Pathetic Mansfield Town somehow let a one goal lead be over turned last night, as they crashed out of the FA Trophy in the first round to lower league Matlock Town.
The Gladiators lived up to there name, battling tough conditions to maintain there dream of a cup run, but all credit to them because in the end they should have won by a much larger scoreline - bossing the second half hitting the bar twice after Lewis McMahon's 50th minute strike had cancelled out Junior Daniel's 21st minute free kick.
Mansfield had made six changes from Saturday's 1-1 draw and were in control in the first half, however the second half was a completely different story as Stags fell apart, Matlock flourished, helped by Gary Roberts' dismissal on 76 minutes when he picked up his second booking of the match.
Despite the numerical advantage Matlock couldn't take advantage, that was until the final minute of the match with Extra Time looming. Mansfield were at full blame, Exodus Geohaghon's woeful positioning allowing Massiah McDonald to pounce and squirm a shot beneath Shane Redmond to seal the encounter.
Mansfield were woeful, there are simply no excuses - credit to Matlock who once more, pulled off an upset against the Stags.
After Tuesday evening's fantastic 3-0 win over Macclesfield, the Stags stumbled once more yesterday as the football and performance against minnowers Matlock Town matched the weather: wet, miserable, frustrating and boring.
Taking a break from league action to focus on the FA Trophy and then FA cup on Saturday, the Stags were nearly pegged behind on six minutes when John Thompson pulled back the lively Massaiah McDonald in the area. Shane Redmond pulled off the heroics once more as he palmed away Lewis McMahon's spot kick and then produced a tremendous reflex save to deny James Ashmore on the follow up.
Player Assistant Boss, Skipper and joint youth team Manager Adam Murray then put Mansfield in the lead on 24 minutes, scooping in the loose ball after Jon Kennedy had fumbled Louis Briscoe's driven effort.
Matlock were never going to role over and keen for a repeat of their 1976 FA Cup win over Stags, pulled level on 37 minutes when McMahon atoned for his spot kick miss, driving home underneath Redmond following an acute flick from McDonald.
Throughout the second half both sides had chances to seal the tie however neither took them, meaning the sides meet again on Tuesday evening at Matlock's Causeway Lane ground, 7.45pm kick off - Commentary details TBC.
Due to an error with our 3G Stick yesterday we we're unable to broadcast regular updates on the match itself - since pre-season we have been waiting for Takeover to replace the original 3G Stick after an error at Leamington, the 3G stick used recently has been a pay as you go low quality one. The failure yesterday was NOT Mansfield Matters fault - we appoliogise for any inconvienance caused.
Goals from Matt Green, Lindon Meikle and Luke Jones finally ended Mansfield's away hoodoo last night as an accomplished performance saw classy Stags demolish Macclesfield by three goals to nil.
Paul Cox made three changes with Geohaghon suspended and Howell injured, Luke Jones and Adam Murray were restored to the line up whilst Matt Green's late goal against Luton proved enough for him to warrant a start at the expense of Nick Wright.
Cox's faith in Green was rewarded with six minutes of the first half remaining, Stags finally breaking the deadlock after numerous attempts when Lance Cronin fumble Chris Clements' corner. Green on hand to cushion the ball home.
Macclesfield threatened on numerous occastions but were denied by the excellent Shane Redmond every time, Mansfield grabbing some breathing space on 65 minutes when Lindon Meikle thundered home from close range to cap a flowing counter attacking move.
With three minutes to go Luke Jones rounded things off, outstanding at the heart of the defence throughout he showed a fearsome presence at the other end, rising high at the back post to nod in Clements late corner. Jones' first goal since re-joining Mansfield in the summer sealing Mansfield's first away league win since 18th August.
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Matt Green finally broke his goal drought of roughly 720 minutes of football to earn Mansfield a deserved point against Luton at the One Call Stadium yesterday.
The deadly hit man struck with six minutes remaining after coming off the bench to pull the Stags back level after a brace from Andre Gray had overturned Ben Hutchinson's eighth minute opener.
Mansfield were strong from the off and should have been two maybe three up after Hutchinson's header from captain Geohaghon's throw, Nick Wright, Louis Briscoe, Anthony Howell and Chris Clements all coming close.
A defensive slip from Geohaghon was matched with poor positioning from Shane Redmond on 25 minutes, Andre Gray pulling Luton level from the tightest of angles. Gray then put Luton ahead after the break, slotting through the legs of Redmond to cap an excellent counter attack for the hatters with 62 played.
Luton had never beaten Mansfield in a league match at Field Mill/The One Call Stadium throughout the history of the clubs, Shane Redmond made a smart save to prevent Jake Howells from making it 3-1 late on, Matt Green then powering home from a yard after John Thompson and Chris Clements had worked a neat free kick.
The point undeserved for Stags really as it should have been three, that said the balance of the game just about justifies a fair result, a really god advert for conference football.
Shane Redmond emerged with heroic status last night as a man of the match performance from the Irish Gloves-Man included a vital save in the penalty shootout, with Stags eventually overcoming minnowers Slough 4-1 in the great football lottery.
The Stags enjoyed an excellent first half and should have been at least three up, Nick Wright denied what looked a blatant penalty on 22 at first view before James Warrington kept out two excellent efforts from Louis Briscoe in as many minutes. Stags needed a helping hand from the livley hosts, Dave Woosley credited with the final touch on the stroke of half time as he diverted Lee Beevers' cross into his own net under immense pressure from the dominant Geohaghon, the centre half beaten narrowly to the Man Of the Match award.
Slough upped there game in the second half whilst Mansfield emerged a shadow of their dominant first half selves, Louis Briscoe was one of many to distribute poorly throughout the second half. The hosts leveled on 65 minutes when Stuart Swift sent a thunderous free kick crashing against the bar, Mansfield failed to react at Nathan Bowden-Hasse nodded home to the delight of the home support.
Danny Burnell should have put Slough ahead minutes later as Stags fell to peices, however late on improved and saw Substitute Jake Speight go close twice before the match headed into extra time.
Both tired and created little in the first 15 minutes, the second was a very headed different story - Geohaghon and Bowden-Hasse both getting booked for flailing arms on 109 before premier league referee Andy D'Urso remarkable showed Stags skipper John Dempster a straight red card three minutes later. Dempster grabbing hold of a private area after taking a clear on the DVD elbow to the face which went unpunished.
With ten men Mansfield hung on and shootout was needed, Exodus Geohaghon winning the toss for Mansfield who succsesfully converted all four of their spot kicks via the boot of Clements, Briscoe, Rhead and Speight - the later netting the winning penalty. Slough had less luck, netting their first before Shane Redmond expertly turned away a well hit spot kick from Ollie Burgess - Sean Sonner blazed over the Rebels third making it fairly easy for Speight to finish the job from 12 yards.
Both myself and fellow broadcasters all suffered internet failure in extra time and for penalty's - myself and Martin Shaw have audio recorded bar the majority of the first half of extra time, highlights of which you can now see below.
The match was also filmed and highlights will be available soon. We appologise for any inconveinace caused.
Extra Time Highlights (Commentary From Craig Priest & Martin Shaw)
On this page you can find a mini-report plus downloadable audio highlights after each home match, plus team & stat sheets and occasional extended or full audio