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Match Reports

Report: Mansfield Town 1 Rovers 3

Rovers secure victory against the League Two side to maintain their winning start to pre-season

17 July 2019

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Rovers producing a solid display to earn a comfortable win at Mansfield Town and make it two wins from their opening two pre-season outings.

After victory at Barrow in the opening pre-season game a couple of weeks ago, Tony Mowbray's side continued their 100% start to their league preparations with a 3-1 win.

An own goal early on but Rovers in command at Field Mill, before the lead was doubled by young gun John Buckley just after the break.

Home captain Krystian Pearce halved the scoreline just a minute after Buckley's strike, but substitute Adam Armstrong made the game safe with five minutes remaining as he finished off a fine flowing move.

Rovers grabbed the advantage after only nine minutes of play in the encounter, as Dan Butterworth's low cross was put into his own net by Matt Preston from close range, with Tyler Magloire lurking and ready to pounce.

The provider for the opener almost turned scorer for a quick-fire second goal a moment later, but a fine solo run and strike from Butterworth was saved well by the feet of Stags stopper Conrad Logan.

Ben Brereton was having a lively start to the clash and he tested Logan midway through the half, with the Irishman's legs again denying a Rovers goal after the young frontman's left-footed effort.

The second goal continued to evade Rovers, with Logan proving to be a thorn in the side even more when, after fine link-up play from Joe Rankin-Costello and Lewis Travis, the giant 'keeper once again put his legs to good use to stop Buckley from doubling the visitors' tally.

The hosts struggled to create too many chances themselves, with the closest John Dempster's side coming to equalising through new signing Andy Cook, who headed a Jacob Mellis corner comfortably wide of Andy Fisher's left-hand post.

Six minutes into the second half and Rovers did get a goal that their dominance deserved. Great persistance from the impressive Buckley saw the youngster closedown home skipper Pearce before slotting past Logan, who could do nothing with his close range shot.

Pearce made amends for his error almost instantly; rifling home after a corner wasn't dealt with correctly by firstly Brereton and then Andy Fisher.

The goal appeared to give John Dempster's side a confidence boost, with Fisher being in the right place at the right time to turn behind Otis Khan's low free kick that was destined for the bottom corner.

Fisher was called into action again soon after, this time getting a glove on a poweful effort from substitute Danny Rose, after the striker let fly from the edge of the box.

A couple of changes after the hour mark saw the travelling Rovers fans get their first glimpse of Stewart Downing, with Armstrong joining the former England winger - Richie Smallwood and Joe Rothwell being the two who were replaced.

With 15 minutes remaining The Stags came close to equalising, with another pinpoint Khan free kick cracking Fisher's right-hand post before bouncing away.

Pearce was a nuisance in the box and the defender again brought a decent save from Fisher, who managed to tip away the defender's header towards goal from another teasing Khan free kick with under 10 minutes remaining.

But Rovers put the game out of reach for the hosts soon after, with Travis playing an inch perfect pass through to Armstrong who took a touch before calmly finding the bottom corner in the last attack of a good workout for Mowbray's charges.

Rovers are next in action on Sunday 21st July as we take on Scottish side Rangers at Ibrox, kick-off 3pm.

Mansfield Town: Logan, Preston, Pearce (c), Sweeney, A. Trialist, MacDonald, Mellis, Bishop, Hamilton, Maynard, Cook.

Substitutes: Stone, White, Benning, Khan, Tomlinson, Sterling-James, Gibbens, Smith, Rose, Clark, B. Trialist, C. Trialist.

Goal: Pearce, 53

Rovers: Fisher, Rankin-Costello, Magloire, Grayson, Hart, Smallwood (c) (Downing, 64), Travis, Butterworth, Rothwell (Armstrong, 64), Buckley, Brereton.

Unused substitutes: Leutwiler, Lenihan, Mulgrew, Johnson, Dack.

Goals: Preston OG, 9, Buckley, 52, Armstrong, 85.

Booked: Travis, 45, Smallwood, 57.

Referee: John Brooks.

Attendance: 1,701 (247 away)

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