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Archived News from January 2018

5th January 2018 23:04

English Football League - Sky Bet League Two
Mansfield Town 3 - 1 Carlisle United
Hemmings 9, 75, Rhys Bennett 31. Devitt pen 67
Attendance: 3632 (320 from Carlisle)

Date: 1 January 2018

Martin Shaw at the One Call Stadium, Field Mill

Mansfield Town continued their good run with a 3-1 win over Carlisle United at the One Call Stadium this afternoon. The win made it a very happy New Year for the Stags and a fantastic festive period with 10 points from 4 games that has propelled them into the play-off zone and just one point behind third place. Indeed had Coventry not beaten the hapless Chesterfield, the Stags would be level on points with third place. Every cloud has a silver lining I suppose. Mansfield have now lost just once in the last 18 games in all competitions. The Stags were off to a fast start with CJ Hamilton setting the scene on a dynamic personal display winning a corner after just 13 seconds. It was Carlisle who had the best early chance through with Tom Miller firing wide from an unmarked position. The Stags were gifted the lead on 9 minutes. Danny Grainger, so often impressive against the Stags in the past, left a backpass to his keeper short from the edge of the box, Kane Hemmings anticipated it superbly and nipped in to intercept, taking the ball around the keeper and sliding home from a tight angle on the right. A real goalpoacher’s goal from Hemmings. More poor defending from Carlisle assisted Mansfield in doubling the lead on 31 minutes. A high ball into the area from Alex MacDonald was fluffed by Tom Miller, Hemmings laid a clever ball forward to the byline for Hamilton who pulled back to Lee Angol. Angol used the outside of his right foot to flick the ball over the keeper from an angle on the left, the keeper could only fingertip the ball up towards the right corner of the net where Rhys Bennett knocked it over the line from a yard out. Great skill from Angol again, after his wonderful goal at Wycombe on Saturday. Our pitchside video footage confirms the ball was still a yard out when Bennett knocked it in. Carlisle defenders appealed for offside but again the pitchside footage shows that Bennett came from an onside position. An impressive first half from the Stags who went into the break with a two goal lead for the first time in any game this season. The Stags nearly made it 3-0 on 65 minutes in a great move forward with Jacob Mellis finding Angol who laid a superb ball forward into the path of Hamilton who powered into the area and saw his shot saved by the keeper. Within two minutes, Carlisle were back in the game as Carlisle sub Richie Bennett went down in the area to win a penalty. Richie Bennett was heading towards the byline as Conrad Logan came out of his goal, and Richie Bennett went down. From my position in the West Stand there seemed to be no contact. The view from the main TV camera on the Bishop Street side is inconclusive as to whether Richie Bennett was touched. Our pitchside video footage, from the far end, is unfortunately obscured by three players in the way. Jamie Devitt buried the resulting penalty into the bottom left corner. A minute later Carlisle were nearly level, a corner from the left by Devitt, and former Crystal Palace and QPR defender Clint Hill sent a header just wide of the right post. Carlisle went even closer to equalising on 73 minutes in an incredible escape for the Stags. Hallam Hope, Carlisle’s best footballer in my opinion and surprisingly only on as substitute, put in a brilliant cross from the left, Sam Cosgrove glanced a header against the right post, the ball came out to Richie Bennett, 4 yards out from the centre of the net, completely unmarked, who astonishingly sent the ball against the bar when it was surely easier to score. In a moment of pure karma, Logan, who had clearly been upset thinking that Richie Bennett had dived for the penalty, patted the striker’s head to console him on the miss of the season. Within two minutes, Mansfield had re-established the two goal lead. Alfie Potter put in a superb low cross from the right across the edge of the six-yard box and Hemmings swept into the net, getting to the ball before the keeper and Tom Miller. Hemmings could have had a hat-trick on 86 minutes as he superbly controlled a high ball forward from MacDonald on the edge of the area and fired a low shot which was saved low by the keeper to his right. Another great win and real momentum now for the Stags as we take a break for the third round of the FA Cup, and a trip to Cardiff City Stadium, also home of the Wales national side, next Saturday. Plenty of impressive performances today, with Kane Hemmings outstanding up front, not just with his two well-taken goals, but his all-round play, Lee Angol played very well again alongside him putting himself about, Hamilton provided pace and flair down the left wing and often linked well with Hemmings and Angol, Potter was classy on the right wing, and Mellis and MacDonald impressed in the middle.



Mansfield Town close in on top three with win over Carlisle United
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Monday 01 January 2018

Mansfield Town made it a very happy New Year with an exciting 3-1 home victory over Carlisle United that saw them leap back into the top seven play-off spots. That also made it only one defeat in 18 games for the in-form Stags. But it was far from a comfortable victory for Steve Evans’ men against a never-say-die Carlisle who had their chances to take something back to Cumbria. In the end it was a brace from Kane Hemmings plus one for Rhys Bennett that sealed the points. But United missed a great chance just before the opening goal and, at 2-1 down after netting a penalty, rattled the home woodwork twice in quick succession before Hemmings sealed it soon afterwards. Mansfield had skipper Zander Diamond and top scorer Danny Rose ruled out through injury. The Stags, who won 2-1 at Wycombe Wanderers on Saturday, despite a virus in the camp, saw Rose and Diamond go off in the first 20 minutes at Adams Park. Rose had a hip injury but should be fine for the weekend FA Cup trip to Cardiff City, as should Diamond, who was flattened by a ball to the face from a fierce free kick. Lee Angol, who had scored twice in the last two games, came in up front for Rose while Mal Benning replaced Diamond in a defence that reverted back to a four after boss Steve Evans played three at the back on Saturday. The other change came in goal where Conrad Logan, fit again after the virus, returned in place of an unlucky Bobby Olejnik, who had a fine game at Wycombe. Hayden White was still not 100 per cent from the illness but was named on the bench, but Johnny Hunt and Jimmy Spencer were still too ill to be considered. Stags were up against a Carlisle side managed by former Mansfield boss Keith Curle and including ex-Stags winger Reggie Lambe. The home side began well, Hamilton forcing a corner within the first 20 seconds and Angol heading Potter’s flag kick goalwards, though it was an easy take for the keeper. A second corner on four minutes saw MacDonald head wide. Then MacDonald bent a tame shot at goal from distance soon after. However, the visitors should have been ahead on seven minutes. Danny Grainger crossed long from the left and poor marking left Tom Miller all alone on the far side, seven yards from goal, only to sidefoot wide. But Mansfield were gifted a ninth minute opener from a suicidal backpass by Grainger. Hemmings was onto it like lightning and went wide of keeper Bonham to his right before coolly steering in from a tight angle. Miller had a shot blocked for the visitors on 15 minutes when a long throw fell for him in the box. A fantastic burst of pace down the left by Hamilton on 20 minutes saw him get to the left by-line and cross low, Bonham just there to smother before Hemmings could appy the finishing touch. Benning sent a rising shot over soon afterwards. Another spell of Carlisle pressure ended with Jones lashing wide from outside the box. But Mansfield stormed 2-0 ahead on 30 minutes after Miller missed his clearance at the far post. Hamilton took control and crossed to the near post where Angol’s goalbound touch was superbly clawed out from under the bar by Bonham only to see Bennett turn it over the line from point blank range. Angol was only just wide with a header from a MacDonald cross on the restart as Mansfield looked to press home their advantage. Then Hemmings was only just over with his close range header from Potter’s cross after a great flick from Angol. There was a flare-up between Lambe and Mellis on 44 minutes after the Carlisle man went in strongly, but the cards stayed in the referee’s pocket and Stags went in 2-0 to the good. Angol was booked on 51 minutes for leaving a foot in as Liddle went to clear the ball. Logan was tested for the first time on 55 minutes as Lambe shot low from 20 yards, but the keeper was safely there. Stags began to pile on the pressure, but a Devitt corner for Carlisle on 62 minutes saw Miller head over at the far post in a brief respite for the Cumbrians. On 65 minutes a fast break by Mansfield saw Mellis feed Angol to set up Hamilton for a firm, low shot that Bonham was able to parry. But United were handed a lifeline on 67 minutes as sub Bennett won a penalty as he fractionally beat Logan to a through ball and was clattered. Up stepped Devitt to tuck the ball inside the left post. Within seconds Carlisle won a corner from which Hill headed narrowly wide. A great move on 72 minutes saw Benning race at goal, play a one-two with Angol and fire just over. The game swung on two crucial incidents. United twice hit the woodwork on 73 minutes as Hope crossed from the left, Cosgrove saw his glancing header come back off the angle and somehow Bennett sent a follow-up against the woodwork when it looked easier to score. Within two minutes Stags were 3-1 ahead as Potter crossed low from the right and Hemmings turned it home with his heel from close range. Immediately Jones forced Logan to save his low shot and Benning made an important clearance after a scramble as plucky United refused to give in. O’Sullivan was booked on 85 minutes for bringing down Hamilton in full flight. From the free kick, Hemmings forced Bonham down for a save as he tried for his hat-trick. In added time White and Bennett were booked for a clash as United pressed to the end of a superb game of football.

STAGS: Logan; Anderson, Pearce, Bennett, Benning; Potter (White 79), MacDonald, Mellis (Atkinson 83), Hamilton; Angol (Thomas 88), Hemmings. Subs: Olejnik, Digby, Sterling-James, Butcher.

CARLISLE: Bonham, Tom Miller, Grainger (Hope HT), Liddle, Parkes, Jones, Devitt, Cosgrove, Lambe (O’Sullivan 79), Shaun Miller (Bennett HT), Hill. Subs: Nabbi, Ellis, Brown, Bacon.

REFEREE: Darren Drysdale of Lincolnshire.

ATTENDANCE: 3,632 (320 away).


Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/mansfield-town-close-in-on-top-three-with-win-over-carlisle-united-1-8935087


LOMAS ON STAGS: ‘Boo boys’ beggar belief as Stags fly high
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Tuesday 02 January 2018

As Mansfield Town soar to within a single point of the top three automatic promotion spots, it has been heartening to see some of the sensible majority hit back at the unreasonable few on social media. It is incredible that, given where the side are, Steve Evans and Paul Raynor are still under fire from a small section of ‘fans’. Let’s make this clear - it is a tiny number and it is not just grumblings or football banter. It is venomous and has been aimed directly at the pair and at least one family member in the stand too. What is it with modern football that people think they have the right to go that far just because they pay admission fees? Let’s make this clear now. Stags will never be perfect this season. There, I’ve said it. This is League Two football and players are at that level for a reason. If you want to watch Barcelona book a trip to Spain. But if you want to see a manager and a set of honest, talented players busting a gut for your home town club then now is a good time to get down the One Call Stadium. This is a side that, amazingly, have now only lost once in 18 games and are firmly in the hunt for automatic promotion among some far bigger clubs than Mansfield Town. Yet, at 2-0 up against Carlisle on Monday, but having conceded a penalty that was never a penalty when you see the replay, Raynor was again given a torrent of personal abuse on the bench just because the opposition had pulled one back. It simply beggars belief. Once again you could see a manager of Evans’ vast experience seriously rattled by it after the game - and this is man who has thickened skin after seasons of ‘normal’ football abuse/banter, which we all know and love as part of the game and which he is perfectly ‘happy’ to absorb. Few fans dared believe names as big as Evans and Raynor would take the job when Adam Murray had gone and left Stags in the mire 14 months ago. But they agreed to come, John Radford backed their judgement on players financially and it takes one glance at the table to see how well that has gone. But some so-called supporters seem to be reading their paper upside down. These people may pay their money but the ground would be a much better place without them.?So let’s hope they get so upset with their side doing so well that they drift off to find something else to do on Saturday afternoons. To the rest of you, a very Happy New Year - it may not be perfect, but it’s Mansfield and it’s currently very successful. Whether a second defeat in 19 outings can be avoided at Championship club Cardiff City on Saturday is a major doubt. Stags go into it as major underdogs, despite four successive defeats for Neil Warnock’s men. Knowing the wily Warnock, he won’t allow whatever Bluebirds XI he puts out to take their eye off things for a moment against lesser opposition. But if they do, you never know. One thing you can be sure of. If Stags do go out of the competition there will be a section of supporters who will almost delight in it and be ready to remind the Stags bench how poor they are when return to the One Call Stadium on 20th January and that is very sad.

Read more at: https://www.hucknalldispatch.co.uk/sport/football/lomas-on-stags-boo-boys-beggar-belief-as-stags-fly-high-1-8936315


Mansfield Town show their power on a Blue New Year’s Day for Carlisle United

The new year began in disappointing fashion for Carlisle United who fell to a 3-1 defeat at Mansfield Town.

Steve Evans’ men led 2-0 at half-time. Kane Hemmings scored the first goal of 2018 at the One Call Stadium early on before Rhys Bennett doubled the Stags’ advantage on the half-hour mark.

Carlisle boss Keith Curle made a double change at half-time and they found a way back into the contest when Jamie Devitt scored a penalty after Richie Bennett had been fouled.

Bennett and Sam Cosgrove both missed great chances to level the scores in quick succession and striker Hemmings then scored his second goal of the game to seal the win.


The hosts were straight on the attack from kick-off, winning an early corner as they looked to set the early tempo. Lee Angol’s header from the set-piece did not seriously test United keeper Jack Bonham, though, the tempo for the first half had been set.

With five minutes on the clock another Mansfield corner, this time from the right, saw Alex MacDonald head wide an Alfie Potter delivery.

But two minutes later away captain Danny Grainger delivered from the left and found Tom Miller inside the penalty area, only for the full-back to steer wide of Conrad Logan’s left-hand post from an excellent position with undoubtedly the Blues’ best chance of the half.

And the Stags took full advantage of that miss and took the lead moments later. Cumbrian Grainger tried to find Bonham, although his back-pass was cut out by Hemmings who rounded Bonham and slotted home.

As United looked to hit back, Shaun Miller, part of the new-look frontline alongside surprise inclusion Cosgrove, and former Stags man Reggie Lambe were looking particularly threatening.

Man-of-the-match Hemmings then burst down the left on 20 minutes as he looked to turn provider, although Brentford loanee Bonham did just enough to thwart Angol.

At the other end, a short corner routine between Devitt and Bermudian Lambe presented Grainger with a shooting opportunity. But the Carlisle captain fired miles over Mansfield goalkeeper Logan’s crossbar on 25 minutes.

Two minutes later, a poor pass out of defence by Jacob Mellis presented Mike Jones with an opening, around 20 yards from goal. However, the former Oldham man - set to play against one of his former clubs in Sheffield Wednesday in the FA Cup on Saturday - also couldn’t hit the target.

Evans’ pre-season title favourites then doubled their advantage on the half-hour mark. A mistake from Tom Miller allowed the Stags to cross. Bonham did superbly to keep out Angol’s initial header, although defender Rhys Bennett was on hand to slot home his second of the season from close-range.

Four minutes before the break, Potter again drove down the right and crossed for Hemmings, with the former Rangers striker powering his header narrowly over.

Ahead of the match, United manager Curle had said he was looking forward to taking on Mansfield manager Evans and his no.2 Paul Raynor. But it was certainly the Stags pair who were the happier of the two managerial camps at half-time, with ex-Stags boss Curle engaging in a long conversation with referee Darren Drysdale as the sides headed off the pitch.

It came as little surprise that Curle opted to make a double substitution at half-time. Hallam Hope and Richie Bennett coming on for Grainger and Shaun Miller. Those changes also saw a switch in formation with Tom Parkes moving to left-back and Hope joining the action on the left wing, while Irish midfielder Devitt moved into a more central position.

The changes certainly made an impact for United, with joint top scorer Hope looking particularly threatening on the left.

But the Cumbrians still were yet to create a clear-cut chance since Tom Miller’s early miss as Lambe peppered Logan’s gloves on the 55th minute.

With both sides struggling to create opportunities after the restart and the Stags looking comfortable, CJ Hamilton could not beat Bonham on 65 minutes.

Moments later, Carlisle were handed a route back into the match. The hosts’ goalkeeper, Logan, was adjudged to have fouled sub Bennett by referee Mr Drysdale. Devitt slotted home from the spot to cut the deficit in half.

As Mansfield looked to restore their two-goal cushion, Mellis fired over from just outside the box.

A minute later, United had two golden opportunities to level in the rain. Firstly, Cosgrove glanced a Hope left-wing cross against Logan’s left-hand post before Bennett hit the bar with the rebound from close-range.

Not for the first time in the game, the Stags cashed in on a bad Carlisle miss as Hemmings steered home Potter’s delivery to make it 3-1 to give Mansfield’s play-off bid another boost and United’s another significant dent.

John O’Sullivan was the next player Curle threw into the fray as Lambe came off against his old club to a chorus of boos.

Hemmings could have claimed his hat-trick five minutes from time, though, his shot was blocked by Bonham.

But, this time, United could not force their way back into the contest.

Midfield duo Kelvin Etuhu and Luke Joyce were not involved in the Blues squad, with the latter instead sent to scout Carlisle’s FA Cup opponents Sheffield Wednesday in action in their 3-0 defeat to Burton.

Full-back James Brown was not used in the final match of his current half-season loan.

Carlisle United: Bonham, T.Miller, Grainger (c) (Hope 45), Liddle, Parkes, Jones, Devitt, Cosgrove, Lambe (O’Sullivan 80), S.Miller (Bennett 45), Hill.

Carlisle unused sub: Bacon, Nabi, Ellis, Brown.

Mansfield Town: Logan, Bennett, Benning, Pearce (c), MacDonald, Mellis (Atkinson 82), Angol, Anderson, Potter (White 79), Hamilton, Hemmings (Thomas 83).

Mansfield unused subs: Olejnik, Digby, Sterling-James, Butcher.

Ref: Darren Drysdale

Assistants: Duncan Street and Joe Clark

Fourth official: Steven Rushton



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