Youngsters suffer last-minute heartache in friendly encounter in West Yorkshire.
Ashley Preece’s last-minute winner consigned our youngsters to a 1-0 defeat to Garforth Town in an entertaining pre-season clash in West Yorkshire.
Preece nodded into an empty net from three yards out in the final minute of normal time after Nick Black’s chipped effort over Adam Bishop rebounded back off the woodwork.
It was a disappointing end to the night for our young guns, who competed bravely against their elder counterparts and even created a few chances of their own to snatch victory.
Garforth looked bright early on and went close on the quarter-hour mark when Luke Managham controlled a long ball into the area from the right-wing and fired just a few inches wide of Fraser Hampson’s left-hand post.
Black volleyed over from a similar position shortly afterwards and the pressure continued but Stags’ ‘keeper Hampson made two saves in quick succession – including a full-stretch one-handed save from an acrobatic effort – to keep the match goalless.
Mansfield’s best chance of the opening 45 minutes came just after the half-hour mark when Louis Danquah’s set-piece cross was headed narrowly over by skipper Jack Koczalski.
The Stags made five changes ahead of the second period with Hampson, Dan Fletcher, Joe Fitzpatrick, Luke Thomas and Rory Thomson substituted for Bishop, Jack Hutchinson, Liam Carver, Ollie Roome and Cazz Warren respectively.
Warren almost made a near-immediate impact as he latched onto a low through ball and carved out a shooting angle, but he was distracted by an advancing and his effort went wide.
Garforth then enjoyed a sustained spell of pressure, but debutant Bishop showed his potential by saving a free-kick by Jassim Alali, as well as quick-fire attempts by Wyatt and Daniel Harris.
Black also blazed over from just a few yards when he had both time and space in his favour, before he had a scruffy shot under pressure from Koczalski easily gathered by Bishop.
Mansfield’s attacking threat was sparse, but the visitors nearly poked their noses in front with a quarter-of-an-hour remaining, as Trovarn Thompson’s goalbound effort from Liam Carver’s near-post cross was somehow turned away by the Garforth goalkeeper.
That save ultimately proved crucial as in the last-minute of normal time, Preece nodded home from point-blank range to seal victory for the home team, after Black’s chip ricocheted off the woodwork.
Players Used: Frazer Hampson, Rory Thomson, Charlie Brownlie, Jack Koczalski, Luke Thomas, Drew Gibson, Louis Danquah, Joe Fitzpatrick, Tyler Blake, Trovarn Thompson, Dan Fletcher, Adam Bishop, Jack Hutchinson, Ollie Roome, Liam Carver, Cazz Warren.
Our youngsters’ complete pre-season schedule is as follows:
Vs Clipstone (a), Saturday 12 July (3.00pm) – L 1-2
Vs Garforth Town (a), Wednesday 16 July (7.45pm) - L 0-1
Vs Ollerton Town (a), Saturday 19 July (10.45am)
Vs Matlock Town (a), Wednesday 23 July (7.45pm)
Vs Coalville Town (a), Saturday 26 July (3.00pm)
Vs Grantham Town (a), Saturday 02 August (3.00pm)
Vs West Bridgford (a), Monday 04 August (7.30pm)