NO POSITIVES AS STAGS BEATEN AT OLDHAM
English Football League - Sky Bet League Two
Oldham Athletic 3 - 1 Mansfield Town
Smith 23, Hamer 43, Nepomuceno 58. Khan 90+3
Attendance: 2961 (395 from Mansfield)
Date: 28 January 2020
Martin Shaw at Boundary Park
Mansfield Town were beaten 3-1 at Oldham Athletic last night to follow up Saturday’s magnificent performance with a terrible performance. The Stags were second best in every single department. Defensively Mansfield were terrible with two awful pieces of marking gifting two Oldham goals in the first half. In midfield and up front, the Stags lacked energy, intensity, pace and quality. Mansfield were chasing shadows for much of the evening, and barely created a chance, while Oldham had plenty of efforts at goal.
Gevaro Nepomuceno terrorised Mansfield last season with two goals and a terrific performance at Boundary Park, and he once again he put in a super performance on the right of midfield, capping it with a fine goal in the second half to put the icing on the cake for Oldham and make it 3-0.
The Stags scored a consolation goal with almost the last kick of the game as substitute Otis Khan scored from 8 yards after a cross from Joe Riley. For Khan, signed by David Flitcroft to be a goalscoring midfielder, it was his first goal in the league since scoring twice on his debut against Newport County 18 months ago.
So why were Mansfield so lacking in energy and intensity, unable to press Oldham, and chasing shadows all evening? I think it comes down to having put so much into Saturday’s performance against Bradford. Graham Coughlan has talked a lot about improving fitness levels since he’s come in to enable his players to play the pressing game that he wants. It requires very high fitness levels. The players’ fitness has clearly improved and as a result they were able to keep going for 90 minutes on Saturday, whereas they hadn’t been able to keep going for 90 minutes against Forest Green. But they haven’t reached a level where they can do it for 90 minutes twice in 3 days yet. That’s not trying to provide excuses, I’m just trying to explain why I think it happened. The simple fact of the matter is that Oldham were much better in every department and deserved their win, possibly by a more convincing scoreline than 3-1. Huge credit to Oldham, who were very impressive, with Christopher Missilou, Mo Sylla and Jonny Smith particularly catching the eye in midfield along with Nepomuceno. Oldham made five changes to their starting line-up last night, whereas Mansfield made only one, resting Neal Bishop. Did this contribute? Possibly. Certainly I had expected Coughlan to freshen the side up more than he did last night, given where the fitness levels are currently.
Mansfield are down to 21st place. An uncomfortable position. With Morecambe winning last night, the gap to 23rd place is down to just four points. But of course only one team goes down this season, and the gap to bottom place Stevenage is 8 points. The Stags need to bounce back on Saturday at home to Carlisle, who picked up a surprise 4-1 win at Forest Green last night.
The signing of Kelland Watts, on loan from Newcastle United until the end of the season, was announced a couple of hours before kick-off. Watts played the first half of the season on loan at Stevenage and indeed was signed by then-Stevenage manager Dino Maamria, who is now manager of Oldham. Primarily a centre half, Watts can also play in midfield, left back, and even played up front for Stevenage. He played in central defence for Stevenage against Mansfield earlier in the season as Stevenage played out a 0-0 draw at the One Call Stadium. Watts came straight into the starting line-up last night, in midfield, in place of the rested Bishop. But Watts had a night to forget, as did the rest of the side. With Watts coming into the side, Bishop was on the bench, and Clarke dropped out of the 18.
FULL REPORT IN THE MATCH CENTRE
MATCH REPORT: Misery for Mansfield Town as they are well beaten at Oldham Athletic
chad.co.uk, Tuesday 28th January 2020
Mansfield Town's miserable season continued with a disappointing 3-1 defeat at Oldham Athletic tonight.
It was sweet revenge for a Latics side beaten 6-1 at Mansfield in October when they had two men sent off.
The struggling Stags looked to have turned the corner by beating Bradford City 3-0 last time out and boss Graham Coughlan had called on them to build on that and find consistency.
But goals from Jonny Smith, Thomas Hamer and Gevaro Nepomuneco condemned Coughlan’s charges to a fourth defeat in five, substitute Otis Khan grabbing a stoppage-time consolation as the ‘After The lord Mayor’s Show’ Coughlan feared became a reality.
The Stags failed to fire at Boundary Park and have now won just two of their last 14 outings.
Defeat saw Coughlan’s side - who sit eight points above the relegation zone - leagfrogged by the Latics.
It was one way traffic in Greater Manchester and the Stags’ goal was peppered by the hosts.
Stopper Bobby Olejnik was called into action to stop Nepomuneco’s early effort.
But the keeper could do nothing as Smith opened the scoring in the 23rd minute. Nepomuneco’s cross found his opposite winger who expertly blasted into the far corner.
The Latics continued to dominate as Danny Rowe fired wide of the target.
Olejnik made a simple save to keep out Zachary Dearnley’s effort after the forward did the hard work to get into the box.
But the hosts' endeavour prevailed as Hamer headed home off the post to double the advantage.
It could have been three just after the restart as Olejnik produced a smart stop to keep out Nepomuceno.
Coughlan quickly made a double swap as Andy Cook and Willem Tomlinson replaced Nicky Maynard and Harry Charsley in a bid to change the game.
But winger Nepomuceno got a deserved goal before the hour with a fantastic finish after cutting in to fire home.
The Latics continued to push with captain David Wheater nodding wide of the target.
Mansfield had a couple of late chances with substitute Khan and new boy Kelland Watts kept out by Zeus de La Paz.
But Khan finally got the visitors on the scoresheet deep in stoppage time - his first goal since back in August 2018.
Stags now prepare for the visit of another fellow struggling side, Carlisle United, on Saturday with the Cumbrians on a high after two successive wins and a superb 4-1 victory at Forest Green Rovers tonight.
OLDHAM: de La Paz, Hamer, Wheater, Piergianni, Borthwick-Jackson, Smith, Sylla, Missilou (N’Guessan, 84), Nepomuceno (Branger, 87), Rowe, Dearnley (Maouche, 63). Unused subs: Allen, Mills, Azankpo, Wilson.
MANSFIELD: Olejnik, Riley, Pearce, Sweeney, Benning, MacDonald, Watts, Charsley (Tomlinson, 51), Hamilton, Rose (Khan, 71), Maynard (Cook, 51). Unused subs: Stone, Knowles, Preston, Bishop.
REFEREE: Michael Salisbury.
ATTENDANCE: 2,961 (395 away).
MATCH REPORT: Latics Impressively Beat Mansfield Town
Latics 3-1 Mansfield Town.
Oldham eased to their first victory of the year beating Mansfield Town by three goals to one at a wet Boundary Park.
Latics made the perfect start to the game and goals from Jonny Smith and Tom Hamer saw they were in cruise control going into the break. A professional second half paired with a mercurial effort from Gevaro Nepomuceno ensure it was a good day at the office for Dino Maamria’s men. Town did pull one back with just seconds left on the clock with Ottis khan supplying the finish.
Latics started the game on the front foot and showed true attacking intent from the off. Oldham showed some early signs of promise but their first chance of note came in the 13th minute when Jonny Smith managed to get down the line and fired in a dangerous cross which the Stags’ keeper could only punch away.
They didn’t have to wait long for the next opportunity to come along and it was Smith again who forced the issue. His cross was aimed for talisman Danny Rowe who couldn’t get his head to it. The ball fell fortuitously to Gevaro Nepomuceno who’s shot was a straight forward save for Bobby Olejnik.
A rare attack from Manfield was answered by a swift Latics counter-attack started by Zeus De La Paz throwing the ball long to Jonny Smith, who yet again caused havoc and unleashed a cross into the box that was cleared for a Latics throw. The resulting throw led to a chance for skipper David Wheater, who’s low finish was an easy save for Stags’ stopper.
Smith got the reward for his performance in the 23rd minute, Nepomuceno’s ball in narrowly evaded the head of Danny Rowe and the ball fell to Smith who toyed with the Mansfield defence before slotting in a perfect finish into the far bottom corner.
Oldham’s dominance continued after taking the lead and new signing Danny Rowe fired wide from distance after Christopher Missilou continued his impressive display by charging through the midfield and picking out the striker.
Despite Oldham’s complete domination, the visitors had a chance the level the scoring as CJ Hamilton’s cross was only partially cleared causing a scrap in the box that eventually ended up in a Latics free-kick.
Wheater had a great chance to double the lead but he headed Jonny Smith’s corner over the bar in the 38th minute. Dearnley also had a half-chance not long after, he battled his way into the visitor’s 18-yard box and managed to get a shot off that was saved by Olejnik.
Just moments later and Oldham did have the second goal that their sparkling play deserved. Tom Hamer ghosted in unmarked and managed to flick the ball off the post and into the Mansfield goal.
Mansfield could not have complained if Latics would have scored a third before the interval and it was nearly a reality; Danny Rowe fired agonisingly wide of the mark in the 44th minute.
Latics started the second half as they finished the first, Nepomuceno broke through but ignored the shouts from forwards Dearnley and Rowe to go alone and fire a shot straight at the grateful looking Olejnik. He redeemed himself less than 10 minutes later with a peach of a goal. He struck an unsavable effort from approximately 20 yards out that flew into the bottom corner.
Latics had a few chances from free-kicks the first saw the Mansfield wall deny Rowe from opening his account at Boundary Park and the second was whipped in by Jonny Smith, Mansfield failed to clear effectively but Missilou could only divert his effort over the top.
Oldham never looked in any danger and it was a debut to remember for Cameron Borthwick-Jackson as part of a well organised Oldham back four.
Not even a 93rd-minute goal from Ottis Khan or the wet conditions could dampen the mood at Boundary Park as fans were treated to a quality display at both ends of the park from Maamria’s men.
Oldham Athletic 3-1 Mansfield Town.
Attendance: 2961 (395 away).
Oldham Athletic: De La Paz, Nepomuceno (Branger-Engone, 88), Missilou, Sylla, Smith, Wheater ©, Pierginanni, Hamer, Dearnley (Maouche, 64), Rowe, Borthwick-Jackson.
Substitutes: Allen, Mills, Branger-Engone, Maouche, Wilson, Segbe Azankpo, N’Guessan.
Mansfield Town: Olejnik, Benning, Pearce ©, McDonald, Maynard (Cook, 51), Watts, Sweeney, Riley, Hamilton, Charsley (Tomlinson, 51), Rose (Khan, 71).
Substitutes: Stone, Preston, Bishop, Khan, Tomlinson, Cook, Knowles.
Referee: Michael Salisbury
Latest | January 2020