Mansfield Town’s under 21s renew their rivalry with Chesterfield tomorrow in their penultimate game of the 2016/17 Central League season at Proact Stadium (21 March, 2.00pm kick-off).
Prior to their fixture against the Derbyshire side, Mike Whitlow’s men had their last outing against Rotherham United postponed due to a waterlogged pitch at Kirklington Road.
The Stags’ under 21s sit sixth in the league after eight matches, identical on points (nine) with the fifth-placed Spireites, due to an inferior goal difference.
Speaking to the local media at Monday morning's news conference, Stags' boss Steve Evans revealed that a strong team would be deployed against the Spireites and the players involved will be assessed ahead of Saturday's trip to Morecambe.
"I speak to Paul Raynor – it’s true, I speak to him more times than anybody in my life – we’ll speak in the evening and later in the evening and we’ll be talking about the reserve game, [and] just that.
"[We'll look at] who did well, who didn’t, how we’re thinking of Morecambe, who can come out of that reserve game and go into the first team."
The under 21s have recorded a mixed bag of results across all competitions since the turn of the calendar year, winning three and losing two in the five fixtures since early January.
It all began with successive victories over Notts County (2-1), York City (4-2) and Chesterfield (3-1), but the two subsequent away matches against Hartlepool United and Grimsby Town both resulted in hard-fought 2-1 defeats.
Tomorrow’s hosts Chesterfield will be seeking an upturn in their fortunes, having slipped to four losses in the last five games across all competitions.
Apart from a 2-0 triumph over York in the Central League, Ritchie Humphreys’ men left the field of play empty-handed against the Stags 3-1 and Grimsby 2-1.
Meanwhile, they also suffered a 5-3 (1-1) shootout heartbreak against Wigan Athletic in the Central League Cup semi-final.
Rotherham United’s under 21s provided their next league opposition, who took the plaudits 3-2 on home soil.
The Stags’ and the Spireites’ young guns have already locked horns twice this season, with a win apiece for either side.
Chesterfield defeated Mansfield 4-2 in the Central League Cup group stage in September 2016, but the Stags avenged the loss with a 3-1 humbling of Humphreys’ charges in the League’s reverse in January.
Supporters are welcome to watch the action unfold for FREE tomorrow at the following address:
1866 Sheffield Road,