Mansfield Town made to hang on in nine-goal thriller at Sheffield

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MANSFIELD Town ended pre-season with another win in their friendly at Sheffield last night – but they let a 5-1 lead slip as the Evo-Stik League Division One home side fought back to 5-4 in a real thriller.

Gary Roberts, Stags’ top performer on the night, set up Andy Todd with a header for a third minute opener and then chipped the ball on for Jake Speight to fire home the second on the turn on 11 minutes.

When Ben Hutchinson’s strike was saved on the half-hour, Chris Clements’ poaching instinct made it 3-0, though seconds later Ash Worsfold headed one back for Sheffield.

But Roberts set Speight away for his second goal on 41 minutes, then good work by Speight saw Hutchinson open his account to make it 5-1 at the break.

Canadian striker Jared Stevens poked home a Chris Adam cross on the hour and, with 20 minutes to go, it was game on as home sub Ellis Wall backheeled a ball into the six yard box into the net.

With six minutes left James Knowles bagged Sheffield’s fourth from close range to set up a tense finish in which Mansfield held on.

STAGS: Redmond; Todd, Shaw, Dempster, Mills, J. Green (Rogers 77); Hand, Roberts, Clements; Speight (Somes 84), Hutchinson (trialist 58).