Former Stags’ star Kevin Bird’s charity match is just a few days away, so we thought we’d take a look at who will be pulling on the amber and blue shirt on his behalf.
The match pits a select Mansfield Town squad against Soapstars/Celebs FC at One Call Stadium on Sunday 14 May (3.00pm kick-off), with all proceeds being split between the Alzheimer’s Society and the Once Upon a Star charity.
Facing the likes of Prey star Daniel Jillings and the X-Factor’s Jake Quickenden, a star-studded Stags’ side will line-up at One Call Stadium, and this is who you can expect to see in action.
Ian Bowling – goalkeeper
After spending nine years playing for clubs such as Gainsborough Trinity, Stafford Rangers and Lincoln City, goalkeeper Ian Bowling joined Mansfield Town in 1995 and went on to become a Stags’ legend.
The Sheffield-born custodian made over 200 appearances in Stags’ colours and was the Player of the Year in his first season, as his heroics saw Stags avoid relegation from Division Three.
After leaving Stags in 2000, Bowling went on to play for Kettering, Worksop Town and Stalybridge Celtic, among others, and now works as goalkeeping coach and scout for Matlock Town.
Nicky Weaver – goalkeeper
Goalkeeper Nicky Weaver made a solitary appearance for Mansfield Town as a youngster before moving to Manchester City in April 1997.
He was recommended to City by legendary Manchester United goalkeeper Alex Stepney. Although he was largely used as City’s second-choice ‘keeper, he stayed at Maine Road for 10 years and made over 200 appearances.
Bobby Hassell – defender
Legendary former Stags’ defender Bobby Hassell will be returning to One Call Stadium to represent Kevin Bird this Sunday.
The right-back came through the ranks at the Stags before making his senior debut in 1997. He quickly made the right-back berth his own and was extremely dependable for the next seven years, until he moved to Barnsley in 2004.
Now 36, he was part of the side which won promotion from Division Three in 2001/02, making 43 appearances, before playing his final match for the club in the Division Three play-off final defeat against Huddersfield in May 2004.
He is now head of recruitment at Barnsley’s Academy.
Tom Naylor – defender
Defender Tom Naylor began his career by coming through the Stags’ youth system and made 23 appearances for his hometown club before joining Derby.
His spell with Derby contained 10 first team appearances, but he enjoyed fruitful loan spells with Bradford, Grimsby, Newport, Cambridge and Burton, before joining the Brewers permanently in 2015.
Adie Moses – defender
Former Premier League defender Adie Moses played a solitary season for the Stags in 2008-09, which included a stint as caretaker manager.
The Doncaster-born defender spent eight years with Barnsley, plying his trade in the top two divisions of English football before going on to join Huddersfield, Crewe, Lincoln and then Gainsborough Trinity after his spell at One Call Stadium.
Simon Coleman – defender
Classy central defender Simon Coleman was part of the squad which won the Freight Rover Trophy in 1987 – arguably Mansfield Town’s greatest day.
Born in Worksop in 1968, Coleman made over 100 appearances for the Stags before going on to play Premier League football for Sheffield Wednesday and Bolton in the mid-1990s.
Les Robinson – defender
Shirebrook-born defender Les Robinson will also turn out for the Stags’ legends side on Sunday.
He began his career with the Stags in 1984 before returning to the club for a two-year stint in 2000, when he made more than 80 appearances.
His two stints at One Call Stadium were punctuated by spells with Stockport County and Doncaster Rovers, before he joined Oxford United and made over 400 appearances.
Alistair Asher – defender
Defender Alistair Asher came through the youth ranks at Mansfield Town and went on to make more than 80 appearances in the amber and blue.
He left in 2002 to join Halifax Town, before joining Hucknall a year later and playing in non-league ever since.
Jamie McGuire – midfielder
Tough-tackling midfielder Jamie McGuire will be making an appearance on Sunday as the only current EFL player to take to the pitch.
McGuire has spent five years at the club after joining from Fleetwood Town and has made himself a fans’ favourite with his no-nonsense approach to the game.
Jon D’Laryea – midfielder
Manchester-born midfielder Jon D’Laryea graduated from the Manchester City academy and subsequently joined the Stags on loan with a view to a permanent move.
He spent three seasons with the Stags before moving into non-league football. He now plays for AFC Mansfield and teaches PE locally.
Tom Curtis – midfielder
Energetic midfielder Tom Curtis made over 100 appearances for the Stags between 2002 and 2005 and he will line up against the Soapstars/Celebs on Sunday.
He joined Stags halfway through their relegation season from Division Two in 2002, but played a huge role in helping Keith Curle’s men to secure a play-off spot the following season.
Ashley Kitchen – midfielder
Former academy midfielder Ashley Kitchen will be returning to One Call Stadium to take a berth in the Stags’ side on Sunday.
He came through the youth ranks at the Stags and made a handful of appearances before dropping in to non-league where he has played for Gainsborough Trinity and Glapwell.
Ryan Williams – midfielder
Sutton-in-Ashfield-born midfielder Ryan Williams first played for the Stags in 1995, when he made over 30 appearances during a two-year spell.
His 22-year career has seen him turn out for no fewer than 13 clubs, including a second spell with the Stags between 2009 and 2011.
Dave Caldwell – forward
Scottish forward David Caldwell joined Mansfield Town in a £25,000 move from Inverness Caledonian FC in June 1979.
The hot-shot goalscorer scored more than 50 goals in Stags’ colours over a six-year spell, before going in to play for clubs such as Carlisle, Chesterfield and Torquay.
Richie Barker – striker
Sheffield-born frontman Richie Barker scored 48 goals in 106 appearances for the Stags between 2004 and 2007.
Before he came to One Call Stadium, he appeared for Brighton, Rotherham and Macclesfield, and joined Hartlepool for £80,000 after leaving the Stags.
He is now the assistant manager at Rotherham United.
Danny Bacon – striker
Striker Danny Bacon rose through the ranks at Mansfield Town and made more than 50 senior appearances for his hometown club.
After leaving in 2003, he spent time with Hucknall, Lincoln, Burton Albion and Worksop Town.
He also played for Hednesford and Rainworth Miners Welfare, and is now player-coach at local side Teversal.
Son of match organiser Phil, Jamie Walker played youth team football with Mansfield Town.
Jamie is the reason why Phil began organising charity matches, as he was diagnosed with Hodgkins Lymphoma in 2005. After receiving chemotherapy and radiotherapy, he is now in remission.
There are still two spots in the squad up for grabs and you could win them!
Two lucky supporters will win the opportunity to play 45 minutes of the match by bidding for their place.
The two highest bids at the moment stand at £150 and £250 and the deadline for bids is at 5.00pm on Saturday 13 May.
To submit a bid, please email Sue Bird on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tickets to watch the match are available in advance from www.stagstickets.co.uk
or in person from our ticket office on Quarry Lane.
Alternatively, you can pay in cash on the day of the game at the first turnstile of the Ian Greaves Stand, closest to the Quarry Lane End.
Admission prices are as follows:
Seniors, 7-17, students: £3