IN-FORM Mansfield Town made it six games unbeaten with this first away win in three months at Macclesfield Town’s Moss Rose tonight (Tuesday).
Stags were in control from start to finish and won the points with a 39th minute goal from recalled Matt Green, his second in as many games, a brilliantly-worked goal by Lindon Meikle on 66 minutes, and a late header by Luke Jones.
The visitors made a confident start with Green having a shot blocked and Murray way too high with an early effort.
On nine minutes Murray won a robust tackle on the left before hoisting a high ball forward for Green to attack Jackson and eventually fire a left-footed finish over.
But Redmond had to get down quickly to grab a powerful low Henry ball from the right at the feet of Holroyd.
The Silkmen then broke quickly from Stags’ first corner and Thompson did well to save the day with a crucial double clearance with the home side having men over.
Clements was only just the home angle with a curling shot after making a fine interception as Mansfield continued to press.
On 29 minutes Green’s pace took him into a great central position to unleash a blast that Cronin had to beat away for a corner.
Cronin needed a second attempt to grab a low Hutchinson shot that skidded towards him as Mansfield enjoyed all the possession.
Clements also tested Cronin from 25 yards before Murtagh was booked on 33 minutes for leaving a foot in while tackling as the home side’s frustration grew.
Wedgbury fired in a snapshot from 30 yards which forced Redmond into a save.
Briscoe was looking back to his bullish best and saw a low free kick deflect inches wide for a corner on 39 minutes.
From that Stags grabbed a deserved lead as Clements floated it into the centre of the six yard box where Green’s head got there before Cronin.
Macclesfield almost had an instant reply as Braham-Barratt did well to keep the ball in play on the left and pull it back for Henry, whose shot was mis-hit and almost deceived Redmond but he was able to make the save.
He was also behind Jackson’s low effort in stoppage time to ensure Stags went into half-time ahead as the Silkmen ended the half on the front foot.
Green should have made it 2-0 five minutes after the restart.
An offside flag was raised as Green went clean through, but the referee was aware Green was chasing a poor back pass from Jackson and play went on, Green missing the target with his finish.
Beevers was booked for clearing the ball after the whistle had gone on 53 minutes and will now miss Saturday’s Trophy tie.
Wedgbury dragged a shot just wide from distance after winning the ball from Murray, who had just had his final warning for persistent fouling.
Stags began to regain their first half momentum and Meikle made Cronin save high to his left with a curling effort from 25 yards, Clements then just over from the same distance, before Meikle saw a shot deflect and loop over.
Holroyd might have equalised seconds later when picked out with a great cross by sub Mackreth only to send his free header straight at a relieved Redmond.
Instead Stags carved out their best goal of the season on 66 minutes.
Green drove to the right by-line before placing a perfect square pass to the supporting Briscoe, who skipped between two defenders to put the ball on Meikle’s boot almost right on the line to apply the finishing touch.
Redmond failed to hold onto Mackreth’s next cross, but thankfully Thompson was there to hack clear.
Murtagh was narrowly wide with a vicious low drive soon after as the desperate Silkmen replaced hot shot Barnes-Homer with Morgan-Smith for the last 18 minutes.
Redmond was added to the book for time wasting on 75 minutes.
Mackreth fired into the near sidenetting and then Kissock screwed another effort wide as we entered the last 10 minutes.
Hutchinson was booked for his foul on Wedgbury on 82 minutes and immediately replaced by Stevenson.
Three home corners followed, Redmond saving Kissock’s prod from the second.
With the Silkmen pushing forward, Mansfield were able to exploit the space and Speight forced a good save from Cronin, full-length to his left, before Jones set the seal on a superb night with a powerful header from Clements’ corner two minutes from time which Cronin got his hands to but couldn’t keep out.
Clements and Mackreth both forced saves in stoppage time as Stags held onto a clean sheet.
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Weather for Mansfield
Saturday 25 May 2013
Temperature: 5 C to 16 C
Wind Speed: 9 mph
Wind direction: North
Temperature: 7 C to 18 C
Wind Speed: 8 mph
Wind direction: West