STAGS SHOW CHARACTER TO COME HOME WITH THE POINTS
Bristol Manor Farm 1 AFC Totton 2
The Stags faced a tricky visit to Bristol Manor Farm today knowing full well that they would need to show more mettle than they did in their 4-3 defeat at Slimbridge last week. Although the Stags played their part in an eventful game they knew they would have to tighten up at the back if they were to get anything at the Creek, the home of the Farmy Army.
Louis Langdown made two changes to his starting eleven for today’s clash. Callum Chugg came in for the suspended Connor York who was sent off at Slimbridge, Chugg stepped in at left back and Eddie Perrett switched to an unfamiliar right back role. There was also a place for new addition Adam McWilliam who has joined the Stags from Montrose in Scotland. McWilliam was installed at number 8 in place of Alex Haynes. Haynes had to settle for a place on the bench alongside Jason Brooks, Ollie Bradley and Adam Wilde.
The game itself was not the greatest of spectacles due to a very gusty wind that continued throughout the afternoon. However, if you like your football played with total commitment then you would have enjoyed the game.
Both sides were finding it extremely hard to pick out accurate balls, with many attempted passes going astray as the players tried to get to grips with the very difficult conditions.
Owen Howe had the first half chance of the game as he chased a ball over the top for BMF, but his shot lacked power and Murphy saved with ease. Jordan Rogers then tried his luck with a shot that was deflected wide for a corner. When the corner was taken it was headed over by Owen Howe.
Totton were awarded two free kicks within a couple of minutes of each other, and they were both around 25 yards out. The first free kick hit the wall from McWilliam and the 2nd was taken by Craig Feeney and he sent his shot over the bar.
With 20 minutes on the clock the Stags took the lead when FEENEY was quickest to a ball through from Jack Masterton and he lifted the ball over BMF keeper Ben John and it dropped nicely into the net for Feeneys 18th goal of the season.
Totton then had penalty appeals waved away by referee Stuart Kane when Feeney looked to have been hauled down by BMF right back Stuart Tovey.
Jordan Rogers then caused a few problems for the Stags on the left when he firstly put in a cross that was half cleared, the ball eventually ended up back at the feet of the Farm No 11 who on this occasion sent a dangerous cross right across the face of goal.
A few minutes later Rogers was again involved when he supplied a cross for Owen Howe who stooped to head over the Totton crossbar. On the next occasion Ashley Kingdon was the supplier of a cross for Howe, who once again headed over.
Totton then strung a few passes together before Jack Masterton fired over from 20 yards. Masterton again sent a shot over on 41 minutes after Eddie Perretts deep cross was diverted into his path.
Half Time: Bristol Manor Farm 0 AFC Totton 1
The first meaningful incident of the 2nd period saw a defensive mis-kick, thanks to the wind by the Stags Dave Allen, and this almost let in Rogers who swiped at his opportunity and the ball went harmlessly wide.
BMF were awarded a free kick on 53 minutes and it was fired over by Chas Hemmings. A short while later Hemmings sent another shot over the Totton bar.
Tottons 1st chance of the half came Justin Bennett laid a ball off to Stuart Green inside the box, but Greens effort went a couple of feet over the bar.
The Stags were then handed the chance to double their lead when a moment of madness from keeper BMF keeper John’s saw Totton given a penalty. Johns looked to have already fouled Bennett as an incoming ball arrived in the box. The Farm keeper then appeared to lay into the Totton striker and chuck him to the ground. The referee must have only seen the tail end of the incident, because he did not send John off. After a delay of a couple of minutes BENNETT stepped up and coolly tucked the spot kick away.
The home side then made a triple substitution in a bid to hall themselves back into the game, but their chances of getting back into the game were severely hampered when Aron Robbins clashed with Adam McWilliam In between the two dugouts and Robbins was shown a red card for going straight through McWilliam.
If Totton thought it would be plain sailing from here on in, they were mistaken because on 72 minutes the home side reduced the arrears when Jamie Adams worked himself some space before he crossed low into the centre of the box for Owen Howe, who turned and shot inside the right-hand post.
Chances followed for the home side with Hemmings shooting over and substitute Jamie Bird sending in a free kick that Shane Murphy did really well to push wide. The last chance of the game fell to the home side on 90 minutes when Lewis Bamford crossed for Adams and Murphy saved for the Stags.
Unlike last week the Stags back line stood firm to enable their side to come home with three very good points.
Full Time: Bristol Manor Farm 1 AFC Totton 2