Wednesday, 19 August 2015

AFC Mansfield 1 v Rossington Main 1 - NCEL Div 1

Wednesday 19th August 2015
Toolstation NCEL Division 1
at the Forest Town Arena
AFC Mansfield (0) 1 Craig Mitchell 71
Rossington Main (0) 1 Montelle Kamara 68
Admission £4. Programme £1. Attendance 77
AFC Mansfield:
Jason White, Brad Wilson, Mark Dudley, Grant Allott, Chris Timons (C), Danny Naylor, Phil Buxton, Dean Rick, Craig Mitchell, Jimmy Ghaichem
Subs - Brett Lucas, Eden Homer, Declan Brewin, Perry Marriott, Joe Cheeseman
Rossington Main
Simon Dye, Tom Harte, Phil Blunt, Jack Johnson, Josh Bucknall, Jon Baird, Montelle Kamara, Shaun Pendleton (C), Leigh Hutchinson, Callum Wiffen, Jason Stokes
Subs - Marcel Chipamaunga, Danny Marquis, Lee Holmes, Joe Glover, Jordan Woodhall
One for the purists, end to end flowing football... reminiscent of the Cruyff era Holland team, entertainment par excellence, an action packed dramatic white knuckle ride and veritable thrill seekers paradise... just a few phrases  you wouldn't hear used to describe tonight's stalemate, played on on a drizzly and grim night at the Forest Town Arena.
But the non stop banter that flowed between both teams followers and the neutrals, watching the game from up on the balcony, was first rate.
If the 'Rosso' manager Lee Holmes had set out to crowd out his opponents, soak up a wave of attacks and then hit Mansfield on the break, then hey ho! Mission accomplished.
And that isn't meant as a criticism to Rossington, because the Main lads worked damn hard tonight to repel and frustrate Rudy Funk's side.
If you give players of the calibre that AFC Mansfield have in their ranks a yard of space, they'll exploit it and will be a match for any team in this division... especially on home turf.
But Rossington aren't half bad either and possibly they could have been slightly less cautious at times, because they too have one or two potential match winners in their ranks as well.
A man dressed as a red bull, wearing
 a Superman dressing gown.
By rule of thumb, if you endeavour to win all of your home games and take at least a draw on the road, then you'll be in with a shout when the business end of the season comes along.
Both of these sides will most likely finish in the top half of the table, so possibly the lack of any actual 'hammer and tongs' stuff, was borne out of the two managers showing each other equal amounts of due respect.
Too much respect possibly?
Hmm, it's not really my place to comment on that, when all is said and done, my job isn't results based.
Jambo. Tool!
Following a slog of a first half, Montelle Kamara, somewhat against the run of play, finally smashed home the opening goal on 68 minutes after Simon Dye, the visitors keeper had kept the Bulls at bay thus far, mainly through his handling of a succession of telling crosses that he looked capable of plucking out of the air all night if he needed to, as Mansfield became more and more frustrated at not being able to find a way through the compact Rossington defence.
When they had found their range, close marking forced their attackers to rush several chances which ended up being well off target. Keeping their Hearts supporting goalkeeping coach and chief ballboy Graeme Rodger busy along the way.
Text or call between 11.30pm and 5am only ;-)
Craig Mitchell forced an equaliser three minutes later, when the smallest of gaps appeared in the Main's rearguard.
Rossington almost squandered their hard earned point in the last minute when Ryan Williams went to ground under a heavy challenge in the goal area, but the referee Colin Bailey waved the Bulls penalty appeals away.
And a game dominated by strategy, hard graft, rigid organisation and miserable weather which no doubt impacted on the attendance figure, finished one apiece.
FT: AFC Mansfield 1 v Rossington Main 1