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Club News

A look at the opposition: Mansfield Town

10 October 2023

Club News

A look at the opposition: Mansfield Town

10 October 2023

It’s matchday two for Rovers in the EFL Trophy and Rovers face a journey to Sky Bet League Two’s only unbeaten side, Mansfield Town.

The trip to the One Call Stadium will be the second meeting between the sides this season following a 2-2 draw in South Yorkshire which saw Joe Ironside open his account and Tom Nixon score a stunner. 

Since that date at the Eco-Power Stadium, Mansfield have won five and drawn six from 11 matches – scoring 13 times in the process. 

LAST TIME OUT  

Mansfield Town 0 AFC Wimbledon 0 

Sky Bet League Two, Saturday, October 7, 2023 

Line-up: Pym, Cargill, Brunt, Flint, Bowery (Johnson 70), Maris (Clarke 46), Reed, Lewis (Boateng 46), Keillor-Dunn, Akins (Gale 71), Swan (MacDonald 71). 

THE MANAGER 

Son of legendary manager Brian, Nigel Clough enjoyed a stellar playing career at the top of English football. 

He made over 600 senior appearances for Nottingham Forest, Liverpool, Manchester City and finally Burton Albion and also won 14 caps for England. 

In management, Clough has overseen the likes of Derby County and Sheffield United before guiding Burton Albion to the Championship in 2016. He arrived at the Stags in 2020 and is into his fourth term in Nottinghamshire. 

THE KEY MEN 

Goalkeeper: Christy Pym 

The 28-year-old made the permanent switch from Peterborough United to Mansfield Town this summer following a successful time on loan with the club last season. 

Turning pro in 2012, the ‘keeper made 151 appearances for Exeter City before joining Peterborough United in 2019. He fell out of favour on London Road and spent time on loan at Stevenage before arriving at the Stags for an initial loan stint in 2022. 

Defender: Aden Flint 

Now into his 17th season in football, Flint has brought quite the footballing CV to the One Call Stadium after winning promotion to the Championship last season with Sheffield Wednesday. 

In 2012 he won the League Two title with Swindon Town and in 2015 the League One title with Bristol City, where he also won the EFL Trophy in the same season – and went to make over 200 appearances for the Robins. He has already played 15 times in the yellow and blue this season. 

In the middle: Louis Reed 

Perhaps a familiar name to Rovers fans, Reed graduated from Sheffield United’s academy in 2014 to go on 39 outings with the Blades and 42 with Chesterfield out on loan. 

He played 69 times for Peterborough before joining Swindon Town in 2021. He arrived at Mansfield in January and has made sure that his name is one of the first on the team sheet for Nigel Clough. 

Up top: Lucas Akins 

Akins joined the Stags last season to bring an eight year stay at Burton Albion to a close. 

Having spent time on the non-league circuit and up in Scotland, the striker made his mark on the EFL to score 107 times over a decade to the south of the border. 

HEAD-TO-HEAD 

Rovers first met Mansfield Town in the 1932/33 Division Three North campaign and played out a 2-2 draw at Belle Vue in the October of that season before returning the exact same result in the reverse fixture in the March. 

In total, the two sides have crossed paths 69 times and Rovers trail in the head-to-head rivalry with just the 20 wins in comparison to the Stags’ 31. 

The last time the two sides faced off in the EFL Trophy was in the competition’s inaugural campaign under the “new” format when Alfie Beestin and Riccardo Calder gave Rovers a 2-0 win at the One Call Stadium in August 2016. 

TURNED OUT FOR BOTH 

A cult hero in the EFL, Matty Blair became Darren Ferguson’s first signing of the 2016 summer when he joined Rovers from Mansfield. He only spent one season in Nottinghamshire and scored twice in 35 games but once in red and white, he made it his home. 

He won the League Two title in his first season with Rovers and scored memorable goals against Morecambe and Stevenage in that campaign.  

He also played a part in Grant McCann’s side that finished in the League One play-offs in 2019 and scored another memorable effort against Luton Town that season. 

He joined Cheltenham in 2020 after 162 appearances and retired in 2022. 

Contributor: Jefferson Hall-Nolan 


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