The Reds will play the second of three consecutive home league fixtures tomorrow against Mansfield Town, who held us to a dramatic 3-3 draw last time out after Andy Cook equalised in the dying stages of the game.
Mansfield have had an underwhelming season so far, as many fans expected a play-off chase this year. The Stags currently sit in 16th under Nigel Clough, despite scoring 41 times this season, the same number as Salford City who are hovering around the play-offs.
In their most recent league game, the Stags defeated high-flying Cheltenham Town, 3-1, at the One Call Stadium after the table-toppers opened the scoring early in the second-half. Minutes later Jordan Bowery equalised before Mansfield went full throttle, scoring two more within the next ten minutes.
Jamie Reid and Jordan Bowery were the scorers of two quickfire efforts that saw the Stags pick up an important three points after suffering losses away at Barrow and Bradford in previous fixtures.
The Reds have built up some fantastic form in recent weeks, keeping two clean sheets in two consecutive 1-0 victories over in-form sides. We travelled to the best performing outfit this year in League Two in Tranmere Rovers last Saturday, winning in a dominant display where the likes of Jake Hesketh and Joe McNerney impressed. Tom Nichols scored a spectacular goal in the second-half after getting on the end of a George Francomb cross and flicking into the net whilst on the turn.
We then hosted Salford City in West Sussex on Tuesday night, on the back of a great away win with a confident group. The lads again impressed in all positions and achieved another 1-0 victory, with Tom Nichols finding the winner once more after a nifty run in behind.
Joe McNerney and Jordan Tunnicliffe again were the pair of centre-halves that let nothing past them in the air, making many crucial headers and clearances. Archie Davies made his second consecutive start in the side at right-back and again looked sharp both in defence and driving forward, displaying his pace and crossing ability.
Since 2015, the sides have met on ten occasions with Crawley winning twice - both times at The People’s Pension Stadium. The Reds’ last win in Mansfield came in 2010 when the sides were in the National League.
In our last battle with the Stags, we claimed a point after a dramatic 3-3 draw in an entertaining affair which saw Max Watters score twice after coming on after the half-time break. Tom Dallison was the scorer of the other goal as Crawley went two goals ahead but Mansfield showed spirit to fight back and score twice through George Lapslie and Andy Cook, to snatch two points away from Crawley, as Lee Bradbury took charge when John Yems missed out through personal reasons.
In our clash with the Stags last season, a Bez Lubala goal proved the difference in a 1-0 home win. In the previous season the Reds failed to score against Mansfield, losing 1-0 away and playing out a goalless affair at The People’s Pension Stadium.
Mansfield Town possess different attacking threats for tomorrow’s game. Jamie Reid and Jordan Bowery have formed a strong partnership in recent matches, scoring 15 goals between them this season. Reid, formerly of Torquay and a past team-mate at Exeter of Tom Nichols, earned a place in the league’s ‘team of the week’ following his goal against Cheltenham on Tuesday night.
Experienced strikers Andy Cook and Nicky Maynard were both loaned out to promotion hopefuls Bradford City and Newport County respectively, which means that young forward, Jason Law, has become a regular starter for the Stags in recent weeks, supporting both Lavery and Reid in attacking areas.
Reece Grego-Cox, Sam Matthews and Tom Dallison remain unavailable. Tony Craig has been working hard to make his return in the near future.
HOW THEY BET*
Crawley Town 6/4
Mansfield Town 13/8
*Odds correct with EFL partners Sky Bet at the time of writing. Please gamble responsibly.
You can watch the match live on iFollow from 2:50 with commentary from Gary Smith and Tony Vessey.
You can purchase a match pass for £10 by clicking here.