REPORT FROM CARLISLE SITES
Report from http://www.carlisleunited.co.uk
United's season came to an end as it started, in a 2-0 defeat, this time at the hands of Mansfield, a result that secures promotion for The Stags to Division Two.
Mansfield were good value for their two goal lead after dominating the entire first half as Carlisle United struggled to gather any momentum at all.
Mansfield showed their intentions from the start and on three minutes Wayne Corden went close with a curling effort after former Newcastle United and Bolton veteran Scott Sellars had put him through.
Then two minutes later came the goal for The Stags that settled their early nerves, Peter Keen having just tipped over a powerful effort from the giant Andy White was beaten by Wayne Corden from the resulting corner after rising unchallenged by the United defence.
Mansfield's movement and pace in the final third of the field were causing the United defenders all sorts of problems and it was that movement and pace that carved out an opportunity for Wayne Corden but his attempted lob luckily dropped onto the top of Peter Keen's net.
The home team continued to pour the pressure on the United goal and Peter Keen did well to hold onto a header from Andy White after good work by Wayne Corden on the right.
United's best chance of the half fell to Ian Stevens following a Stuart Bell free-kick but the veteran striker put his effort over the bar from only 4 yards out.
United were left rueing the miss by Stevens as Andy White doubled the score on the half hour mark when on-loan Adam Murray was allowed to rise unchallenged by the United defence and Andy White was on hand to fire Murray's chest down high into Peter Keen's net.
Perhaps though the two biggest cheers arrived not when Mansfield Town scored but when the news filtered through that Promotion rivals Cheltenham were getting beat 2-0, a result Mansfield will rely on to secure the final automatic promotion place.
Billy Barr made one change at half-time, Ian Stevens, playing what could prove to be his final game for The Blues as his contract expires in the summer, was replaced by Steve Halliday, another Brunton Park player whose contract expires in the summer.
The second half disappeared among a flurry of substitutions and wasted passes as both teams seemed to go through the motions.
Scott Sellars had a tame effort saved by Peter Keen on the hour mark and a minute later Adam Murray almost made it 3-0 when he rounded Peter Keen but the angle was against him as his finish flashed across the United goalmouth and substitute David Kelly put a late effort wide from Lee Williamson's throughball.
The final whistle was met with a good natured pitch invasion by the jubilant Mansfield fans celebrating their teams promotion reminisant of times past for Carlisle United.
United now look forward to another summer of uncertainty with most of the current squad out of contract and finances thin, fans could see a host of departures from Brunton Park and add to that the fact that the club currently managerless.
Star Man – Dave Rogers – Out with a bang in what could be his final game for the Blues
Latest | April 2002