PRE-SEASON: MANSFIELD 4-2 GLASGOW RANGERS U23
Mansfield Town 4 - 2 Glasgow Rangers U23
Cook 38, Mellis 48, Rose 74, Khan 75. Houston 43, Sweeney OG 54.
Attendance: 1063 (141 from Glasgow Rangers)
Date: 27 July 2019
Martin Shaw at the One Call Stadium, Field Mill
Mansfield Town completed their pre-season friendly programme with a 4-2 win at home to a Glasgow Rangers U23 side this afternoon, in an entertaining and enjoyable game. The Rangers U23 side, rather like the Nottingham Forest U23 side on Tuesday, was much more than an U23 side, with half of the side actually experienced players and/or first team squad members. Stags boss John Dempster was quick to thank Rangers boss Steven Gerrard for stepping in when the Stags were left without a fixture after the game against Stockport County had to be cancelled. Gerrard was not at the game today but did watch our full match live video streaming with commentary, having requested, and been given, a temporary login for iFollow Stags. As an aside, we were very proud to be the only club in League Two or League One to provide full match coverage of any pre-season friendly, let alone four games that we broadcast, and at no additional cost to subscribers.
The Stags took the lead after 38 minutes when Mal Benning’s free kick to the far post was headed back by Ryan Sweeney and Andy Cook knocked into the net from 4 yards for his first goal in a Stags shirt. The lead only lasted 5 minutes as Rangers young right back Jordan Houston fired a great shot into the bottom right corner of the net from 22 yards. The Stags regained the lead when half-time substitute Danny Rose won a free kick 26 yards from goal and Jacob Mellis sent a stunning free kick into the left corner of the net, giving Rangers reserve keeper Andy Firth no chance. But again the lead last just 6 minutes as Rangers equalised with a fluke goal when experienced striker Greg Stewart's shot was going well wide but took an outrageous deflection to loop past Logan into the net. Two goals in a minute after 74 minutes were enough to deservedly win the game. Firstly CJ Hamilton, also a half-time substitute did well to get to the byline on the left and find Danny Rose in space 12 yards from goal, Rose controlled the ball and clinically fired into right corner of the net. It was Rose’s second goal in pre-season, but his first at the One Call Stadium since he netted two against Northampton in September last year, and continued the promising form in pre-season which has hinted at a return to his form of two years ago. Within a minute, Benning played inside to Otis Khan, only just on as a substitute, and Khan gave the keeper the eyes wrong-footing him and firing home from 16 yards. Khan has impressed through pre-season and this was his first goal having been unlucky to hit the woodwork twice in previous games. Plenty of other promising performances today as well, with Conrad Logan continuing his fine pre-season form after ending last season so well, the back three looking pretty solid and looking nailed on to start next week in that formation at Newport County. Dion Donohue, the summer signing from Portsmouth, finally made his first appearance, as a substitute for Neal Bishop after 65 minutes, and looked very impressive. It’s highly unlikely that he would start at Newport of course given his lack of game time after injury. Kellan Gordon, the new signing from Derby County this week, played the first half, and did ok at right wing-back.
So where does this leave us in predicting the team for the first game at Newport? I think the following are certainties, barring unforeseen injury: Logan in goal, Preston, Pearce and Sweeney as central defensive three, Benning at left wing-back, Bishop and Mellis in midfield, Maynard up front, and Hamilton somewhere, either right wing back or up front. With White out for two weeks with injury, I think Hamilton may start at right wing-back. To partner Maynard up front, it’s a toss up between Cook and Rose based on pre-season form. I think Dempster will probably just err on the side of Cook. That leaves just one other slot, in midfield, and I would guess it would be MacDonald. That would leave Khan very unlucky to miss out on the starting XI having done really well in pre-season, but of course he would be a great threat to bring on as substitute. Once Donohue is match sharp, I think he might quickly force his way into the side. And of course, once White recovers from his minor hamstring strain, he would likely come in at right wing-back, meaning that Hamilton would have to be found a position somewhere else in the starting XI, because he simply has to play.
As for where the Stags will finish this season ... much of the squad is unchanged from last season, with Maynard and Cook coming in to replace Tyler Walker, while the quality of the likes of Pearce, Bishop and Hamilton has been retained. There is a new manager of course in John Dempster, who is not experienced in first team management, but who has done extremely well at youth team level. Overall, I expect the Stags to finish in the top 5, perhaps 3rd or 4th. Hopefully 3rd of course, rather than 4th, and so going one better than last season and hence getting promoted.
This was the team today:
Matt Preston, Krystian Pearce, Ryan Sweeney;
Kellan Gordon (new signing from Derby), Jacob Mellis, Alex MacDonald, Neal Bishop, Mal Benning;
Nicky Maynard (new signing from Bury), Andy Cook (new signing from Walsall).
CJ Hamilton (for Gordon, 46 mins)
Danny Rose (for Cook, 46 mins)
James Clarke (young right back signed from Burnley) (for Preston, 60 mins)
Dion Donohue (new signing from Portsmouth) (for Bishop, 65 mins)
Otis Khan (for MacDonald, 71 mins)
Omari Sterling-James (for Maynard, 71 mins)
Alistair Smith (for Mellis, 81 mins)
Subs not used:
Aidan Stone (new young keeper, to be understudy to Logan, until Olejnik fit), Lewis Gibbens.
Not involved: Bobby Olejnik (injured, hopefully back October), Hayden White (minor hamstring strain picked up against Nottm Forest U23 and will be out for 2 weeks), Willem Tomlinson (sustained minor knee ligament damage against Blackburn and will be out for three more weeks), Jordan Graham (injured), Craig Davies (injured); plus youngsters: Jamie Chisholm (from last season’s youth team), Noah Stokes (picked up a bad knee injury at Bradford PA), Jason Law (was ill prior to Alfreton game, but has since recovered to feature for the U21 side), Tyrese Sinclair (from last season’s youth team), Tom Fielding, Jimmy Knowles (from last season’s youth team, just signed pro deal).
It was a very wet day in Mansfield, which probably contributed to a small crowd.
FULL REPORT IN THE MATCH CENTRE
REPORT: Mansfield Town 4-2 Glasgow Rangers U23s - Stags impress on final pre-season outing
chad.co.uk, by STEPHEN THIRKILL, Saturday 27 July 2019
Mansfield Town ended their pre-season campaign with an impressive 4-2 win against Glasgow Rangers U23s.
Andy Cook gave Stags the lead on 39 minutes before Jordan Houston levelled for the Gers three minutes later.
Jacob Mellis fired home with a beautifully placed free-kick three minutes after the break, before Greg Stewart drew the Scots level with a deflected strike on 54 minutes.
But the home side scored two late goals inside three minutes through subs Danny Rose and Otis Khan to wrap up the victory.
It was a match in which Stags had to be patient and win the physical battle with Rangers enjoying the better of the opening exchanges with spells of controlled possession
But Mansfield’s superior and fresher options from the bench, with Stags having five more available subs than their opposition, helped transform the game with Mansfield bossing the final 20 minutes.
Kellan Gordon was named in the starting line-up following his move from Derby County during the week.
But Stags were without Hayden White after he picked up an injury in the midweek win over Nottingham Forest U23’s.
Ryan Sweeney alertly turned the ball to safety on nine minutes as Greg Stewart prepared to pounce.
Jacob Mellis sent a shot just wide for the home side on 14 minutes after Rangers carelessly gave the ball away in a dangerous area.
Conrad Logan got down well to save from Jake Hastie after he was played clean through on 17 minutes.
Graham Dorrans then fired two efforts over in quick succession as the Rangers youngsters started to step up the pressure.
Nicky Maynard was unable to find the target with a header on 25 minutes after getting on the end of Mal Benning’s cross.
Hastie screwed a shot just wide on the half hour mark after a brilliant counter attack from the Scots which started with them under pressure on the edge of their own box.
Logan beat away a long range effort from Stewart on 35 minutes as the visitors enjoyed another good spell.
But it was Stags who hit the front when Cook slotted home from inside the six yard box following on 39 minutes.
He was given the simplest of tasks after Ryan Sweeney's commanding knock-down from Benning's deep free-kick fell invitingly.
But the lead didn’t last long with Houston brilliantly firing low into the bottom corner from the edge of the box three minutes later.
Mellis fired Mansfield back into the lead on 48 minutes with a brilliant 25 yard free-kick.
Stewart levelled for the Gers on 54 minutes thanks to a wicked deflection.
Dion Dononhue entered the pitch on 65 minutes for his Mansfield Town debut.
Logan saved with his feet to deny Josh McPake on 73 minutes as Rangers looked for a winner.
But it was Stags who hit the front when Danny Rose cooly slotted home on 74 minutes.
And it was game over when Otis Khan rifled home another beauty two minutes later.
Logan, who had little to do in the second half, saved well again with his feet to keep out McPake with eight minutes to go.
Mansfield Town: Logan, Preston (Clarke 60), Pearce, Sweeney, Gordon (Hamilton 45), MacDonald (Khan 71), Mellis (Smith 81), Bishop (Donohue 65), Benning, Maynard (Sterling-James 71), Cook (Rose 45).
Subs: Stone, Gibbens.
Glasgow Rangers: Firth, Houston, Maxwell (King 76), Finlayson, Mayo, Barjonas, McPake, Dorrans, Stewart, Murphy, Hastie.
Subs: McAcams, Balde, McKinnon.
Ref: Declan Bourne.
Att: 1,063 (141)
Stags man of match: Jacob Mellis.
Mansfield 4-2 Rangers XI
Saturday, 27 July 2019, by Thomas Smith
GOALS from Jordan Houston and Greg Stewart were not enough as Rangers Development Side fell to a 4-2 defeat against Mansfield Town at the One Call Stadium.
The Gers had a mixed team with under-20, under-19, under-18 and under-16 players playing alongside some first team players against an experienced senior aide.
Twice Rangers came from behind to level matters against the League Two side, but a quick-fire double eventually saw the visitors edged out.
The Development side looked to display real authority from the off and centre-back Lewis Mayo had Nicky Maynard well marshalled, with full-back James Maxwell also stepping in as the experienced forward sprung down the right.
Jacob Mellis’ skidding effort, which Andy Firth had covered, zipped past the post in the games first effort on goal before Rangers looked to make their mark.
Jamie Murphy expertly rolled his opponent inside his own half before bursting forward, his perfectly weighted pass finding the onrushing Greg Stewart whose low effort was parried behind by Conrad Logan.
From the resulting corner Jamie Barjonas sold an effective dummy and despite his centre being cleared, Graham Dorrans followed up with a shot just over the bar.
Approaching the break it was Rangers who continued to create the better openings and Jake Hastie fired narrowly wide from the angle, after Josh McPake set him free.
However, it was the hosts who took the lead when Andy Cook pounced at close range from Mal Benning’s free-kick in the 38th minute.
But Graeme Murty’s side who had the better of the opening period ensured they went in level, striking back just three minutes later. It appeared all options were exhausted but right-back Jordan Houston swept home a superb long-range equaliser.
A turnaround was almost completed on the stroke of half-time but Greg Stewart took one touch too many when looking to shoot, before his ball across the face of goal was cleared away by the home side.
Just moments after the restart Mellis restored Mansfield’s lead as his curling free-kick found the back of the net in the 48th minute.
Murty’s side continued to show their resilience and in the 54th minute again hit back to level the scoreline. Houston this time turning provider, with his ball inside being collected by Stewart who found the far corner from a deflected attempt on goal.
A series of Mansfield changes disrupted the games flow as the second-half wore on, but Rangers continued to attack in pursuit of the lead. Maxwell had an increasing attacking influence and fed McPake who was denied by Logan’s feet, having also nearly supplied Murphy with a chance.
Instead it was the Stags who again took the lead, this time when CJ Hamilton’s pull back was dispatched by Danny Rose. An advantage they swiftly added to just 60 seconds later when Otis Khan slotted home from the angle.
RANGERS: Andy Firth, Jordan Houston, James Maxwell (Leon King, 74), Daniel Finlayson, Lewis Mayo, Jamie Barjonas, Josh McPake, Graham Dorrans, Greg Stewart, Jamie Murphy (c), Jake Hastie:
SUBS: Aidan McAdams, Umaro Balde, Cole McKinnon.
MANSFIELD TOWN: Conrad Logan, Mal Benning, Matt Preston (James Clarke, 60), Krystian Pearce (c), Neal Bishop (Dion Donohue, 65), Alex MacDonald (Otis Khan, 72), Jacob Mellis (Alistair Smith, 82), Nicky Maynard (Omari Sterling-James, 72), Ryan Sweeney, Andy Cook (Danny Rose, 45), Kellan Gordon (CJ Hamilton, 45).
SUBS: Aidan Stone, Lewis Gibbons.
REFEREE: Declan Bourne
ATTENDANCE: 1,063 (144 away)
Latest | July 2019