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24 October 2023 Venue EnviroVent Stadium Attendance

Kick off 19:45 (UK)

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English Football League - League Two

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Match Previews

Match preview - Town look to continue in winning ways as Mansfield arrive in Harrogate

23 October 2023

The 2-1 come from behind win against Colchester made it three wins on the bounce on their travels and Simon Weaver’s side will be looking to take that form into a pair of home fixtures over the next week.

Crewe are the visitors on Saturday but before then there is an equally tough test tomorrow evening when unbeaten Mansfield Town arrive at The Envirovent Stadium when Town will look to end a run of three successive defeats on home turf. 

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Our opponents  

Through 13 games the Stags are yet to taste defeat, the only unbeaten side remaining in the division and have registered eight draws so far.

They come into the game well placed, sitting in sixth position on 23 points and within striking distance of the top three and boast the best defensive record in League Two having conceded just 10 goals so far. 

Previous meetings 

Town are yet to taste defeat against Mansfield, going unbeaten in seven league and cup encounters since entering the EFL.  

Last season Town won comfortably at home, an early Alex Pattison strike followed by a double from Luke Armstrong blowing Mansfield away in the first-half to secure a 3-0 victory whilst there was a 2-1 away win at the end of the season that dashed the home sides playoff hopes. 

Simon Weaver’s side are yet to concede at home in the league in three encounters against tomorrows opponents, with last seasons win preceded by a 0-0 draw in 2021/22 and a 1-0 win in 2020/21 thanks to Aaron Martin’s volleyed strike. 

The man in charge 

Nigel Clough is the man in charge at Field Mill. After a stellar playing career for Nottingham Forest and latterly Liverpool, Manchester City and Burton Albion, as well as earning 14 England caps. 

After hanging up his boots he went into management taking Burton Albion through the divisions over the course of a decade before following his father’s path by taking the Derby County job where he is in the hot seat for four years. A brief spell at Sheffield United then followed before a return to Burton Albion.  

Clough took over at Mansfield midway through the 2020/21 season. 

Ones to watch 

Davis Keillor-Dunn is having an exceptional start to the season, notching eight goals and three assists. Midfield partner George Maris has three goals and two assists. 

Forward Lucas Akins has three goals whilst veteran Stephen Quinn has four assists from midfield. 

During the summer the club added defensive solidity in Callum Macdonald from Bristol Rovers and Aden Flint from Stoke City, both of whom have settled in well as has Baily Cargill who arrived from Forest Green Rovers. 

After a loan spell during 2022/23 ‘keeper Christie Pym made a permanent move to the club this summer and has been an ever present so far as has been defensive midfielder Louis Reed. 

History 

The Stags have spent all but one season of their long tenure in the Football League in the bottom two divisions, and apart from the 2003/04 season have spent the majority of time residing in the fourth tier since the turn of the century. 
 
They also spent five seasons in the National League following relegation in 2008 before returning in 2013 where they have remained since. They have reached the League Two play-off final since their return, losing to Newport County on penalties in the 2018/19 season and to Port Vale last season. 

Team news 
 
Simon Weaver will likely still be without both Abraham Odoh and Rod McDonald with the duo missing recent weeks through injury. 

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Match Reports

TOWN 1-4 Mansfield Town - First-half blast sees Town fall to defeat

24 October 2023

A first-half blast from Mansfield Town saw Town fall to a 4-1 defeat this evening at The Envirovent Stadium.

An early strike from Lewis Brunt ended Town’s bright start to the game but after finding their footing a quickfire brace from Lucas Akins before the break saw the visitors put themselves in the box seat at the break.

George Maris made it four midway through the second-half before Levi Sutton struck a consolation ten minutes from time but it was to no avail at Town fell to a fourth successive home defeat.

Despite victory on Saturday against Colchester United Simon Weaver opted to make three changes. Back into the starting line-up came Sam Folarin, so impressive in recent weeks, Jack Muldoon and the fit-again Rod McDonald. Josh March, Warren Burrell and James Daly all dropped to the bench.

For the visitors, who had their game at the weekend postponed due to the weather, there was just the one change to the side that defeated Notts County 4-1 in their last outing. Into the side came Lewis Brunt, at the expense of Bailley Cargill.

It was an entertaining start to the game with both sides making early inroads into the opposition defence. The Stags saw an early shot from range from Aaron Lewis flash only narrowly over whilst for Town both Matty Foulds and Matty Daly got in good positions down the left-hand side, but the final delivery on both occasions failing to find a home shirt.

The visitors struck the first blow though on eight minutes. Town failed to clear their lines from a corner and an unmarked Brunt made no mistake from ten yards out.

Only the excellence of Mark Oxley prevented Town from falling further behind on 12 minutes. Louis Reed picked up possession on the edge of the area and wasted no time in getting his shot away, only for Oxley at full stretch to tip the ball over.

Midway through the half Oxley was again alert, this time to quickly get down low to smother a shot from Lucas Akins.

Ollie Clarke then profited from hesitation amongst the Town defence to aim a shot at Oxley’s but the direction was lacking and the effort sailed harmlessly wide.

Town responded on the half-hour mark when a marauding Kayne Ramsay run from his own half to the edge of the Mansfield box ignited the crowd. He was unlucky to see his effort deflected away to safety.

Ten minutes before the break Town fell further behind. They had twice looked as though they had escaped the danger, first when Oxley saved from Davis Keillor-Dunn before Clarke struck the rebound against the post but Akins was on hand to fire home.

Less than a minute later the game was all but over. Keillor-Dunn’s shot on goal was deflected by the Town defence but straight into the path of Akins who steered home.

There were two changes for Town at the break, Abraham Odoh and Josh Falkingham coming on for Muldoon and Dean Cornelius.

The changes almost had an immediate impact when Odoh set up Daly, who beat the first man before seeing his shot deflected behind for a corner.

Odon then ghosted in beyond the backline to meet Ramsay’s cross to the far post but his header was safely dealt with by Christie Pym.

Town were certainly brighter after the break, Odoh in particular involved in several positive passages of play but for all of their effort they couldn’t fashion the clear cut chance to provide them with some semblance of hope.

The visitors meanwhile continued to threaten, breaking quickly out of nowhere to put Town on the back foot with Keillor-Dunn’s chip dropping narrowly wide of Oxley’s post.

Folarin’s pace was always a threat for the Stags defence and having moved into a more advanced position following the half-time changes he carved out an opportunity but fired over the bar.

Ramsay then saw his name go into the book when he was adjudged to have attempted to win a penalty before Callum MacDonald was shown a yellow card for dissent.

Akins was denied the hat-trick with twenty minutes remaining when Oxley turned away his powerful shot at goal from just inside the penalty area.

The Stags were not to be denied though when Maris fired home with fifteen minutes remaining when he slotted home coolly from Keillor-Dunn’s pass.

The goal saw a trio of changes from Nigel Clough with Callum Johnson, James Gale and Hiram Boateng for Lewis, Maris and Callum MacDonald before Luke Armstrong and Josh March were introduced for Daly and Folarin.

Keillor-Dunn was inches away from adding a fifth with only a strong hand from Oxley turning his shot away, with the midfielder withdrawn shortly after following a showing of immense quality.

Town grabbed a goal with ten minutes remaining when Sutton fired home from distance off the undersisde of the bar which was reward for a brighter showing after the break but it was little more than consolation.

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