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Match Reports

Report: Stags 0-0 Stevenage

24 August 2019

Mansfield Town were held to a 0-0 draw against Stevenage despite dominating large parts of Saturday afternoon’s Sky Bet League Two contest at One Call Stadium.

There were plenty of goalscoring chances that fell the way of the Stags, including a goal line clearance from a late Alex MacDonald chance.

However, it proved in vain with the amber and blue outfit left with a point in their fifth league outing.

John Dempster named four changes from their midweek outing due to a handful of minor injuries.

The quartet of Krystian Pearce, Kellan Gordon, Hayden White and Nicky Maynard were sidelined to make way for Matt Preston, Jacob Mellis, James Clarke and CJ Hamilton.

Mansfield began to display their attacking intent from the opening moments and almost found a breakthrough with as little as six minutes on the clock.

Hamilton was slipped down the left flank, courtesy of Otis Khan’s pass, and the winger teed up MacDonald who could only divert his effort wide.  

The Stags continued to threaten with Khan once more, except this time his free-kick delivery was flicked into the grasp of Paul Farman by Danny Rose.

MacDonald had another effort just minutes later – a dipping, long-range half-volley that was collected at the second attempt by the Stevenage ’keeper.

The visiting side did pose some danger themselves, too, showcased as Paul Taylor broke free inside the penalty area, only to be thwarted by the onrushing Conrad Logan.

Soon after, Will Tomlinson dragged the Stags’ next effort marginally wide, following another sublime passing move across the One Call turf.  

Skipper for the afternoon, Mal Benning, was next in line to try and break the deadlock but Farman emerged on top once more.  

Saturday afternoon’s contest entered a quiet spell in sweltering conditions but the noise levels were temporarily raised ten minutes from the interval.

Ryan Sweeney arrived late in the six-yard box to bundle the ball over the line, although, the assistant on the far side was quick to raise his flag for offside.

A crowd of bodies then denied MacDonald his third sight of goal in the first half as the midfielder was unable to weave through several challenges.

It signalled a stalemate at the interval and Mansfield returned from the break with their fixated firmly on notching the opening goal.

Mellis fired wide from 30 yards after a succession of corners that had been dealt with by Boro.

Hamilton then escaped the attentions of his marker to deliver a cross that resulted in yet another corner kick.

The home side were left disappointed to have not found the back of the net when Hamilton’s pass ensued a scramble for possession – one that Stevenage escaped from unscathed.

Benning then struck the side netting from close range before Matt Preston’s header was somehow cleared from the goal line.

And in the 76th minute, a quite spectacular save denied Rose his sixth goal in five league outings this term.

The striker had seemingly touched home but Farman scrambled across his goalmouth in order to claw the ball out of harm’s way.

With the score still level and only a minutes remaining, the stage was set for a grandstand finale.

MacDonald fired a vicious effort that, once more, had to be stopped on the line, before substitute Omari Sterling-James had his proceeding attempt thwarted by the legs of Farman.

There were no more gilt-edged chances, which ultimately meant it ended a stalemate at One Call Stadium.

Mansfield turn their attentions to Leasing.com Trophy action this forthcoming Tuesday as they host Everton U21s at home.

STAGS XI: Logan (GK), Benning ©, Preston, MacDonald (Knowles 89’), Mellis, Khan (Sterling-James 69’), Tomlinson, Sweeney, Clarke, Hamilton, Rose.

UNUSED SUBS: Stone (GK), Sinclair, Law, Gibbens, Smith.

STEVENAGE XI: Farman (GK), Wildin, Stokes, Soares ©, Carter (Fielding 78’), Byrom, Husin (Iontton 56’), Newton, Watts, Taylor (Kennedy 46’), Lakin.

UNUSED SUBS: Bastien (GK), Cowley, Smith.  

REFEREE: Marc Edwards

ASSISTANTS: Anthony Moore & Steven Plane

FOURTH OFFICIAL: Ian Smedley

ATTENDANCE: 3,982 (97 away)


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