Madness, Mansfield Madness!

 Time check: 19;36 Saturday evening- been back at the house about 15minutes.

So much has happened today that I feel I need to share with you. If I neglected writing until tomorrow (Sunday – the day I usually write) I would forget most of the ideas that are swimming around my head right now. Hence why I’ve just taken one final drink of my McDonald’s milkshake, and begun to write.

Most of you will know the result, a 1-0 defeat in the dying minutes after some clumsy, lazy, slack (add your own description) defending lead to their goal, right in front of the Stags faithful. Gary Mills became the second Stags player in two games to be shown a straight red card for what seems like nothing- I’d love to know what happened – I couldn’t see it fully. On the other hand, the referee did dismiss Rushden’s player at the same time – so the teams remained numerically balanced at least!

Blair Sturrock; Impressive! (Photo By Dan Westwell)

Blair Sturrock; Impressive! (Photo By Dan Westwell)

Blair Sturrock made his first start since signing, partnering Duffy upfront. They were working well together, and continued to even though Sturrock was forced to take a wider role after following Mill’s dismissal. We brought Stevie (The Rat) Istead on- he performed well and I personally felt that we could have taken the game and the points; but again we lacked that crucial finishing touch! Bad times.

As ever, I am not one for match reporting in these blogs, that’s not the point of them- the point is to try involve you in the life of a Stags fan, which leads me to probably one of the funniest trips I’ve had in a while!

After getting the lifts sorted out for the trip to Field Mill (usually I get a lift from Stace because my Dad’s not going to the game, this time he was so she got a lift off us!), We headed down to Field Mill to find the car park taken over by men in florescent jackets and lots of people with all sorts of instruments – my dad informed me there’s some sort of band contest happening! To our amazement we were turned away from the car park- now I know how it feels, after turning so many people away on a match day!

After a crisis moment of where we could park – we headed for a secret location (B&Q), parked near the little ramp that leads to the pavement so we could make a quick getaway if the gates were locked when we returned! Well spotted by Stace, who had the getaway plan thought of before I could put my coat on!

Now back at Field Mill, we were all treated to some free warm-up music, my dad (A former music conductor) struggled to keep his hands in his pockets! We all stood on the roadside like we were going on a school trip, waiting for the buses to arrive! When they did, money was taken and we were ready for the off; but not before some classic Nigel jokes, all at the expense of the band who were ‘warming up’ virtually in front of us! It’s not their fault they were dressed as the cast of the cult TV Series Gladiators!

Whilst on the road, the classic alphabet-related football game cropped up – playing various versions of it! I joined the game where everyone as a combined team were trying to guess five ex-Stags players beginning with a certain letter. The game moved on to everyone taking turns to name a football club with a different letter, we got to “H” I think before we rolled into the Rushden car park about half 12! To the pub! We’ll continue the game later!

We all know what happened with the game, so by the power of my writing…. it’s back to bus, heading home. After some downed heads and a customary silence, the fun and games began once again! I won’t bore you with the details, we played various versions of the game, introducing new rules each time – the final game lead to the most controversial moments since Carlton Palmer decided to take up football management; Ladies & Gents I give you…. “Martin Bird; International Football Teamsgate!”

 The laughter and such things continued until we arrived back in Mansfield. Driving down Quarry lane we saw the previously mentioned cast of Gladiators practising for the final (which I believe is happening as I type so good luck, wolf, hunter, cobra, ace, lightning and crew!)

As for the football, Oxford next up – a real tough game! Please get down to the Mill on Tuesday evening and show your support to the lads. Please don’t let your heads drop – I am fully confident David Holdsworth can drag us out of the gauntlet and through the travelator (Gladiators reference, sorry!). As I said to the Chad’s Tim Morriss while walking from the ground – we put up a good fight, and were subject to some strange refereeing, and some plain bad luck. Another dart hole in the dart board! And in his words…. we’ll win Tuesday, that’s Mansfield!

Cheers for reading, I’m off to watch X-factor (well, what remains of it), followed by sorting my photos out for the Stags fan Facebook page.

 See you Tuesday

 Craig

 “Mansfield Town FC; Crazy”

And Now It’s Sunday;

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thanks again for reading, have a great week. 

Louis Briscoe Weaves Past The Rushden Defence, Can He Do The Same Tuesday? (Photo By Me)

Louis Briscoe Weaves Past The Rushden Defence, Can He Do The Same Tuesday? (Photo By Me)

I’ve had time to freshen myself up with a cup of tea, I’ve watched all the video interviews post match, I’ve listened to “The Sunday Supplement”, I’ve posted all the news stories on the Facebook page – you get the picture. With Oxford next to visit Field Mill, a lot of people don’t seem to rate our chances. But I think we can bring them down to earth (someone has to). We will win if we start with Stevie Istead. I thought he has performed well when making the rare apperance from the bench and should now get the chance to prove himself. I also believe we should start with Blair Sturrock again, hopefully partnering Duffy if he’s fit enough. Get the ball on the floor, keep the shape and use the witdh that we have in Briscoe & Williams. But I’m no football manager (yet!) and have faith in any side the gaffer puts in. Yes Mansfield are going through a rough patch, but Tuesday night is when it should all change- see you at Field Mill.

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