Mansfield Town face FA Cup replay after draw with Charlton Athletic

Mansfield Town vs. Charlton Athletic        'CJ Hamilton celebrates his first half goal.
Mansfield Town vs. Charlton Athletic 'CJ Hamilton celebrates his first half goal.

Mansfield Town face an FA Cup replay at the Valley after an exciting 1-1 home draw with League One Charlton Athletic at the One Call Stadium today.

A superb CJ Hamilton goal put Stags in front right at the end of a thrilling first half, but the visitors upped a gear after the break and levelled through Toby Stevenson on 74 minutes.

It could have been worse as home keeper Bobby Olejnik had to keep out Nicky Ajose in a one-on-one break soon after.

However, it was a 12th game unbeaten for the Stags and they won’t fear the replay, having matched their opponents all afternoon with some magnificent defending from the back three.

The Mansfield side showed two changes with Timi Elsnik out with a slight knock and Danny Rose dropped to the bench.

In came Hayden White and Craig Davies.

Davies, Tyler Walker and Hamilton formed a three-man attacking spearhead in a 3-4-3 formation.

As expected, the visitors made nine changes, though among those coming in were players of the quality of Jamie Ward and Ajose.

With their current injury list, the visitors also named just five substitutes on the bench.

In a lively opening five minutes Stags had a corner cleared and then Sweeney got in a vital block in front of goal on Lapslie.

Then on seven minutes a rare burst from the back by skipper Pearce saw him loft a ball into Hamilton’s path, his finish clipping the outside of the near post.

The Addicks roared back upfield and Lapslie sent a rising shot over from 20 yards.

Benning sent a header straight at Phillips from a Bishop cross, then Mellis was too high with his shot as Stags asked early questions of their League One visitors.

The action was fast and furious and Ward was too high from distance for Charlton in their next raid with Pratley heading their first corner wide on 12 minutes.

Charlton should have gone ahead on 14 minutes. Great footwork by Grant saw him make progress down the left. His low cross picked out Lapslie just six yards from goal, but he sidefooted a poor finish wide

A second Stags corner was then cleared to Bishop, whose low shot was saved almost on the line by Phillips.

Charlton broke, but Stags survived as Grant fired low and wide.

Mansfield’s fourth corner on 25 minutes saw a Pearce header cleared off the line by Pratley.

Still Stags came forward and a low shot from Hamilton deflected into the near side-netting for a corner, from which Benning curled a low ball through everyone when it came out to him.

Maloney saw the game’s first yellow card on 34 minutes for a late challenge on Bishop.

Lapslie joined him on 38 minutes for a clattering challenge on Mellis.

A quickly taken free kick released Hamilton down the left, but his pass inside was fired over first time by Walker as half-time loomed.

But Mansfield were ahead with a great break and finish from Hamilton right on 45 minutes.

Benning’s pass sent Hamilton skipping away from his own half into acres of space on the left and he came inside into the box and let fly with a low shot that found the net off the inside of the far post.

Stags began the second half well and a huge throw by Olejnik sent Hamilton racing away again, his low shot touched just wide by the keeper.

Rose came on for Davies on 61 minutes in the home side’s first change of the day.

Pratley was handed Charlton’s third booking on 63 minutes for hacking down Walker.

But the visitors began to dominate possession and hauled themselves level on 73 minutes. Mansfield twice struggled to clear their lines and Stevenson was able to poke home a loose ball almost on the goal line after the ball was crossed in low from the right.

The visitors were almost ahead a minute later as Ajose raced clear, Olejnik getting in the way of his finish.

Sub Clarke was booked for hauling Hamilton down in full flight with three minutes to go as the game petered out into a replay.

MANSFIELD: Olejnik; Sweeney, Pearce, Preston; White, Mellis, Bishop, Benning (Butcher 77); Walker (Graham 90+3), Davies (Rose 61), Hamilton. Subs not used: Logan, Atkinson, Gibbens, Smith.

CHARLTON: Phillips, Dijksteel, Marshall, Pratley, Ward (Fosu 56), Grant, Sarr, Ajose (Hackett-Fairchild 76), Lapslie, Maloney (Clarke 69), Stevenson. Subs not used: Steer, Fosu, Morgan.

REFEREE: Ollie Yates of Staffordshire.

ATTENDANCE: 3,240 (492 away).