Full Time Score Bury 2-2 Mansfield Town
Competition Sky Bet League Two
Venue Gigg Lane
Stags Goal Scorers Danny Rose, Matt Preston
Attendance 3,880 (640)
Craig Priest writes…
Another game passes and it’s another point of frustration as the Stags again surrender victory and have to settle for a point, again sparking the comments from those wanting David Flitcroft to swap the training ground for the job centre.
Like the rest of us I’m fed up and frustrated with drawing especially from winning positions but like I wrote weeks ago, what difference will changing the manager actually make? It’s laughable it’s even considered when we’ve lost ONE game this season, ONE.
I don’t care about his record which includes the last twelve games of last season – I care only about us under him this season. Yet again I feel the need to reiterate a point which many people over look – I firmly believe (and will continue too until told otherwise by the people that matter) that our projected budget has been hampered by the Conmen of Peterborough.
Sold a vision, the powers that be expected league one crowds, league one broadcast revenue, league one sponsorships and have had to cut cloth accordingly leading to a smaller squad and a mid-table budget.
THE PLAYERS have the ability and potential to go beyond that as we’ve seen, but it is also THE PLAYERS who have to take full responsibility for the in-game failings – what do you expect Flitcroft to do? Run onto the pitch and flick home a CJ cross to get a second goal? Or perhaps throw himself at every shot incoming from the opposition?
In comparison to this stage last season (date 7th October) I believe we are in a much better shape, and when you take into account last season we were “champions elect” – it reaffirms my belief that Flitcroft is taking us forward.
OK at this point last season (date) we were inconsistent, had no fight, no togetherness and no desire to live up to our so called billing – this year apart from the odd spell, we’ve looked a really dangerous side but without that killer touch of the second and third goal, have been punished!
Our inconsistency last season really took its toll and in October we didn’t win a single game and to be fair, never looked like winning either – I don’t see that this time around, I see a side capable of doing real damage if we sort out this sitting back mentality and see a game out.
I felt yesterday we were tested for the first time properly against a strong team who should be playing in the division above and yet despite being under pressure for prolonged spells still created chances – we even took one of them and couldn’t take three points away, it’s just our luck!
Is Flitcroft totally blameless? No, but he feels it as much as us – again when the seven minutes went up he was screaming for us to play higher up! Should he have taken Danny Rose off? No, unless of course he had a knock, in which case fair enough – he’s inform and with no real backup, do you REALLY risk losing him for three/four weeks?
It’s like pulling teeth, painful! But with a bit of gas and air and a few tweaks here and there we WILL be just fine – we go again, we might be shaken and frustrated but we're not getting battered 6-0 every week, we're not dead and buried.
An unchanged line-up was named for the third game in a row however Craig Davies was again absent, picking up another knock.
Bury started well and Mansfield were under pressure from the first whistle, yet managed to grab the opening goal ten minutes in as former Bury man Danny Rose pounced on a mistake from Joe Murphy to roll into the net, seemingly not celebrating as he grabbed the games opener.
Murphy then redeemed his error five minutes later as Hamilton fed Khan, the attacking midfielders shot palmed away by the Bury glovesman, who could only watch on moments later as Benning leaped highest to nod Rose’s cross wide of the target.
Skipper Pearce nodded away a Shakers cross as they looked to get back in the game before the Stags were dealt a blow as Neal Bishop picked up his fifth yellow card of the campaign, meaning he’ll miss next weekend’s game through suspension.
On the half hour Rose came close to adding a second as Khan sent him through on goal, the marksman fired wide of the target, seven minutes later he was involved again, this time heading Bishop’s cross wide.
After the break Mansfield set about finding the killer second goal with Rose and Khan both coming close, but on 55 minutes the hosts drew level as the experienced Nicky Maynard acrobatically turned home.
Mansfield then got the lead back on 73 minutes as Elsnik’s pin point corner found Matt Preston at the back post, who thundered in a header infront of the Stags faithful.
The Stags then set about finding a third and had chances through Elsnik, Rose and substitute Mellis, but the clock ran down without the Stags finding the net.
The fourth official then held up seven minutes of additional time with the Stags leading 2-1, Bobby Olejnik made a fine block with his legs but deep into the seven minutes the Stags sat back and invited pressure, an invite Maynard took – grabbing a gut wrenching leveller seconds from the whistle.
FULL TIME: Bury 2-2 Mansfield Town
STAGS [3-4-1-2]: Bobby Olejnik, Matt Preston, Krystian Pearce ©, Ryan Sweeney, CJ Hamilton, Timi Elsnik, Neal Bishop, Mal Benning, Otis Khan (Jacob Mellis 67), Tyler Walker (Will Atkinson 61), Danny Rose (Calum Butcher 83)
Unused Subs: Conrad Logan, Lewis Gibbens, Omari Sterling-James, Jordan Graham
Referee: Scott Oldham
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