutes, before abandoning the game.

It was the only decision he could take, having discussed with both captains and both managers. You simply couldn’t see from one side of the pitch to the other, so the linesmen couldn’t possibly adjudicate on offsides for example.

Very disappointing for both clubs, but especially for the Stags fans and players and management having made the trip down.

Incidentally, when leaving the ground, when you got down from the hill into Nailsworth, there was no fog there!

There was a shot in the 4 minutes of play, when Nathan Bishop caught a long range effort. From my position in the press box I couldn’t see who fired it in, but I was informed from viewers watching the live stream on iFollow where the camera was on the opposite side of the ground, that it was from Jamille Matt.

Such a shame as the game was eagerly anticipated. The Stags had won 6 games in a row, and were looking to equal the club record wins in a row in the Football League of 7, set in 1991 and 1962 (though we won 12 in a row in the Conference in 2013). Leaders Forest Green were on a club record of 13 games in the Football League without defeat.

The Stags had made one change from the side that beat Walsall. Ollie Clarke was out with a hamstring injury that forced him off at half time on Saturday. In came Ryan Stirk who missed Saturday’s game isolating with Covid.
The Stags started with three at the back, Rawson, Hawkins, and O’Toole, with Hewitt and McLaughlin at wing back.
Charsley was very unlucky not to start, after his match-winning two goals on Saturday.
Lapslie returned from injury on the bench. No Sinclair on the bench, reason unknown.

O’Toole was playing his first game since signing a 2.5 year contract until summer 2024. A great signing, when he had a very good offer to go to a League One club, and thanks go to John & Carolyn and David Sharpe for making it happen. The stats on O’Toole speak for themselves in how important a signing this was:
John-Joe O’Toole at MTFC this season:
with him not in the side: Played 16 Points 17
with him starting: Played 8 Points 21 (plus 2 wins out of 3 in FA Cup)

So, on to Barrow on Saturday. The Stags will aim to continue the winning run.

Report by: Martin Shaw at The New Lawn

Line Up:
Rawson, Hawkins, O’Toole;
Hewitt, Stirk, Maris, Quinn, McLaughlin;
Bowery, Oates.
Sub Line Up:
Subs not used: Stech, Nartey, Law, Charsley, Lapslie, Gale, Johnson.
Opposition Line Up:
(3-4-1-2): McGee; Godwin-Malife, Moore-Taylor, Cargill; Wilson, Stevenson, Hendry, Cadden; Young; Stevens, Matt. Subs not used: Thomas, Bernard, Sweeney, Aitchison, Edwards, Diallo, March.
Carl Brook

Season 21/22 Reports