With just hours remaining before the start of the new season, mansfieldtown.net reflects on our last ten opening day matches of the season.
Saturday, August 08 2015:
Stags 1-1 Carlisle United | Sky Bet League Two | Attendance: 4,146
The hosts started off the season with a decent point against play-off hopefuls Carlisle United at One Call Stadium. Mal Benning opened the scoring with a superb free kick after 29 minutes (pictured), but bustling target man Jabo Ibehre levelled the score on the stroke of half-time to rescue a point for the Cumbrians.
Saturday, August 09 2014:
Northampton Town 1-0 Stags | Sky Bet League Two | Attendance: 5,202
Kaid Mohamed’s strike was enough to send us to defeat at Sixfields Stadium in a match which saw debuts for midfielder Fergus Bell and striker Alex Fisher, amongst others. The affair was watched by a strong away following of 900 fans.
Saturday, August 03 2013:
Scunthorpe United 2-0 Stags | Sky Bet League Two | Attendance: 5,241
After five years out of the League, the Stags returned with defeat at Scunthorpe. Matt Sparrow struck on the half hour mark before Sam Winnall – who ended the season as League Two’s top scorer – added to their lead before the break. The hosts were reduced to 10 men after Eddie Nolan’s two bookings, but it didn’t alter the outcome.
Saturday, August 11 2012:
Stags 3-4 Newport County | Blue Square Premier | Attendance: 2,924
A season of title winning glory. Despite losing 11 of 46 in the league, two of those defeats came against Newport County, including on opening day. Ismail Yakubu and Tony James netted early for the visitors before Jake Speight and Matt Green levelled matters at the start of the second half. Aaron O’Connor restored County’s lead, with Jefferson Louis adding a fourth. Speight reduced the arrears late on.
Saturday, August 13 2011:
Stags 1-1 Bath City | Blue Square Premier | Attendance: 3,997
A season which ended in play-off semi-final agony began in less dramatic fashion with a third minute Paul Connor goal (pictured) cancelled out by Bath’s Adam Connolly 10 minutes before the break. Although Matt Green was subbed off in the 76th minute without finding the net, he still went on to score 29 league goals, two short of Fleetwood’s Jamie Vardy.
Saturday, August 14 2010:
Stags 3-1 Forest Green | Blue Square Premier | Attendance: 2,474
A rousing second half display saw Mansfield claim an early season victory in front of their own fans. After a goalless stalemate in the opening period, Paul Connor and Gary Mills struck either side of a Gavin Caines goal, with Connor sealing the win in the 72nd minute.
Saturday, August 08 2009:
Stags 4-0 Crawley Town | Blue Square Premier | Attendance: 3,264
The Stags got off to a flier at the then named Field Mill, scoring three times in the first half to seal an opening day three points. Two goals from Kyle Perry (pictured) and one from Rob Duffy sent us on our way. There was still time for free-scoring Jake Speight (who would hit 17 league goals that campaign) to add to the rout.
Saturday, August 09 2008:
Ebbsfleet 2-2 Stags | Blue Square Premier | Attendance: 1,872
The Stags made it three opening day draws on the trot as they began life outside of the Football League with a point at Ebbsfleet. Michael Gash and Stacy Long struck for the hosts, suggesting a relegation hangover for the visitors. But any such thoughts were brushed away thanks to Michael Blackwood’s second half effort and a last-minute Jason Lee goal.
Saturday, August 11 2007:
Brentford 1-1 Stags | League Two | Attendance: 4,909
Starting a season that would ultimately end in relegation from the Football League, the Stags earned an encouraging point at Griffin Park, despite falling behind to Alan Connell’s 14th minute opener. The visitors rallied, with Michael Boulding’s strike in the 23rd minute earning a share of the spoils.
Saturday, August 05 2006:
Shrewsbury 2-2 Stags | League Two | Attendance: 5,066
An action packed opening 45 minutes to the season saw the Stags take a 17th minute lead through Matth Hamshaw, only for the Shrews to hit back five minutes later thanks to Stuart Drummond. David Edwards turned the game around for the hosts, but Simon Brown levelled things two minutes before half-time.