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11th January 2022 0:22

The Emirates FA Cup - Round Three
Mansfield Town 2 - 3 Middlesbrough
Hawkins 66, Oates 85. Ikpeazu 4, Boyd-Munce 14, Hewitt OG 90+5
Attendance: 7,297 (approx 1700 from Middlesbrough)

Date: 8 January 2022


Martin Shaw at the One Call Stadium, Field Mill

Mansfield Town bowed of the FA Cup at the Third Round stage, beaten 3-2 by Championship side Middlesbrough at the One Call Stadium this lunchtime. It was a superb game that was a great advert for the competition in front of an overseas TV audience and the biggest crowd at home since the play-off semi-final against Newport.

The Stags started slowly and found themselves two goals down after just 14 minutes. Firstly powerful centre forward Uche Ikpeazu was too strong for Oli Hawkins and then Stephen McLaughlin, holding them both off, before unleashing a fantastic shot from 23 yards into the top left corner of the net. A stunning goal.

Middlesbrough scored a second goal after 14 minutes and it was a sloppy one from a Stags point of view. Following a throw-in on the right, Joe Gibson got to the byline and got past McLaughlin too easily before pulling back to Caolan Boyd-Munce who was left unmarked and he slammed a powerful low shot into the net from 9 yards.

The Stags could have been further behind by half time as Nathan Bishop made a good save tipping a deflected shot from Josh Coburn around the post, and then making a great save from Ikpeazu at point blank range.

Mansfield came into the game in the final 20 minutes of the first half as George Maris had three efforts, curling in a shot that was saved by keeper Joe Lumley diving to his left, then firing over the bar from 22 yards after a good run, and finally having another shot blocked when it was on target. Perhaps Mansfield’s best chance of the first half was a brilliant chipped cross from the right from John-Joe O’Toole which just evaded Rhys Oates as he stretched to try to turn it into the net.

Middlesbrough deservedly 2-0 ahead at the break. But Mansfield produced a stunning second half performance to get themselves right back into the game.

Several chances early in the half as Maris headed over the bar from a corner, Oates turned the ball goalwards after brilliant play from Ollie Clarke on the byline on the left but his effort was blocked, Quinn had a shot blocked for a corner, and then great play from Bowery with a clever pass to tee up Ollie Clarke who flicked an effort over the bar. That last chance was a really good one.

The fans were generating a great atmosphere, right behind their side. Oates had two headed chances within a minute, as first he headed wide from a great cross from McLaughlin, and then a great cross from Quinn which Oates headed over the bar.

The Stags deserved a goal back and got it after 66 minutes. Quinn chipped in another wonderful cross from the left and Hawkins, who had stayed up following a corner, rose above his marker to head down and into the net from 10 yards.

Danny Johnson was now on as substitute and he nearly had a chance after 73 minutes as Oates got away down the right and tried to pull the ball across to Johnson but a defender slid in and put it just past his own post.

A massive stroke of bad luck for the Stags after 80 minutes as a goal was wrongly disallowed. Oates made another good run forward to the edge of the area, he held off his marker to tee up Jason Law, also on as substitute. Law fired goalwards, low from 18 yards, the keeper partially saved it but it squirmed behind him and before he could retrieve it, Johnson was quickest to react and turn the loose ball into the empty net. The linesman put his flag up for offside. The TV footage shows that as Law shot, Johnson was not offside and timed his run to perfection as the defender marking him was motionless. Middlesbrough players slumped and then couldn’t believe their luck as the referee raised his flag. Such bad luck for Johnson and indeed for Law. Some will say this evened out the incident from the Hartlepool game where the visitors had an injury time goal ruled out for offside. The difference was that the Hartlepool effort was offside, this one wasn’t.

Undeterred, the Stags continued to push for an equaliser and sensationally got it after 85 minutes. Jason Law slid a magnificent ball forward from just inside the Boro half perfectly into the path of Oates who ran on to it, took it around the keeper, and slid it into the net for a calm, clinical and brilliant finish. The One Call Stadium was anything but calm with an incredible noise from the Stags fans.

It was anyone’s game now with neither side keen on the idea of extra-time on a heavy pitch. And 5 minutes into stoppage time, Boro got the winner to break the Stags’ hearts. The fresh legs of sub Isaiah Jones got him away from Hawkins on the right, to the byline and he put in a ball across the six-yard box. O’Toole slid in to clear it, it would have gone behind for a corner but it hit Elliott Hewitt and went into the net. Really unlucky you would have to say, nothing Hewitt could have done about it and O’Toole was unlucky his clearance didn’t go for a corner.

Seven minutes into stoppage time, the Stags should have had a free kick just outside the area on the right when Law was fouled, but the referee inexplicably waved play on. Then a minute later a half chance but Maris couldn’t get his shot away in the box.

Full time brought a standing ovation for the Stags for an outstanding second half performance. It was great that the Stags turned it on in front of a big crowd, but so disappointing of course to go out.

Lots of good performances in the Stags side especially Oates who gave Boro so many problems, Quinn who put in some wonderful crosses. Law also really impressed coming on as sub.

Boro manager Chris Wilder, Championship manager of the month for December, was full of praise for Mansfield after the game saying: “You've got to love the FA Cup though I didn't love it when it went to two each. It was looking like it would go to extra time. And it would have been deservedly so for them. I thought that would have been the least they deserved. I’ve got to say, we give an enormous amount of credit to Mansfield Town and the manager, the players and the supporters as well because it’s a difficult one for them when they go two-nil down but their team rallied and they rallied. I wasn't surprised they got back into it and they had some chances before that. We rode our luck through that period and we didn't defend the two goals very well. I’ve got to say, I think there are plenty of Championship clubs that would have been knocked out today here and I think that goes to show what we’re trying to build and create here. We want to see technical players, yeah, but sometimes you have to grind one out. We were up against a manager who’s got a history of cup upsets, a team that’s on a fabulous run, vocal home support."

So it’s back to the league for Mansfield. And plenty to be excited about and look forward to in the second half of the season, starting on Tuesday night as Swindon Town visit the One Call Stadium. If you’re not able to get to the game, you can watch it with us on iFollow Stags (note that kick off is 7.30pm).



Mansfield Town 2-3 Middlesbrough: Boro survive Stags fightback to progress
Hawkins (67'minutes), Oates (85'minutes)
Ikpeazu (4'minutes), Boyd-Munce (14'minutes), Hewitt (90'+5minutes og)
Quinn (67'minutes), Law (85'minutes)
Wood (4'minutes), Gibson (14'minutes)


Brilliant Mansfield give Middlesbrough huge FA Cup scare

Middlesbrough needed a 95th-minute winner as they survived a Mansfield fightback to progress in the FA Cup.

The Championship side raced into a 2-0 lead inside 15 minutes as Uche Ikpeazu found the top corner from 20 yards before Caolan Boyd-Munce fired home.

League Two Mansfield rallied after the break as Oli Hawkins headed in and Rhys Oates slotted home from a tight angle.

But Boro won the tie in stoppage time when John-Joe O'Toole could only turn Isaiah Jones' cross into his own net.

It was a horrible way for Stags boss Nigel Clough to see his side lose after such a brave fightback against the club where his father Brian made his name as a player.

But Boro could have been more than two goals clear at the break had Mansfield keeper Nathan Bishop not pulled off two stunning saves to keep out efforts from Josh Coburn and Ikpeazu.

Mansfield, who had won 10 of their 11 previous games, were a different side after the interval and created a host of chances as Oates saw a close-range volley at the far post cleared off the line by Lee Peltier, and also missed the target with two heading opportunities.

Ollie Clarke also scooped an effort over the bar from inside the box, while substitute Danny Johnson was flagged offside when he tapped in on the line after Boro keeper Joe Lumley spilled a shot.

Mansfield boss Nigel Clough told BBC Radio Nottingham:

"We should have made it through to the fourth round today. I'm very disappointed with the first 30 minutes, I didn't think we started the game and ultimately that's what's cost us going 2-0 down - but from that point on it was brilliant stuff.

"The message was get one goal back, don't concede again and stay in the game. If they had got a third at any time and gone 3-0 it would have been game over.

"But staying in the game at 2-0, you get one back and you hear the crowd's reaction, and then we scored a brilliant equaliser, but that's all to no avail again when you concede a poor goal in the 95th minute.

"We had more than enough chances to score more than the two goals. We've been playing well for a few weeks and there's a lot of encouragement. We gave Middlesbrough a good game and it was a cracking cup tie."

Middlesbrough boss Chris Wilder told BBC Tees:

"I thought we got right out of the blocks and I have to give enormous credit to Mansfield Town, their manager, players and supporters because it's difficult going 2-0 down, but their team rallied and I knew this was going to be a really difficult afternoon, and so it proved to be.

"The result is the main thing and we have got through a really tough tie.

"We can play better but they are on a great run. Any Championship team would have struggled today. We had a fight and struggled to get through but eventually we did."

Match Stats
Home Team Mansfield Away Team Middlesbrough
Possession Home 53% Away 47%
Shots Home 15 Away 11
Shots on Target Home 3 Away 4
Corners Home 8 Away 5
Fouls Home 14 Away 11


Heartbreak for Mansfield Town as Middlesbrough snatch last gasp win in thrilling FA Cup tie.
chad.co.uk, By John Lomas, Saturday 8th January 2022

Mansfield Town suffered last gasp heartbreak this afternoon when, after bravely fighting back from 2-0 down, were pipped 3-2 by Championship club Middlesbrough with a stoppage time John-Joe O'Toole own goal ending a thrilling FA Cup third round tie.

In-form Boro were 2-0 up inside 14 minutes and in total command.

But Stags raised their game after the break with a magnificent fightback that saw Oli Hawkins and Rhys Oates deservedly level the game only to see Boro steal it when O'Toole turned Isaiah Jones' low cross past Nathan Bishop.

Danny Johnson also had a goal ruled out for offside and Oates an effort cleared off the line as Boro struggled to contain a Stags side that had won 10 of their last 11 games.


The Stags side saw two changes from their last game on Boxing Day. Skipper Ollie Clarke and Stephen Quinn were fit again and replaced Farrend Rawson, who was out ill, and Jason Law, who dropped to the bench.

Boro made seven changes to their starting XI and gave debuts to new signing, Northern Ireland U21 international Caolan Boyd-Munce, who joined from Birmingham City this week, and Academy product Joe Gibson while William Kokolo made his full debut.

Stags started well and Stirk made a good run into the box on two minutes to get onto a throw and whip a low shot wide of the near post.

But Boro grabbed a fourth minute lead with a stunning goal by Ikpeazu.

Picking up the ball midway in the Mansfield half he fought off challenges from McLaughlin and Hawkins as he powered forward and then from 20 yards smashed a finish into the top left hand corner.

Quinn tried his luck from similar range three minutes later but was too high.

Boyd-Munce then marked his debut with Boro's second goal on 14 minutes.

From a throw on the right, Peltier was able to get to the by-line and stride forward before pulling a low pass back to Boyd-Munce, who stroked home a low finish.

He almost added another five minutes later, but saw his low shot deflect inches wide for a corner from which, when Stags failed to clear, Kokolo whipped a shot over.

Coburn also had a shot deflect inches wide from a scramble on 23 minutes as the visitors looked to further stretch their advantage as heavy rain poured down on the action and the pitch became more sodden.

On 26 minutes McLaughlin's free kick found O'Toole at the far post, but his header dropped wide of the far post.

Stags' first corner on 31 minutes was half-cleared and recycled back out to taker Maris, who cut inside and forced Lumley to dive to his left to keep out a curling finish.

Bamba was booked on 33 minutes for a tackle from behind on Maris.

Boro were then relieved to see no one able to turn home a curling cross from O'Toole from the right by-line that skidded across the face of the goal as the home side enjoyed their best spell of the afternoon so far.

IkPeazu was cautioned for persistent fouling on 37 minutes and a minute later Hewitt's name was added for hauling down Kokolo.

Maris might have pulled one back on 42 minutes when released into space down the centre by Oates, but his finish sailed over.

Boro almost netted a minute later when a low Kokolo cross reached Ikpeazu 10 yards from goal, but Bishop made a superb reaction save to keep out his first time finish.

Maris had a shot blocked as Stags went into the break with a mountain to climb.

Stags began the second half well and three minutes after the restart Oates won a corner which Quinn sent over and Hawkins flicked his header over the bar.

On 53 minutes a cross found Oates at the far post where he stabbed the ball goalwards and Peltier cleared off the line.

Stirk had a shot blocked as Stags kept up the pressure.

On 58 minutes Bowery played a tempting low ball in to Clarke, but the skipper somehow lifted the ball over the bar from inside the six yard box.

Oates again came close on 61 minutes, sending a diving header wide from a McLaughlin cross and a minute later he headed over from close range from Quinn's long cross before Stags made a double change.

Boro threatened for the first time all half on 63 minutes when sub Crooks fired a first time effort into the sidenetting.

But Stags were deservedly back in the contest on 67 minutes.

Quinn hung a fine cross over from the left and Hawkins powered a six yard header past Lumley.

O'Toole and Hawkins were added to the book for fouls soon after.

Howson slid in to cut out a dangerous Oates cross on a 73rd minute Stags break as the home side raised the noise levels.

On 80 minutes Stags thought they had levelled as Lumley let a tame Law shot slip past him and Johnson poked the loose ball home only to be ruled offside.

However Stags were level five minutes from time.

Law cut open the Boro defence with his pass down the centre and Oates raced away, rounded the keeper and slotted home.

Two Boro subs almost conjured up a winner on 87 minutes but Dijksteel somehow lifted a finish over from six yards with only the keeper to beat from Hernandez's cross.

Seven minutes were added in which Hewitt blocked a Jones finish.

But Stags were left heartbroken in the fifth added minute as Jones sent in a low cross after speeding down the right and, with Hernandez behind him, O'Toole slid the ball into his own net.

STAGS: Bishop, McLaughlin (Lapslie 61), Hewitt, Clarke (Johnson 61), Bowery, Maris, Hawkins, Quinn, Oates, Stirk (Law 72), O'Toole. SUBS NOT USED: Stech, Turner, Nartey, Charsley, Burke, Ward.

MIDDLESBROUGH: Lumley, Ikpeazu (Jones 77), Peltier, Wood, Howson, McNair, Bamba, Kokolo (Dijksteel 77), Coburn (Hernandez 62), Gibson (Crooks 58), Boyd-Munce (Tavernier 58). SUBS NOT USED: Daniels, Malley, Sykes.

REFEREE: Keith Stroud.