Mansfield 1-1 Lincoln: John Akinde’s penalty salvages a point for the Imps


Mansfield Town drew with Lincoln City as Krystian Pearce’s early header was cancelled out by well taken penalty scored by the Imps forward John Akinde.

Mansfield asserted their dominance early on as they won a series of corners, with the second set-piece being successful as the Stags left-back Mal Benning swung the ball in and Stags skipper Krystian Pearce connected with it to send it into the back of the net in the fourth minute sending the Mansfield crowd crazy.

Stags right-back Gethin Jones continued to be a threat down the right, winning a string of corners for the amber and blues.

Lincoln though, were not without attacks of their own, as they threatened to break on the counter.

Combination work between Akinde and Bruno Andrade almost led to an incisive opening had it not been for some smart defending at the last.

In the 14th minute Jorge Grant made a brilliant run into the box and was tackled unfairly by Imps defender Michael Bostwick who clipped the midfielders foot in the process of trying to regain possession and it looked like it was a clear penalty but, the referee Graham Scott made a controversial decision booking the on-loan midfielder for diving with a yellow card.

Moments later, Grant assumed responsibility of a free-kick he won but the subsequent effort was too close to Imps keeper Matt Gilks.

Mansfield were then handed a huge warning sign when Akinde wrestled for possession and allowed Mark O’Hara to unleash a strike that was only stopped by a teammate as it whistled goalwards.

Going into the break the score stayed at 1-0 to Mansfield Town.

The second half was a contentious one, least of all from some of the officiating decisions which left both sets of fans frustrated at best. Stags defender Matt Preston got elbowed in the head with the referee letting the play go, a few minutes later a late tackle from Imps defender Harry Toffolo on Stags winger CJ Hamilton. Both could have resulted in cards.

on the hour mark another silly mistake had Mansfield fans panicking. Stags keeper Conrad Logan looked to have dealt with a bouncing cross before spilling the ball, almost into the path of Harry Anderson, yet the Stags’ shot-stopper was able to claim at the second opportunity.

The Mansfield keeper was not so lucky when he was adjudged to have fouled Anderson inside his penalty area, referee Graham Scott showed little hesitation in awarding a spot-kick, which Akinde tucked away to restore parity on 75 minutes.

Mansfield looked nervous in the last 15 minutes as Lincoln launched attack after attack, none of those attacks created a real opportunity for the Imps to get the lead and the win but, made Mansfield fans increasingly scared that the local rivals may score another goal to take all three points back home.

Both sides continued to press for a winner as Walker found himself inches away from Alex MacDonald’s header but, it proved to be unattainable for the Stags and the Imps with both sides taking a point apiece.

This game meant that Mansfield would climb back up to third place ahead of MK Dons on goal difference where as for Lincoln they remained top of the table ten points clear of Mansfield who are in third and six points ahead of second place Bury.

Mansfield’s next fixture arrives this Saturday, again at One Call Stadium, as they welcome Crewe Alexandra. Lincoln’s next fixture is also on Saturday as they face Crawley Town away from home.



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