Guest double helps the Bulls to continue charge

Rudy Funk shared his festive delight after his AFC Mansfield defeated Hemsworth Miners' Welfare 5-1 to top the Northern Counties East League table at Christmas.

Sunday, 24th December 2017, 6:39 pm
Updated Sunday, 24th December 2017, 7:00 pm

The away win left Funk’s side eight points clear of nearest rivals Handsworth Parramore after 24 games.

The AFC Mansfield boss said: “First of all I’m freezing — but I’m really warm inside because the lads delivered a great Christmas present for everyone.

“Hemsworth are always an organised side so you could argue it’s a bit of a surprise that we came here and dominated.”

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A frantic start saw Philip Buxton give the Bulls an eighth-minute lead with an effort from outside the penalty area.

Nick Guest, returning to his old stomping ground, netted either side of what was ultimately a consolation goal for the hosts.

Latching on to Jason White’s long ball, Guest rounded the keeper and slotted into an empty net on 14 minutes before heading in from close-range nine minutes later.

Top-scorer Ollie Fearon turned in a corner on 69 minutes.

Man-of-the-match Matty Plummer completed the Bulls’ rout as he latched onto Connor Smythe’s through ball in added time to make it 5-1.