Saturday, 13 August 2011

Mansfield Town 1 v Bath City 1 - BSBP

Richie Sutton and John Thompson were both missing from the Stags line up today, they're still unable to play because of the injuries they received due to the over the top recklessness of Ilkeston's Gary Ricketts in the pre season friendly at the New Manor Ground on August 3rd.
It was announced yesterday, in a club statement by Mansfield Town, that they will be perusing legal action against Ilkeston Football Club.
As one of those who was present at the game, I don't really see what other option Mansfield Town have regarding this matter ... given the seriousness of several incidents that occurred on the night and the failure of Ilkeston Football Club or the referee Mr Jim Thornhill to control Gary Ricketts.
Note, Jim Thornhill was also the referee at all the other pre season games played at Ilkeston.
Club Statement:
We can confirm that we are taking legal action against Ilkeston Town Football Club after an incident which led to our defender John Thompson requiring over 40 stitches to a broken nose.
Thompson, 29, was in hospital after an incident involving Ilkeston's Gary Ricketts which took place during a friendly match at the New Manor Ground on Wednesday 03 August 2011.
Fellow defenders Martin Riley and Ritchie Sutton were also taken to hospital following challenges from Ricketts.
After dialogue between the clubs, Mansfield Town Chairman John Radford has since seen the match DVD and has decided to issue legal proceedings.

Saturday 13th August - at Field Mill
Blue Square Bet Premier
Mansfield Town (1) 1 (Paul Connor 3)
Bath City (1) 1 (Adam Connolly 34)
Admission £2 (when presenting 2011 FA Trophy Final ticket stub)
Programme £3. Attendance 3,997 (inc. 80 from Bath)
Mansfield Town: Marriott, Bell, Riley, Naylor, O'Neill, Todd, Worthington, Murray, Briscoe, Connor (Dyer 70), Green (Meikle 76). Subs Not Used: Redmond, Stevenson, Wood.
Bath City: Garner, Stonehouse, Preece, Jones, Simpson, Russell (Murray 74), Connolly, Burnell, Watkins, Hogg, Phillips (Cook 90). Subs Not Used: Matthews, Rollo, Webb.
Prior to kick off a minutes silence was observed in memory of Trevor Mitchell, a steward and safety officer at Field Mill for over 30 years and Jimmy Goodfellow, a former Mansfield Town player who had featured in their famous FA Cup run of 1969
You can pledge sponsorship at Field Mill for how often the match ball vanishes
through the hole in the roof in the disused Bishop Street Stand over the course
of the season ... and it does from time to time

Kick off was delayed by 10 minutes as the crowd of almost 4,000 caused congestion at the turnstiles.
To be frank though, the main problem once people were in, was misinformation from the club itself.
Today there was a special offer available, whereby anybody presenting their FA Trophy Final ticket stub from last season at the Field Mill ticket office, could buy a ticket for today's game for £2 (just as well all 15,000 who travelled to Wembley to support the Stags didn't decide to show up then!).
The confusion arose from conflicting information given to stewards, turnstile operators and ticket office staff, in so much as ... on purchasing the tickets we were told, 'They're numbered, but that's just so we don't oversell, you can sit anywhere", but on the gate (and by the stewards) we were told "Sit anywhere except for seats that have reserved stickers, they're season ticket holders seats" which was only fair to season ticket holders ... however at 2.50pm there was a tannoy announcement that people had to sit in the seats that corresponded with the number on their ticket and the stewards suddenly had their hands full with late comers asking people to move rather than just filling up empty seats.
I was in 'my seat' but the friends I was at the game with weren't.
Thankfully there were some empty seats in a section of the stand that is usually closed off as a cost cutting measure, i.e. less seated areas available equates to less stewards that need paying for, so we moved over there to avoid getting involved in any of the disputes that were arising over who was sitting where ... 'owt for a quiet life me.
It's good to see a decent crowd in the ground and surely that is what matters.
What the hell were people getting worked up about when they're watching Conference football for two quid anyway?
Either way, it gave me the opportunity to take pictures from different angles.
The big game 'tourists' and bargain hunters were, in the main, the one's who were having to bugger about at the start of the game, the regulars all knew there would be chaos in advance, because there always is when there is a big crowd at Field Mill and it always follows the same pattern too. It's virtually become a Field Mill tradition over the years.
A perfect start for Mansfield ...
The game was only three minutes old when Paul Connor headed home a cross from Martin Bell to score the first goal of the Stags 2011-12 Blue Square Bet Premier season.
Reece Styche of Forest Green Rovers, had scored the first BSBP goal of the season, when he put his side 1-0 ahead with a 1-1 draw against Stockport County last night.
Connor almost added a second goal four minutes later too, but the City keeper Glyn Garner blocked that one.
Bath had a couple of chances at the other end, but the Stags were looking to consolidate their lead now.
Martin Riley rattled the post with a shot and Tom Naylor was denied twice by Garner.
On 34 minutes Lewis Hogg played Adam Connolly through and his deflected shot wrong footed Alan Marriott in the Stags goal and the score was level.
Half time 1-1
Matt Green and Connor (again) came close to putting the Stags back in front, but Glyn Garner was having none of it.
On 70 minutes Paul Cox the Stags manager replaced goalscorer Paul Connor with Ross Dyer and three minutes later withdrew Matt Green and introduced Lindon Miekle, as he switched things around in an attempt to breach Bath's stubborn rearguard.
From then on in the Stags certainly looked the liveliest of the two teams going forward, but the visitors were hard working and well organised in the final third.
With 5 minutes remaining Tom Naylor got on the end of a Matt Bell corner, but his header flew inches over the cross bar.
In the dying seconds Andy Todd got an header on target after he was set up by a neat flick from Matt Dyer, but Garner saved the effort.
Todd was pushed in the back just before he headed the ball but the referee missed it.
Those sort of decisions even themselves out over the course of a season and are part and parcel of the game.
It might have cost Mansfield a win, but in the grand scheme of things, they should have made better use of the chances they had created earlier and that is what cost them in the end.
Bath City came to town very well prepared by manager Adie Britton and will probably consider the result to be a point well won.