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Match Reports

Report: Stags 3-2 Man City U21

30 August 2022

Lucas Akins scored one and set up another as Stags recorded a 3-2 victory against Manchester City under-21s in an action-packed Papa Johns Trophy group stage encounter.

Akins nodded home in the first half and set up James Gale in the second, while George Lapslie climbed off the bench to grab the winner for Mansfield.
 
A crowd of 1,804 were treated to a thrilling contest, with chances galore, aided by some excellent football from both sides.
 
City's under-21s displayed superb technical ability and pace which tested Mansfield in different ways than a usual League Two encounter.
 
Eight changes were made from the Stags' side which lost 2-1 at Sutton United on Saturday in Sky Bet League Two.
 
Oli Hawkins missed out due to illness while John-Joe O'Toole was sidelined with a foot injury.
 
Scott Flinders, Kellan Gordon, Elliott Hewitt, Kieran Wallace, Ollie Clarke, George Maris, Jordan Bowery and James Gale all came into the starting XI.
 
Christy Pym, James Perch, Anthony Hartigan, Stephen Quinn, George Lapslie and Will Swan joined Hawkins and O'Toole in making way.
 
In a frantic opening, City registered the game's first shot inside the fourth minute when Hewitt was well positioned on the goal line to clear Adedire Mebude's shot from the right side of the penalty area.
 
The visitors went close again two minutes later as Juan Larios linked up well with Shea Charles, culminating in Larios striking narrowly wide of the far post.
 
Stags almost had the breakthrough after eight minutes as Gale slipped a short pass to Bowery inside the penalty area, whose low drive was deflected beyond the post for a corner.
 
Stags grew into the game and McLaughlin tried his luck moments later with a left-footed piledriver which City goalkeeper Mikki van San had to turn behind.
 
The youngsters from Manchester thought they were ahead in the 11th minute when Will Dickson slotted home from close range following a slick passing move, but his celebrations were cut short as the linesman ruled it out for offside.
 
At the other end, McLaughlin swept in a delicious left-wing cross and Gale rose well to heads goalwards, only for van San to deny the effort with his legs. 
 
Though he could do little about Stags' opening goal.
 
After 16 breathless opening minutes, Maris delivered a pin-point corner towards the back post onto the head of Lucas Akins who nodded downwards into the net.
 
 
With 25 minutes played, Larios was the first name to enter the referee's notebook when he brought down a flying Jordan Bowery outside the City box.
 
McLaughlin smashed a 20 yard piledriver inches over the angle of crossbar and post as the Stags searched a second goal of the night.
 
But it was City who were to find the net in the 29th minute.
 
Goalkeeper van Sas spotted the darting run Carlos Borges, who took advantage of a defensive mix-up to sprint through the middle, round the advancing Scott Flinders, and slot the ball home.
 
Two minutes later, City took the lead.
 
Stags were again caught out by a long ball, and Dickson applied a simple finish from Mebude's low pass as Mansfield struggled to keep alive to the visitors' blistering pace.
 
With ten minutes of the first half remaining, Charles powered a low effort off target from 20 yards following a City corner.
 
In the last few minutes of the first half, Gale was unable to test the goalkeeper when he headed over from Maris' corner.
 
Gordon saw an effort cannon off a City defender in first half stoppage time, moments before referee Ross Joyce brought a rip-roaring first period to a close.
 
A minute into the second half, Maris' corner caused problems inside the box and substitute Nico O'Reilly headed against his own bar.
 
Gordon then swept a good low ball into the area but no one was able to meet it in a Stags' shirt.
 
Stags momentum paid off and they were level after 50 minutes.
 
Akins provided the assist, on the right side of the area, for James Gale to knock home from close range.
 
The 20-year-old was a whisker away from a second goal on 56 minutes when he headed over from Gordon's inviting cross.
 
Wallace missed a golden opportunity when he blasted a 12 yard effort over the bar on the stroke of the hour as Stags looked to pen City inside their own half.
 
Mansfield continued to press and visiting goalkeeper van Sas had to get behind a stooping header from McLaughlin after Maris crossed from the right.
 
On 68 minutes, Nigel Clough made a double change when James Perch and George Lapslie were replaced by Stephen McLaughlin and Lucas Akins.
 
With 17 minutes remaining, Will Swan came on for Kieran Wallace and Anthony Hartigan took the place of Ollie Clarke.
 
Bowery powered down the left on 78 minutes, beating one man, before seeing his shot blocked by a City defender.
 
Stags struck the decisive goal on 84 minutes.
 
Hewitt, well forward in a Stags' attack, pulled it back from the goal line, and Lapslie was on hand to poke the ball in the bottom right corner of the goal to give Stags the upper hand.
 
Flinders ensured Mansfield's win with a superb one-footed save to stop Borges' effort, who was clean through on goal before City's chief tormenter, bent a brilliant effort against the bar in stoppage time. But Stags held on for the win.
STAGS: Flinders, Gordon, Hewitt, Harbottle, McLaughlin (Perch 68), Clarke (Hartigan 73), Wallace (Swan 73), Maris, Akins (Lapslie 68), Gale, Bowery.
UNUSED SUBS: Pym, Quinn, Boateng
CITY: Van Sas, Larios, Burns, Katongo, Taylor (Galvez 60), Charles, Mebude, Breckin, Dickson (Oboavwoduo 60), Bobb (O'Reilly 45), Borges
UNUSED SUBS: Alleline, McNamara, Smith, Ndala, 
 
REFEREE: Ross Joyce
 
ATTENDANCE: 1,804 (64 away)

 


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