REPORT: Mansfield Town 2-1 Rotherham United

David Flitcroft has plenty to be cheerful about heading into the new season.
David Flitcroft has plenty to be cheerful about heading into the new season.

Mansfield Town completed an impressive pre-season campaign with another win against Championship opposition on Saturday as Rotherham United were beaten at the One Call Stadium.

With the Stags also having beaten Derby and Sheffield Wednesday and drawn with Sheffield United, they will go into the new campaign full of confidence, although Newport County will provide a very different kind of test when they visit for the opening fixture next Saturday.

But momentum can mean so much and with some encouraging displays and results behind them, Stags boss David Flitcroft will have plenty to be cheerful about from his side's summer.

After a quiet opening it was Stags who took the lead on nine minutes. Mal Benning tried to collect a cross from CJ Hamilton but was clattered by Anthony Forde in the process and the referee pointed to the spot. Craig Davies duly rolled the penalty home to open the scoring.

However, the lead lasted just three minutes as from a left-wing corner delivered by Forde, Sean Raggett was unmarked 12 yards out and he headed powerfully home to level the scores.

Kyle Vassell then headed over the top from Billy Jones' deep cross, before Will Vaulks' low 20-yarder was striagt at Logan in the Stags goal on 28 minutes, things having gone decidedly quiet in the intervening spell.

Mansfield nearly went back in front on 32 minutes when Davies nodded the ball back to the incoming Benning who volleyed on his weaker right foot but the ball flew just over the crossbar.

Forde then curled an effort over the bar four minutes later having cut in on his left foot, before Stags lost skipper Krystian Pearce soon afterwards after he went down apparently unchallenged and couldn't continue.

But Stags were unfazed and soon went back in front, as good interplay in the penalty area saw Hayden White control and feed Tyler Walker who took the ball on and finished well with his left foot on 41 minutes.

The first chance of the second-half came Rotherham's way as Vassell volleyed over following a Forde cross, Forde then forcing Logan to punch away an in-swinging free-kick a few minutes later.

Logan then saved low down from Ben Purrington's header on the hour mark, the Stags keeper doing similar to deny Ryan Williams with 12 minutes to go after another lull in goalmouth action, punctured by several substitutions.

Jamie Proctor chipped just wide after turning his man on 83 minutes as the Millers continued to threaten an equaliser, Michael Ihiekwe then unable to direct a header goalwards following a corner with three minutes to go.

And that would be their last chance they'd get, as the Stags held on to secure another morale-boosting victory ahead of the new season.

Mansfield: Logan, White, Benning, Preston, Pearce (c) (Gibbens 38), Bishop (Sterling-James 62), MacDonald, Davies (Graham 78), Butcher (Mellis 46), Walker (Angol 62), Hamilton.

Subs not used: Olejnik, Digby, Graham, Atkinson

Rotherham: Rodak (Price 62), Vaulks (Vyner 46), Forde (Taylor 62), Palmer (Mattock 62), Robertson (Ball 62), Purrington (Wood 62), Vassell (Proctor 70), Newell (Wiles 62), Smith (Mattock 62), Raggett (Ajayi 46), Jones (Ihiekwe 70)

Ref: Darren England

Att: 2,083 (466 away)