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16th November 2021 21:35

English Football League - Sky Bet League Two
Stevenage 1 - 2 Mansfield Town
Cuthbert 55. O’Toole 19, Stirk 65
Attendance: 2,946 (535 from Mansfield)

Date: 13 November 2021

Martin Shaw at the Lamex Stadium, Broadhall Way

Mansfield Town picked up their first away win in the league this season with a hard fought 2-1 victory at Stevenage this afternoon. It was a crucial victory to lift the Stags 5 points outside the relegation zone and 3 points above today’s opponents. When you’ve been on such a run of results as the Stags were, 14 league and cup games without a win, when the wins finally come they are all the more sweet. And now, after 4 wins on the trot in all competitions, this was the sweetest of the lot I thought.

The Stags led 1-0 at half time, with John-Joe O’Toole heading home Stephen McLaughlin’s free kick from the left halfway inside the Stevenage half after 19 minutes. A good header from O’Toole and his second goal in successive games. But Mansfield had two large slices of luck in the first half as Jamie Reid, who was at Mansfield last season of course, hit the inside of the left post TWICE. Firstly after 14 minutes, Elliott List got away from Oli Hawkins down the right and his low cross was met on the volley by a brilliant flick by Reid. The ball hit the inside of the left post and rolled more or less along the goalline straight into Nathan Bishop’s arms. Then on 45+4 minutes, McLaughlin headed away a long ball forward from the halfway line, Reid chested the ball forward, and on the half-volley from 16 yards fired against the inside of the left post again, the ball running almost along the goalline again and away. Two excellent efforts from Reid who was so unlucky.

The Stags had other chances in the first half as Hawkins volleyed over the bar from 12 yards following a corner after 17 minutes, George Maris brought a great save from the keeper with a shot from 15 yards after 44 minutes. And Rhys Oates really should have scored after 37 minutes. McLaughlin lifted a long ball over the top, Terence Vancooten missed it, Oates got into the area 1-on-1 with the keeper and fired a yard wide of the left post from 15 yards. Oates was challenged by Vancooten a split second after he shot and I don’t think it affected his shot. It was great play from Oates to get into that position, but having got there, he should have scored.

Stevenage equalised after 55 minutes. A corner from the right from Arthur Read was beyond the far post, and Scott Cuthbert was completely unmarked to head into the left corner of the net. It was poor marking and Hawkins was the player at fault losing Cuthbert.

The Stags regained the lead after 65 minutes with a terrific goal. Stephen Quinn crossed from the left. It was deep and over Charsley. Charsley retrieved it and did well to play inside to Ryan Stirk. Stirk’s first touch was brilliant to get past Jake Taylor on the right inside the area. He then took a touch on his left foot to create an angle to curl the ball wide of defender Cuthbert and past the keeper into the left corner of the net from 12 yards. It was a superb finish, with great skill and wonderful composure, for Stirk’s first goal for Mansfield. Stirk had only been on as substitute for 12 minutes. He slid on his knees to celebrate in front of the 535 travelling Stags fans. It was a wonderful moment.

Stevenage went close to equalising with three shots from long range. After 67 minutes, Nathan Bishop parried away Arthur Read’s shot from 30 yards. After 77 minutes, Arthur Read curled a shot just wide of the left post from 25 yards. And finally after 81 minutes Bishop made a brilliant save tipping a shot from Jake Reeves from 22 yards over the bar.

The Stags wound the clock down mostly very well with substitute Tyrese Sinclair winning three free kicks on the break and good game management.

The Stags have generally not had the rub of the green this season in my opinion, but the luck turned today with those two shots from Jamie Reid against the inside of the post.

Great celebrations at the end, as the players were able to celebrate with the fans. A word on the Stags fans. They provided superb support for their side yet again and were rewarded with this important win.

An update on injuries from Nigel Clough after the game. Danny Johnson was missing from the squad today, Clough explained: "When he got his hat trick on Tuesday night, the goallie just caught him. He's had a scan and he's nicked an ankle ligament. We're hoping he'll only be out for 3-4 weeks, best case scenario."
And then on the three players who had to come off at Stevenage, Oates, Lapslie and Maris, Clough said: “Rhys Oates, groin (injury) very similar to last week; George Lapslie, shoulder, don't know yet how serious that is; and George Maris was his ankle in a blocked tackle. I don’t know if those three players will make next week.”

No midweek game for the Stags this week. The U23 side play away to Leeds United (at York City’s new ground) on Monday night. It looks as though Leeds live stream all their U23 games, though it may be behind a subscription wall. Then the Stags are at home to Scunthorpe next Saturday.



Stevenage 1-2 Mansfield Town
Cuthbert (55'minutes)
O'Toole (19'minutes), Stirk (65'minutes)

Read (55'minutes)
McLaughlin (19'minutes), Charsley (65'minutes)

Match report supplied by PA Media.

Ryan Stirk's first Mansfield goal secured the struggling Stags their first league away win of the season with a 2-1 victory over Stevenage.

Nigel Clough's side made it four wins on the spin in all competitions for the first time in four years.

Alex Revell's hosts twice hit the woodwork as Boro's defeat made it six league games without a win.

Stevenage forward Jamie Reid saw an early effort hit the inside of the post before John-Joe O'Toole headed Mansfield in front from Stephen McLaughlin's fine free-kick after only 19 minutes.

Stags striker Ryan Oates squandered a great one-on-one chance before half-time before Reid was again denied by the furniture deep in first-half stoppage time.

Stevenage skipper Scott Cuthbert levelled in the 55th minute when he nodded Arthur Read's corner home at the back post but Birmingham loanee Stirk put the visitors back in front 10 minutes later.

Nathan Bishop secured the three points for Mansfield with a fine sprawling save to keep out Jake Reeves late on.

Match Stats
Home Team Stevenage Away Team Mansfield
Possession Home 55% Away 45%
Shots Home 12 Away 12
Shots on Target Home 4 Away 4
Corners Home 5 Away 6
Fouls Home 14 Away 14


Sub Ryan Stirk seals another win for Mansfield Town at Stevenage
chad.co.uk, By Neil Goulding (Agency), Saturday 13th November 2021

Valiant Mansfield Town secured a fourth straight win for the first time in four years in this afternoon's 2-1 victory at Stevenage, writes Neil Goulding.

Sub Ryan Stirk’s first goal for the club ensured a fine afternoon's work went rewarded at the Lamex.

The sorry Stags had gone a dismal 14 games without a win before getting back on track against Tranmere at the end of October.

But John-Joe O’Toole put the visitors on their way with his second goal in as many appearances.


Captain Scott Cuthbert levelled after the break before Stirk’s strike secured Nigel Clough’s side a first away league win of the current campaign.

Stags’ boss Clough named an unchanged side after their impressive FA Cup victory over League One Sunderland last weekend.

The hosts came agonisingly close to an early opener as ex-Stag Jamie Reid saw his effort come back off the inside of the post.

Clough’s charges threatened when Oli Hawkins fired over the bar.

And that was the warning shot as O’Toole headed home Stephen McLaughin’s pinpoint free-kick to give Town the lead after 19 minutes.

Down the other end, Elliott List’s glancing header failed to trouble Nathan Bishop.

Stags’ striker Ryan Oates wasted a glorious one-on-one chance to put the visitors two up nine minutes before half-time.

The hosts were frustrated by the furniture for a second time as Reid once again hit the post deep in first-half stoppage time.

Boro battled back after the break as unmarked home skipper Scott Cuthbert headed home Arthur Read’s corner at the back post.

But Stirk reclaimed the visitors' lead with a fine finish just after the hour mark, curling home across the keeper after making space in the right of the box.

Jake Taylor threatened for Alex Revell’s side as he fired wide of the mark.

Stags’ stopper Bishop, who made several good stops, ensured the away side travelled back with all three points with a sensational diving save with eight minutes to go.

Stags still had to withstand seven minutes of stoppage time before heading home with a welcome three points in the bank.

STEVENAGE: Smith, Wildin, Vancooten, Cuthbert, Melbourne, Barry (Lines, 63), Read, Taylor, Reeves, List, Reid (Norris, 70). SUBS NOT USED: Anang, Coker, Prosser, Daly, Osborne.

STAGS: Bishop, Hewitt, O'Toole, Hawkins, McLaughlin, Maris (Rawson, 79), O. Clarke, Charsley, Lapslie (Stirk, 54), Quinn, Oates (Sinclair, 63). SUBS NOT USED: Gale, Forrester, Shelvey, Bowery.

REFEREE: Chris Sarginson.


Report: Stevenage 1-2 Mansfield Town

Scott Cuthbert header not enough as goals from O’toole and Stirk result in a frustrating afternoon at The Lamex for Stevenage…

Alex Revell named two changes from Tuesday’s victory against Cambridge United in the Papa John’s Trophy as Scott Cuthbert and Arthur Read returned to the starting line-up.

Prior to the game, both teams as well as supporters, observed a minute’s silence to show their respect for Remembrance day.

Seven minutes in, Luther James-Wildin won possession of the ball on the right-hand side before quickly playing in a dangerous low-driven cross into the area. The ball was eventually cleared, denying Boro the first goal of the game.


Shortly after, Stevenage earned themselves, without doubt, the best chance of the game so far as Elliott List found plenty of space on the right before delivering a perfect ball to Jamie Reid whose first-time effort deflected off the post.

The game was very open for both sides within the first fifteen minutes as, from Mansfield’s first corner of the game, the ball fell to Oliver Hawkins who blasted over.

Unfortunately for Alex Revell’s men, this sparked a flame for The Stags as, after eighteen minutes, John-Joe O’toole managed to tuck the ball past Adam Smith to put the visitors ahead.

Around the half-hour mark, there was a brief stoppage in play after Elliott List took a knock to the back of the head and required treatment. The forward was soon able to return to the pitch and play was resumed.

Six minutes later, a long ball was sent over everyone and fell to the feet of Rhys Oates. The Stags striker had the perfect chance to double the lead but his effort drifted inches past the post.

Another big Mansfield chance came just before half time as a scramble in the Stevenage area resulted in the ball falling to George Maris whose deflected effort went just past the post.

The final chance of the half came seconds before the referee’s whistle as Jamie Reid’s shot from twelve yards out hit the post for the second time of the game, ending an extremely frustrating half for Stevenage.

Ten minutes into the second half, Stevenage earned themselves a corner. Arthur Read whipped the ball in perfectly to Scott Cuthbert who nodded home with no mistake to get the equaliser for Boro and his first goal of the season.

Ten minutes after Cuthbert’s equaliser, Mansfield earned themselves a chance from nothing as Ryan Stirk picked up the ball in the Stevenage area and calmly placed the ball past Adam Smith to put the visitors ahead for the second time.

Boro almost instantly replied as Arthur Read attempted a long-range effort, but Nathan Bishop did well to keep the ball from going in. Read tried from range again ten minutes later but his shot went just wide of the post.

On the eightieth minute, it was Jake Reeves’ turn to take aim from distance, but Nathan Bishop flew across his goal to deny the Stevenage equaliser.

The Fourth Official revealed that there would be seven additional minutes remaining of the second half. Stevenage found themselves trying absolutely everything in their power to get that crucial equaliser whilst The Stags looked to wind down the clock.

Despite even Adam Smith making his way into the box for a last-minute free-kick, Boro couldn’t quite get the goal they needed as the referee blew his whistle to end a disappointing afternoon for Stevenage.

Attendance was 2946 with 535 away supporters.