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Season 17/18 Stagsnet Match Report
Pre-Season Friendly
Mansfield Town  
3 - 1
 Derby County
Graham 65, Angol pen 77, Hamilton 80.
 Mason Bennett 70.
Attendance: 4058 (1394 from Derby)
Date: 18 July 2018


Martin Shaw at the One Call Stadium, Field Mill

Mansfield Town put in a hugely encouraging performance to beat a highly fancied Derby County, managed by new boss Frank Lampard, 3-1 at the One Call Stadium this evening, in the first of four pre-season friendlies against Championship opposition in the space of ten days. The Stags had to defend well and keep their shape well in the first half as Derby had most of the possession and knocked the ball around impressively. The Stags were hanging on in truth, but did so with rugged defending. Having kept Derby out for 60 minutes, the Stags changed most of their outfield side, and with an increased intensity going forward, scored 3 times in 15 minutes, with Jordan Graham capitalising on a goalkeeping error, then Lee Angol brought down for a penalty after a great ball from Calum Butcher to Jacob Mellis to Angol, and burying the penalty himself, and finally CJ Hamilton finishing into an empty net after Angol went round the keeper following great play from Omari Sterling-James. In between, Derby scored through Langwith youngster Mason Bennett after Bobby Olejnik pushed away a shot from Bradley Johnson and David Nugent knocked back to Bennett. The goal came with trialist defender Nathan Cameron off the field with an injury and that was the only disappointing aspect of an enjoyable evening. After the game, boss David Flitcroft said he will find out tomorrow whether Cameron’s injury is serious. Plenty of players caught the eye for the Stags, especially central defensive three Matt Preston, Krystian Pearce and Hayden White for the first 60 minutes keeping an impressive Derby at bay, and then for the final 30 minutes, Lee Angol, Jordan Graham, Omari-Sterling-James, Calum Butcher, Jacob Mellis and CJ Hamilton caused Derby’s second string plenty of problems at the back. Will Atkinson was the one Stags player to play 90 minutes, and impressed throughout, at right wing-back and then switching to right back.

The Stags played the same 10 outfield players for the first 60 minutes, then switched all but one of the outfield players as follows:

Mansfield Town
1st half team (3-5-2):
Conrad Logan;
Hayden White, Matt Preston (new signing from Swindon), Krystian Pearce;
Will Atkinson, Alex MacDonald, Neal Bishop (new signing from Scunthorpe), Otis Khan (new signing from Yeovil), Mal Benning;
Tyler Walker (season loan from Forest), Craig Davies (new signing from Oldham).

2nd half team, from 60 minutes (3-5-2):
Bobby Olejnik;
Paul Digby, Nathan Cameron (on trial), Lewis Gibbens (youngster);
Will Atkinson, Calum Butcher, Jacob Mellis, Omari Sterling-James, CJ Hamilton;
Lee Angol, Jordan Graham (youngster).
Sub: Nyle Blake (youngster) (for Cameron, 71 mins). Formation switch to 4-4-2.

The Stags played 3-5-2 with both teams, as they have in every pre-season game so far, but switched to 4-4-2 when Nathan Cameron went off injured, with no player available to slot in as the third centre half to replace Cameron.

It was the Stags’ home crowd’s first opportunity to see the club’s five new signings in action, plus trialist Cameron.

The players missing were Rose (injured, expected to play next Tuesday), Mirfin (out until Christmas), Diamond (also revealed this week as injured), and Anderson (who was injured in Portugal and played on Tuesday night against Matlock just to get minutes in an U21 game).

Derby started the game with a very strong looking line-up, just missing new signing from Chelsea Mason Mount plus Harry Wilson.

Inside the first minute, good defending by White on Cameron Jerome.

Derby were starting the game so sharply and hit the bar on 3 minutes. Lively left-footed right winger Luke Thomas sent in a cross-shot that spun off Pearce and hit the bar with Logan beaten.

At the other end on 4 minutes, a good looking cross from Benning was punched away by Scott Carson under pressure.

On 5 minutes, Logan watched Cameron Jerome’s low shot from the edge of the D go just wide. On 10 minutes, left winger Tom Lawrence got into the area on the left, slipped White a dummy putting him on his backside, and fired over from 16 yards.

Tyler Walker did well to win the ball on 11 minutes, but couldn’t get past Andre Wisdom on the edge of the area. At the other end on 13 minutes, Pearce did really well to hold off Luke Thomas who was so lively on the Derby right.

More great play by Derby, knocking the ball around just outside the Stags area on 15 minutes, before Luke Thomas cut inside and fired just over the bar.

Otis Khan’s free kick from 35 yards was disappointing and over everyone on 21 minutes. A minute later, much better from Khan as he won a corner.

Mansfield’s first chance came on 24 minutes. Great play down the right from White with a marauding run, his low cross in found Davies, who laid back to Bishop, whose low shot was straight at the keeper.

Derby right back Jamie Hanson fired in a good strike from the edge of the area on 26 minutes which deflected off Benning and over the bar.

A brilliant save from Conrad Logan on 27 minutes as he was out quickly to deny Luke Thomas on a 1-on-1. More good defending from White on 29 minutes as he headed away a cross.

Derby were really impressive going forward, while the Stags were hanging on with impressive defending.

Benning did well to win the ball on 32 minutes and played the ball forward to Khan who couldn’t control it.

Good ratting from Bishop on 34 minutes, summed up his performance so far.

Then good play by Khan a minute later as he won a free kick 35 yards from goal in a central position. Khan took the free kick short to MacDonald, and again to Khan who fired in a left footed shot from 25 yards that keeper Carson caught in front of his face.

Good defending from Atkinson on 39 minutes on the edge of his own area.

A good punch away by Logan on 43 minutes from a corner.

An interesting first half. Derby kept possession well, but the Stags kept their shape and held them at bay. Just a couple of shots to report for the Stags, from Bishop and from Khan. White, Preston and Pearce all caught the eye defensively for the Stags, with Atkinson also impressing at right wing-back.

Half time 0-0

Mansfield made one change at the break, Olejnik replacing Logan in goal. Derby made seven changes at the break.

Great anticipation from Whit eon 50 minutes to nick the ball off Luke Thomas.

On 54 minutes, a lovely lay off from Davies to Bishop to Khan but Khan couldn’t get in a shot. Davies won a corner a minute later, which was cleared.

Poor from Benning on 56 minutes. He tried to beat two men and lost the ball to the second, Derby broke, Luke Thomas to Tom Lawrence to David Nugent who wastefully side-footed against the outside of the post from a great position.

The Stags made 9 changes on 59 minutes. Only Will Atkinson remained from the first half in 3-5-2 formation:
Bobby Olejnik;
Paul Digby, Nathan Cameron (on trial), Lewis Gibbens (youngster);
Will Atkinson, Calum Butcher, Jacob Mellis, Omari Sterling-James, CJ Hamilton;
Lee Angol, Jordan Graham (youngster).

Great defending from Hamilton against Luke Thomas on 61 minutes.

Derby brought on Mansfield youngster, Mason Bennett, from Langwith, on 63 minutes.

The Stags made it 1-0 on 65 minutes. The goal stemmed from the Stags pressing Derby, and Derby keeper Kelle Roos attempted a hurried clearance, which went straight to Jordan Graham just inside the area. Graham took a couple of touches before skilfully dinking the ball over the keeper into the net. It was good pressing from the Stags forward line and an intensity that the first half team had not shown.

A good clearance by Cameron on 67 minutes. Then a great challenge by young Gibbens a minute later.

Derby equalised on 70 minutes. A quick free kick taken by Bryson to his left to his left to Bradley Johnson whose low shot from 25 yards was pushed away by Bobby Olejnik. David Nugent knocked the ball back from the byline to Mason Bennett who knocked into the net from 7 yards. The goal came with trialist defender Nathan Cameron off the field with an injury.

Young Nyle Blake replaced Cameron. The Stags switched to 4-4-2 with no player available to slot in as the third centre half to replace Cameron. Blake was right midfield, Hamilton left back, Atkinson right back.

On 73 minutes, a Mellis corner was headed down by Gibbens, Angol tried an ambitious overhead kick but was crowded out.

Mansfield made it 2-1 on 77 minutes. A great ball from Calum Butcher to Jacob Mellis and another great ball to Angol in the area. Angol was bundled over from behind by Jacob Butterfield. Angol picked himself up to bury the penalty, sending the keeper the wrong way as he fired into the right of the net. It was a confident penalty and he never looked like missing.

A great save by Olejnik on 79 minutes as he smothered a shot from Keogh from point blank range.

Mansfield made it 3-1 on 80 minutes with a stunning goal. A Derby corner was cleared to Sterling-James on the right touchline. Sterling-James cut inside his man on the half way line and slid a sensational defence splitting pass forward to Angol who took a touch to go around the keeper, and Hamilton slid the ball into the empty net. Wonderful from Stering-James.

On 82 minutes, Bradley Johnson shot well for Derby from 23 yards.

Great play from Mellis on 83 minutes out to the left, where Hamilton made a great run and won a corner.

Then on 87 minutes great play from Jordan Graham out to Nyle Blake on the right and Blake’s cross just evaded Angol.

A rapturous reception for the home players at the final whistle. Scintillating stuff from Mansfield and a stunning final half an hour.

I’m not aware that Frank Lampard has been to the One Call Stadium before. He looked shell-shocked towards the end of the game. Welcome to Mansfield!!

Report by: Martin Shaw at the One Call Stadium, Field Mill

Line Up:
1st half team (3-5-2):
Conrad Logan - One great save when out quickly to deny Luke Thomas 1-on-1. One good punch from a corner.
Hayden White - Really impressed on the right of a defensive 3. One good header away. Good marauding run down the run to set up a chance for Bishop.
Matt Preston (new signing from Swindon) - Very solid central defensive display. Looks a great signing.
Krystian Pearce - Very solid.
Will Atkinson - Right wing-back and was mostly having to defend in the first half. Plenty of good play, calm on the ball.
Alex MacDonald - Did ok.
Neal Bishop (new signing from Scunthorpe) - Some good ratting to break play up. One low shot straight at the keeper.
Otis Khan (new signing from Yeovil) - Blew hot and cold. Some skilful play. One poor free kick.
Mal Benning - Given a difficult time by the tricky Luke Thomas, but did some good things, including a good cross.
Tyler Walker (season loan from Forest) - Didn’t stand out. Taking time to find his feet, but three more games before the season starts.
Craig Davies (new signing from Oldham) - Some fine hold-up play, mostly with his back to goal. Looks strong.

2nd half team, from 60 minutes (3-5-2):
Bobby Olejnik - Replaced Logan at half time. Saved from Blackman’s shot before the ball was turned into the net. One great save later on smothering a shot at point blank range;
Paul Digby - Composed in central defence.
Nathan Cameron (on trial) - Went off injured. David Flitcroft said he will find out tomorrow whether Cameron’s injury is serious.
Lewis Gibbens (youngster) - Impressed again, as he has in previous games.
Will Atkinson - see above.
Calum Butcher - Nice pass to Mellis in the build-up to the penalty. Starting to hint at why we signed him in the first place.
Jacob Mellis - One or two pieces of great play. Great ball to Angol for the penalty.
Omari Sterling-James - So lively. Outstanding play in the build-up to the third goal. Great pace.
CJ Hamilton - In the right place for his goal. Showed his great pace throughout. Defended well including one great piece of defending against the dangerous Luke Thomas.
Lee Angol - Electric. Won the penalty, which he converted, and went around the keeper to set up the third goal.
Jordan Graham (youngster) - Gifted the first goal but composed enough to take it. Looks as though he’s going to be quite a player. Great strength.
Sub Line Up:
Sub: Nyle Blake (youngster) (for Cameron, 71 mins) - One good cross at the end just evaded Angol.

By the way, here are the Mansfield squad numbers for the season:
Conrad Logan (1)
Hayden White (2)
Mal Benning (3)
Matt Preston (4)
Krystian Pearce (5)
Neal Bishop (6)
Alex MacDonald (7)
Jacob Mellis (8)
Craig Davies (9)
Otis Khan (10)
Will Atkinson (11)
Bobby Olejnik (12)
Paul Digby (14)
Paul Anderson (15)
Calum Butcher (16)
David Mirfin (18)
Tyler Walker (19)
CJ Hamilton (22)
Lee Angol (23)
Omari Sterling-James (24)
Lewis Gibbens (27)
Henri Wilder (28)
Jordan Graham (29)
Danny Rose (32)
Nathan Cameron (-)
Opposition Line Up:
(First-Half): Carson; Hanson, Wisdom, Davies, Lowe; Huddlestone, Thomas, Bryson, Jerome, Ledley, Lawrence.
(Second-Half): Roos, Lowe, Thomas (Bennett, 63’), Bryson (Butterfield, 72’), Lawrence (Blackman, 72’), Bogle, Keogh, Pearce, Thorne, Johnson, Nugent.

Ross Joyce

Season 17/18 Reports