A Perfect Return To League Action As Stags Record A Fine 3-1 Win Over Crawley Town
After over two weeks without a game, Mansfield Town returned to league action with a fantastic 3-1 away victory over Crawley Town to keep themselves firmly in the hunt for automatic promotion.
In their first game in December, the Stags took all three points at the Broadfield Stadium with three good goals from Baily Cargill, Davis Keillor-Dunn and George Maris.
The aforementioned Cargill put Mansfield Town 1-0 up in the 12th minute as Rhys Oates’ cross found the defender at the near post and he fired a bullet header into the back of the net.
In the 36th minute, a free-kick was awarded in Crawley’s favour with the ball set to be sent into the box, however, before that happened, referee Scott Simpson pointed to the spot following a tussle in the box.
Danilo Oris-Dadomo stepped up to take the spot kick and blasted his effort down the middle of the goal to level the game up at 1-1.
In the second-half, the Stags stepped up their game and scored two goals within the space of eight minutes to fire themselves into a 3-1 lead.
Firstly, Stephen Quinn’s pinpoint cross found Keillor-Dunn who side-footed the ball into the bottom corner to put the amber and blues in front once again.
Eight minutes later, Quinn was involved once again as he passed the ball to Lucas Akins whose shot was deflected into the path of Maris with the midfielder finding the back of the net with a fine finish and earning the Stags a fantastic 3-1 win.
Mansfield Town manager Nigel Clough made four changes from the side that drew 2-2 with Tranmere Rovers close to three weeks ago. The suspended Louis Reed and the injured Aaron Lewis missed out with Stephen Quinn and Calum Macdonald dropping to the bench.
Baily Cargill filled in at the back whilst Lewis Brunt joined Ollie Clarke and George Maris in midfield with Callum Johnson coming in at wing-back.
Crawley Town manager Scott Lindsey stuck with the same side that got a 2-1 win over Colchester United last weekend as Luca Ashby-Hammond started in goal with a backline of Jay Williams, Dion Conroy and Laurence Maguire.
A midfield five saw Kellan Gordon and Nick Tsaroulla deployed as wing-backs with Liam Kelly, Will Wright and Ben Gladwin as the middle three.
Danilo Orsi-Dadomo and Adam Campbell were deployed as the two strikers for the Red Devils looking to do damage to the Stags defence.
The hosts looked to start brightly as a ball was flashed across the Mansfield goal, however, no one in red could connect with the ball and divert it goalwards.
Clough’s side looked to respond as Keillor-Dunn found the run of Rhys Oates but the forward was adjudged to be in an offside position.
Another chance for the Stags as the ball reached Akins who flashed his header wide of Ashby-Hammond’s goal.
In the 12th minute, Oates fired in a wonderful cross which was met by a powerful header from Cargill who fired the Stags into a 1-0 lead.
Mansfield Town continued to pile on the pressure as Keillor-Dunn saw Ashby-Hammond off his line as he pulled the trigger from inside his own half but he narrowly missed the target.
The forward was once again involved moments later as he found Oates with his curling effort going over the bar.
Just after the half-hour mark, the ball fell kindly for Orsi-Dadomo inside the box but the forward sent an effort over from close range.
Minutes later, Crawley were awarded a penalty after a tussle inside the area before a Red Devils free-kick.
Orsi-Dadomo stepped up and redeemed himself for a missed chance a few minutes earlier as he smashed the ball home from 12 yards.
A brilliant move from the hosts saw goalkeeper Ashby-Hammond find Tsaroulla who in turn found Kelly. The midfielder passed the ball onto Orsi-Dadomo with the forward’s shot blocked.
Crawley saw an effort cannon off the crossbar as a lovely bit of play from Kelly saw him find Wright who fired his shot off the bar.
A minute after that wonderful chance for the Red Devils, the Stags went in front through top goalscorer Keillor-Dunn. Quinn’s wonderful cross found the forward at the back post as he side-footed the ball into the bottom corner.
Mansfield Town looked to continue the onslaught as Maris sprayed a beautiful ball to Oates who twisted and turned before firing an effort straight at Ashby-Hammond.
However, minutes later, Maris would get on the scoresheet as he was alert to fire the ball into the back of the net following Akins’ blocked effort.
Williams was then shown two yellow cards within the space of a couple of seconds following a challenge on Quinn as Crawley were reduced to 10 men.
Ashby-Hammond was forced into another save as Keillor-Dunn looked for his second of the afternoon but the Crawley shot-stopper made a good stop to deny him.
Mansfield Town were able to hold onto their two-goal cushion and earned a brilliant 3-1 win to propel themselves up to fourth in League Two with the victory.
The loss for Crawley Town saw them fall into the bottom half of the league but are still well within the hunt for the Play-Offs only two points behind AFC Wimbledon in the final Play-Off place.
Both sides are in action next week as Crawley Town take on the aforementioned Dons at home on Friday night whilst Sutton United welcome Mansfield Town to the VBS Community Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Crawley Town’s XI: Ashby-Hammond, Williams, Conroy, Maguire, Gordon (Darcy 74′), Kelly, Wright, Gladwin, Tsaroulla (Adeyemo 74), Orsi-Dadomo, Campbell (Lolos 74′)
Mansfield Town’s XI: Pym, Johnson, Flint, Cargill, Bowery, Brunt (McLaughlin 80), Maris (Williams 90+1′) Clarke (Quinn 46′), Keillor-Dunn (Macdonald 90′), Oates, Akins (O’Toole 90+1′)