Mansfield Town’s under 21s face Nottingham Forest in the Central League Cup this afternoon at the Reds' training ground (1.15pm kick-off).
Please note: the match is no longer open to the public to attend.
The Stags will be looking for their first victory in the competition as they go in to their third fixture residing fifth in the table and yet to open their points tally.
Mike Whitlow’s side began their Central League Cup campaign with a 4-2 defeat at home to Chesterfield on 14 September.
Spireites’ defender Laurence Maguire and veteran striker Gary Taylor-Fletcher grabbed a double each, whilst the home side replied through strikers Zayn Hakeem and Tyler Blake.
The under 21s were within touching distance of forcing a favourable result against Chesterfield, trailing 3-2 halfway through the second period, but a late defensive mix-up cost them an insurmountable fourth goal, meaning they ended the day empty-handed.
The Stags’ youngsters then travelled to Shrewsbury on 25 October for their second Cup game and displayed a much-improved overall performance at Greenhous Meadow, but were unfortunate to suffer a narrow 1-0 defeat.
Whitlow’s side were defensively resolute and asked questions of the opposition shot-stopper Mark Halstead on three occasions through midfielder Lewis Collins, and wingers Tom Marriott and Jason Law.
However, the Shrews secured full points courtesy of 30-year-old frontman Sylvan Ebanks-Blake’s goal on 54 minutes.
For Nottingham Forest, tomorrow’s tie will be their second in the Central League Cup. Although they are a place above the Stags in the table with a better goal-difference of -1, Jack Lester’s men are yet to register their first points in the competition.
The Reds’ opening fixture ended in a 2-1 defeat against Shrewsbury on 28 September, with all of the goals coming in the second half. The Shrews’ striking partnership of Andy Mangan and Tyrone Ofori netted on the day, while Forest pulled one back through Virgil Gomis.
Forest’s under 23s are currently plying their trade in the Professional Development League 2.
Their league meetings against Birmingham City and Sheffield Wednesday both finished all-square, whilst a Premier League Cup clash against West Ham United resulted in a 2-1 defeat.