Crawley Town suffered a heavy defeat at the hands of Mansfield Town this afternoon. The Red Devils were dealt the first blow by Ollie Clarke inside the opening five minutes and survived until half-time, which left it all to play for in the second half. Unfortunately, an early collapse in the second period saw the Reds concede a further two goals by the 50th minute. A fourth was added 15 minutes later to round off Mansfield's tally before Mazeed netted a consolation for Crawley.
It was hardly an ideal start for Crawley, as the visiting side found themselves 1-0 down within the first five minutes. Kellan Gordon looked to have been fouled, but referee Sam Allison waved play on. Winger Stephen Quinn capitalised on the empty space and found Ollie Clarke in the box. Mansfield’s captain found the bottom corner with a precise shot to give Crawley an early deficit.
The early scares continued for Crawley as Mansfield continued to find space in behind the Reds’ backline. A couple of last-ditch tackles from Dion Conroy and Joel Lynch kept the home sides lead to only one goal. Ben Gladwin fired a shot over from range during Crawley’s first attacking move of the match a few moments later.
Dom Telford forced a save from Christy Pym at point-blank range in the 18th minute. A clever ball from Jack Powell fooled the Mansfield defence, which allowed Telford to swoop in and gain possession. Pym was already well off of his line and smothered the effort from the Crawley striker.
Crawley continued to look positive on the attack, but Mansfield also looked like a constant threat. Corey Addai made a very decent save to deny Rhys Oates at close range before making another smart stop to deny the same player as he raced through on goal.
The half-time whistle rounded off a pretty miserable half for the Red Devils. Scott Lindsey’s side were certainly not out of the game and had shown signs of attacking intent, but other than Telford’s chance, the Reds had failed to trouble Pym in the Mansfield goal.
Unfortunately, the half-time break didn’t seem to do much good for the Red Devils, as Scott Lindsey’s side found themselves 2-0 down in the 48th minute. Alfie Kilgour headed home from the penalty spot after the Mansfield man was left relatively unmarked in space.
Two soon became three for Mansfield. Davis Keillor-Dunn tapped home into an empty net after a mix-up between Addai and Lynch left the Crawley goalkeeper in no man’s land to allow Oates to slide the ball over to the midfielder, who tapped the into the gaping net.
Addai made a tremendous save to deny Lucas Akins from a similar range just two minutes later. Oates again slid the ball across the box, but the Crawley goalkeeper was equal to the effort on this occasion. Things were beginning to look bleak for Crawley with over half an hour still to play.
It was four soon enough as Davis Keillor-Dunn smashed home his second goal of the game. A block in the box saw the ball fall fortunately to the Mansfield man. The midfielder picked the ball up and curled an effort into the top corner to deal a further blow to the already bruised Reds.
Mazeed pulled a goal back for Crawley to restore some pride. A neat link-up with Nadesan allowed the left-back to pick out the bottom corner and score his first goal for the club.
The final whistle eventually sounded to end a miserable afternoon for Scott Lindsey’s side.
REDS XI: Addai, Gordon, Conroy (Johnson 72’), Lynch, Mazeed, Powell (Fellows 58’), Grant, Gladwin (Oteh 46’), Khaleel, Nadesan (Tilley 72’), Telford (Spong 72’)