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Match Reports

Report: Mansfield V The Imps

6 March 2018

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Ollie Palmer rescued a late point for The Imps after a pulsating derby at the One Call Stadium. The former Mansfield Town striker netted in the final minute of the game in front of the travelling City supporters, it was no more than the away side deserved despite being behind for much of the second half.

Joel Byrom thought he had netted the winner with his goal early in the second half but the resiliance of the City side shone through and the late strike from Palmer brought joyous scenes.

The atmosphere at kick off was white hot, the hosts welcoming their new manager, while the Imps were backed by the now customary noisy travelling support as some 1,700 supporters made their way over from Lincoln in a sell out away end behind Ryan Allsop’s goal in the first half.

City looked good in possession and typically combative without the ball in midfield. Chances weren’t forthcoming in front of goal early on but all the positive play was coming from City as the movement in midfield kept them on the front foot. A dangerous centre from Sam Habergham caused panic in the Mansfield area when Matt Rhead leapt with Conrad Logan, the ball was only half cleared before Lee Frecklington turned the ball back to Rhead who diverted the ball goalwards but Mal Benning managed to hook the ball clear. 

Danny Rose was the threat for the home side, the leading scorer was winning his fair share of headers, and he was to get the first shot away for the hosts, but his effort went some way over the frame of the goal. Jordan Williams ghosted past three Mansfield players but his cross was blocked at the last, moments later The Stags broke in similar fashion this time Eardley was there to deny Kane Hemmings a shooting opportunity. Mansfield took heart from that chance and Hemmings then set up Alex McDonald but the midfielder hammered his low shot off target, as the game really opened up.

Krystian Pearce slid the ball into the channel for CJ Hamilton to cross, his low centre was expertly dealt with by Luke Waterfall who was put under substantial pressure by Rose. City rallied and Scott Wharton delivered a ball right onto the head of Rhead, his knockdown to Williams was fired towards goal and a wicked deflection took it past Logan but it squirmed agonisingly wide of the target, Waterfall then tested the reactions of Logan with a wicked shot from outside the box, The Stags’ keeper did well to quickly get down to save.  Rhead was a constant threat for his former employers who were struggling to deal with his aerial presence, Williams almost profited from another flick on from the number nine.

Rose lashed another effort over as the home side again broke at speed, but then the ball was back in the Mansfield defensive third. The game was being played at breakneck speed and all eyes were glued to the action.  Michael Bostwick tried his luck from distance after a City corner was cleared to around the 25 yard mark, but it looped just over the top. Williams had another shot on target as his pace and movement continued to create openings ahead of the break with City arguably on top but the teams went in at half time on level terms.

Half Time

Mansfield Town 0 The Imps 0

Kicking towards the travelling supporters City were on the front foot from the restart and a swift attack down the Mansfield right almost bore fruit, Rhead got ahead of his marker but couldn’t turn home. The Imps were to rue that missd opportunity when Mansfield were to get themselves in front moments later. A cross from the right by Hayden White was met by half time sub, Joel Byrom who headed home from close range.

City were keen to respond swiftly and after winning a corner Green almost scored with a spectacular overhead kick, the ball was nodded back into the danger area from the corner, Rhead flicked on and his strike partner tried to somehow turn home but the ball flew over the top.

The Imps continued to press but chances in front of goal were limited, the home defence were holding strong with the final ball just eluding the visitors. Two substitutions in relatively quick succession with Danny Rowe and Harry Anderson coming on and a change of formation as City looked to shake things up as the game went into the final twenty minutes or so.

Hamilton went on a lung busting run down the left for the hosts before cutting inside and shooting low, but Allsop saved comfortably. The Imps broke at speed, Anderson linked with Bostwick, he fed Habergham but White blocked with City still looking dangerous, Rowe then had a shot charged down as the away fans tried to suck the ball into the goal in front of them.

The home supporters were getting a little frustrated at how they couldn’t keep possession with City hassling and harassing them off the ball but crucially they still held the lead. Another former Mansfield Town player, Ollie Palmer, came on as the game went into the final ten minutes. The home side were relieved to see Anderson hook over from close range as the home side couldn’t clear a bouncing ball at the back post, with City still foraging deep into the Stag’s half. But with moments of the game to go the equaliser was to come, a deep ball to the back post by Eardley was nodded back into the danger zone and PALMER was there to smash home in front of the Imps’ supporters.

Full Time

Mansfield Town 1 The Imps 1

Mansfield Town

1          Conrad LOGAN

2          Rhys BENNETT

3          Mal BENNING

5          Krystian PEARCE

7          Alex McDONALD

10       Paul ANDERSON

16       Hayden WHITE

22       CJ HAMILTON

23       Jane HEMMINGS

25       Adam KING

32       Danny ROSE


12       Bobby OLEJNIK

6          Zander DIAMOND

8          Jacob MELLIS

9          Lee ANGOL

11       Will ATKINSON (80’ for Anderson)

15       Jimmy SPENCER (76’ for Hemmings)

26       Joel BYROM (46’ for King)

Goal: Byrom 49’

Booking: King 11’ Bennett 82’

Red Card: Bennett 90’

The Imps

22       Ryan ALLSOP

3          Sam HABERGHAM

5          Luke WATERFALL

6          Scott WHARTON

9          Matt RHEAD

10       Matt GREEN

14       Jordan WILLIAMS

16       Michael BOSTWICK


23       Neal EARDLEY

30       Alex WOODYARD


1          Paul FARMAN

2          Sean LONG

4          Elliott WHITEHOUSE

7          Tom PETT

8          Ollie PALMER (81’ for Green)

24       Danny ROWE (64’ for Williams)

26       Harry ANDERSON (67’ for Frecklington)

Booking: Frecklington 22’ Bostwick 69’ Rhead 73’

Red Card: Waterfall 90’

GOAL : Palmer 90’

Referee: Graham Salisbury

Assistants: Gary Hilton & Grant Taylor

Attendance : 6.091

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