STAGS BEATEN 3-2 AT OLDHAM
English Football League - Sky Bet League Two
Oldham Athletic 3 - 2 Mansfield Town
Nepomuceno 29, 67, Maouche 56. Walker 60, Bishop 76
Attendance: 6179 (1334 from Mansfield)
Date: 22 April 2019
Martin Shaw at Boundary Park
Mansfield Town were beaten 3-2 at Oldham Athletic this afternoon, a bitterly disappointing result as the Stags hang on to third place on goal difference from MK Dons who drew at home to Port Vale. Meanwhile Bury beat Northampton to leapfrog the Stags into second place, with just two games left. After a first half in which the Stags were lacking in quality having got into several good positions but failed to deliver good crosses, Oldham led 1-0 with a goal on 29 minutes as Nepomuceno got goalside of Gethin Jones to run on to a defence-splitting pass from Maouche and fire past Conrad Logan from 13 yards.
If the first half was average, the second half was thrilling. Oldham doubled their lead after 56 minutes. Lang got away from Mal Benning on the right, and laid back to Sylla, whose cross was headed away by Jones but only straight to Nepomuceno whose powerful shot was blocked by Matt Preston and fell for Maouche to turn and fire into the net from 6 yards. Mansfield immediately switched to an ultra-attacking 4-3-3 formation and it paid dividends straight away as Jacob Mellis laid a wonderful ball into the path of Tyler Walker who slammed a low shot through the keeper’s legs from 17 yards for his 25th goal of the season. But Oldham regained their two-goal advantage after 67 minutes as Hamer’s long throw was headed out by Preston straight to Nepomuceno on the edge of the area, he took aim and blasted a spectacular shot into the top left corner of the net. The Stags had to commit men forward and nearly conceded a fourth goal after 71 minutes as Maouche split the defence again to find Lang who was through 1-on-1 with Logan but Logan was out superbly to save. The Stags pulled a goal back to make it 3-2 after 76 minutes. Benning’s corner was headed, it ricocheted fortunately off Hamilton to Bishop who controlled well, turned superbly and sent a low shot bobbling into the bottom right corner of the net. With the Stags leaving spaces at the back, O’Grady went close to extending Oldham’s lead, and at the other end, Walker fired just over the bar after another great ball from Mellis.
Then huge controversy and heartbreak for the Stags in the 6th minute of stoppage time. Walker laid off to Mellis on the edge of the area, Mellis took aim and sent a fine low shot against the inside of the left post. The ball rebounded out and Danny Rose who did brilliantly to acrobatically turn the ball into the empty net. But the linesman’s flag was up against Rose. TV replays on the live Spy Sports coverage show that Rose was level with the defender as Mellis took aim, in my opinion, and also in the opinion of the Sky Sports commentators. A bad call from the officials that was so costly for Mansfield. A draw would have signalled a great comeback from the Stags and a vital point in a game in which we didn’t play very well. But it wasn’t to be.
On to next Saturday then. A perfect day for the Stags of course would be victory over Stevenage coupled with an MK Dons defeat at play-off chasing Colchester. That would leave Mansfield 3 points ahead of MK Dons with a better goal difference by at least 9 goals, and on the verge of promotion. Stevenage themselves are chasing a play-off spot. A big performance is needed from Mansfield.
Oldham, whose players did a lap of honour at the end of the game, have given themselves a chance of reaching the play-offs with this win and a sixth game without defeat. They are 4 points behind 7th place with a game in hand and a better goal difference.
Mansfield were not surprisingly unchanged from the terrific 4-0 win over Morecambe on Good Friday. The bench was also unchanged.
Oldham included former Stags loanee Alex Iacovitti in defence. Giles Coke, who played for the Stags more than a decade ago, was an unused sub for Oldham.
It was a glorious warm sunny day in Oldham. Normally it rains when the Stags come here! Not that Mansfield have had many games here in recent years. In fact only a handful since the last win here which was all the way back in 1978.
After not having a game live on Sky Sports for 13 years, this was the second one in a month!
What a noise from the Stags fans before kick off and in the early stages of the game. It was immense. I think this ground is good for acoustics. The home fans were loud too. It was a wonderful atmosphere.
Oldham had the ball in the net after 5 minutes but the flag had long since been up. Maouche played forward to Lang who carried on long after the flag was up and knocked into the net.
In a low key start to the game despite the atmosphere created by the fans, the first chance of the game for either side didn’t come until 17 minutes. Jones
FULL REPORT IN THE MATCH CENTRE
Mansfield Town promotion hopes hit after defeat at Oldham
chad.co.uk, SPORTS REPORTER, Monday 22 April 2019
Gevaro Nepomuceno bagged a brace with Mohammed Maouche grabbing the other to down the Stags and end their four-game unbeaten run.
Tyler Walker and Neal Bishop both found the back of the net in the second-half but it wasn’t enough to steal a vital point.
Both sides started slowly as they found their feet.
The Stags had the chance to make the brighter start when Tyler Walker lashed wide from outside the box.
Oldham took the lead in the 29th minute through Nepomuceno.
Maouche expertly found the winger Nepomuceno, who controlled well on the run before firing home the opener.
The Stags searched hard for an equaliser before the break without breaking down the hosts.
Jacob Mellis’ probing cross was cleared before Malvind Benning blasted wide.
David Flitcroft’s charges continued to pile on the pressure with CJ Hamilton hitting over the bar and Ryan Sweeney nodding off target.
The second came in unfortunate circumstances as a game of pinball in the Stags’ box fell to Maouche to fire home in the 56th minute.
On the hour, Mellis played in Walker whose effort rolled through Daniel Iversen’s leg.
But the hosts reestablished their two-goal cushion as Nepomuceno smashed past Conrad Logan after a poor clearance.
Logan kept the Stags in the game by keeping out Callum Lang with a fine save.
bishop kept the game alive with 14 minutes left with a great turn and finish.
With ten minutes to go Mellis and Walker linked up well with the latter smashing over the bar.
Danny Rose thought he had levelled at 3-3 to earn a precious point that would have been enough to take the Stags into second place in the race for automatic promotion.
Rose reacted first to turn in the rebound after Jacob Mellis hit the post. But the Stags’ celebrations were cut short by the linesman’s offside flag.
Six minutes into stoppage time Mellis was agonisingly denied by the post.
REPORT: Latics Involved In A Five-Goal Thriller
Oldham Athletic 3-2 Mansfield Town
Goals from Nepomuceno (2) and Maouche against promotion chasing Mansfield make it six games unbeaten for Pete Wild as Head Coach.
Making two changes, Sylla and O'Grady were brought in for Afolayan and the injured Baxter.
Latics started the game well controlling possession and looking the more likely to create an opening in the first ten minutes.
As Mansfield continued to take their time to get into the tie, Maouche unleashed the first meaningful effort on the 19th minute. His curling effort going close to the top left-hand corner after creating an opening on the right.
A couple of minutes later and Iacovitti twisting and turning on the left beat his man and with his weaker right foot curled a low effort across goal that went wide of Logan's post.
As both sides went through the motions, it was Oldham who got Boundary Park rocking with Nepomuceno getting on the score sheet on the half-hour mark.
Getting the ball in the Mansfield box after a low cross by Maouche on the right, the Curacao international took one touch to settle himself before stroking the ball into the Stags' net.
The visitors looked for a quick response as the pressure was firmly on but Mansfield couldn't create that all important clean-cut chance.
Their first came on the 36th minute when Sweeney five yards out headed high and wide at the near post after a corner from the right.
But it was Latics who went in at the break one up.
Mansfield had the first chance of the second-half but as the ball returned into the Oldham penalty area Iversen claimed the effort to relive the pressure.
With a bumper crowd on a sunny Easter Monday Oldham responded with a number of threatening attacks, the final crucial through ball the missing ingredient though.
The excitement grew with good inventful play but as Missilou tried to get the cross in Logan jumped on the loose ball to give his side some time to recover.
It wouldn't last long though as Maouche got on the scoresheet on the 55th minute, turning the ball home from close range on the turn in front of Lang.
The chance fell fortunately to the Frenchman after a Nepomuceno shot was blocked in the box following some fast attacking play on both wings.
The tension grew once more when the Stags pulled a goal back through Walker, finishing well after putting it through Iversen's legs once the Oldham defence was cut open on the hour mark from a Mellis pass.
Latics once more responded in delightful fashion seven minutes later. Nepomunceno getting his second with a thumping effort that broke the top left corner once it left his left foot.
A couple of minutes passed before Oldham nearly got their fourth of the afternoon in an entertaining end-to-end fixture.
But the Mansfield keeper stayed big as Lang found time and space on the right before collecting the ball and driving into the box as his shot hit Logan before the danger was cleared.
Boundary Park was bouncing as the game entered the final stages with Latics using attack as the best form of defence as the Oldham wingers continued to have great joy all afternoon.
Mansfield got their second to keep the game alive through Neal Bishop, his low shot from the edge of the penalty area unchallenged nestled into the bottom right corner to make it a nervy affair with 15 minutes remaining.
O'Grady and Lang went close straight at the other end. The former getting free on the left, shooting across goal where Lang couldn't get the final touch as the ball trickled past the post.
Mansfield's Walker then has a glorious opportunity to level the scores on the 80th minute. His first time shot, always rising, didn't trouble Iversen.
With only minutes remaining Oldham tried to keep the ball away from their own area.
But the final bit of action fell to the visitors. Failing to deal with the threat a shot hit the post before being turned in by Rose. Thankfully though it was waved offside to see out a terrific result to keep the season alive that bit longer.
Attendance: 6,179 (1,334 away)
Oldham Athletic: Iversen, Edmundson, Iacovitti, O'Grady, Missilou, Lang, Clarke (C), Nepomuceno, Maouche, Hamer, Sylla (84' Hunt).
Mansfield Town: Logan, Benning, Pearce (C), Bishop, Mellis, Sweeney (58' Rose), Walker, Jones, Hamilton, Grant (52' MacDonald).
LATICS MATCH VERDICT: Oldham Athletic 3-2 Mansfield Town
PETE Wild believes Oldham Athletic showed just how good they are after watching his side spoil Mansfield’s promotion party with a thrilling 3-2 victory.
Gevaro Nepomuceno bagged a brace as the Latics made it six unbeaten to keep their play-off hopes alive against the automatic promotion-chasing visitors at Boundary Park.
Nepomuceno handed the hosts the advantage before the break before Mohamed Maouche added their second, while Tyler Walker responded for the Stags on the hour.
Oldham’s two-goal cushion was then restored by Nepomuceno, but Neal Bishop’s low effort pulled one back for Mansfield before Danny Rose saw his late effort ruled out for offside.
And despite admitting the home side rode their luck at times, Wild insisted the result was fully deserved after praising his players for showcasing their talent on the big stage.
“I said to the players there’s only one reason why Sky are here today and it ain’t for us - they’ve come to see Mansfield’s promotion party,” said Wild.
“So let’s go out and prove a point on the telly and show what good players and what good lads they are. I thought you saw that in abundance today.
“It was a really good game, wasn’t it? I thought it became like a basketball game too early, and it was just end-to-end stuff. If Langy puts that in, it kills the game.
“Let’s be honest, it would have been a travesty if we’d have lost the game - an absolute travesty because we were the dominant team throughout the game.
“But you’ve got to take your chances in that. I believe it was onside, their last goal, I’ve not seen it yet, but it’s about time we got a bit of luck. They’re the best team in the league in my opinion.”
The Latics started well as Maouche's dipping effort from outside the box went just off target, while at the other end, Mansfield top scorer Walker’s similar effort produced the same result.
Oldham took a deserved lead before the half hour when a sublime pass from Maouche cut through the Stags defence to find the darting Nepumuceno who slotted past Conrad Logan.
Ryan Sweeney rose highest from Mal Benning’s 36th-minute corner to nod over as the Stags improved before the interval.
Within moments of the restart, the Stags could have gone level after Bishop hooked Benning’s free kick across goal for skipper Krystian Pearce who stabbed straight at Daniel Iversen.
In an end-to-end start to the second half, CJ Hamilton led a counter from an Oldham corner to find Jacob Mellis whose effort had the sting taken off by Tom Hamer’s challenge.
But the Latics doubled their lead before the hour when Nepomuceno’s shot deflected off Matt Preston and into Maouche’s path to bury from close range.
The Stags halved the deficit not long after though when midfielder Mellis’ ball found Walker who nutmegged an onrushing Iversen.
However, Oldham restored their two-goal cushion when the Mansfield rearguard could only clear to a free Nepomuceno, who rifled a 67th-minute effort into the roof of the net.
Callum Lang could have added Oldham’s fourth with fewer than 20 minutes left after collecting Maouche’s pass, but Logan spread himself well to keep the effort out.
Nepomuceno darted down the right to deliver a teasing cross past both Chris O’Grady and Lang, before Bishop turned on the edge of the box after Benning’s 76th-minute corner fell to him and his low effort crept in to grab another back for Mansfield.
The Stags thought they had salvaged a point at the death when Mellis' 96th-minute effort rebounded off the post for Rose to bury, but he was flagged offside.
Oldham: (4-4-1-1): Daniel Iversen 6, Tom Hamer 7, Peter Clarke 7, George Edmundson 7, Alex Iacovitti 6, Callum Lang 8, Mohamed Sylla 8 (Rob Hunt 84 6), Christopher Missilou 8, Gevaro Nepomuceno 9, Mohamed Maouche 9, Chris O’Grady 7.
Subs not used: Zeus De La Paz, Andy Taylor, Giles Coke, Jonathan Benteke, Sonhy Sefil, Oladapo Afolayan.
Mansfield: (3-4-3): Conrad Logan, Matt Preston, Krystian Pearce, Ryan Sweeney (Danny Rose 59), Gethin Jones, Jacob Mellis, Neal Bishop, Mal Benning, Jorge Grant (Alex MacDonald 53), Tyler Walker, CJ Hamilton.
Subs not used: Jordan Smith, Will Atkinson, Willem Tomlinson, Ben Turner, Zayn Hakeem.
Referee: John Busby.
Latest | April 2019