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Match Report: Mansfield Town 1-2 Southend United

1 November 2014

Goals from Ryan Leonard and David Worrall seal deserved win for Blues

Southend United produced a stunning performance in Nottinghamshire to defeat Mansfield Town in Sky Bet League Two.

Ryan Leonard's long range stunner and David Worrall's terrific half-volley sealed the points for Blues who had to withstand a late Stags barrage after Oliver Palmer's late consolation.

Blues boss Phil Brown put new signing Jakub Sokolik straight into the Southend lineup with the loanee partnering Luke Prosser at the heart of defence.

Fellow loanee Elliot Lee missed out after picking up an injury in training on Friday.

It was a quiet opening to the game, but after eight minutes, striker Barry Corr had a terrific chance to open the scoring. Myles Weston did well on the left-hand side and his cutback found Corr, who skewed wide of the target from eight yards out.

Four minutes later and Mansfield defender Lee Beevers produced a superb block to deny Weston, who wriggled free of his man. The forward's strike was heading for the bottom corner of the net and would have put Blues 1-0 up had it not been for the defender.

Moments later and Blues took the lead through Leonard in emphatic fashion. A well worked corner taken by Michael Timlin, was dummied by Gary Deegan and Leonard was on the edge of the box to powerfully side-foot home from the edge of the box, via the crossbar.

It was a really encouraging start from Brown's boys and a couple of minutes later, a terrific cross from Worrall found Corr lurking in the box but the Irishman's header flashed over Sascha Studer's crossbar.

The best chance Mansfield had in the opening 25 minutes came through their top scorer Rakish Bingham, whose free kick flew just past Dan Bentley's right-hand post.

Just after the half an hour mark, the luckless Corr was denied again. The big striker brought down Worrall's floared corner really well but his volley was somehow stopped by Studer before being hacked off the goal-line.

On the stroke of half time, Corr, once again, was superbly stopped by Studer. Corr got on the end of Worrall's knock down before firing goalwards, but Studer beat the attempt away and the danger was cleared.

After the break, Blues continued their superb attacking play, forcing a number of corner kicks, with a headed chance for Timlin – who headed wide of the target – the best attempt prior to the hour mark.

With just over 20 minutes of the game remaining, Mansfield loanee Vadaine Oliver headed over the bar before Blues added a second goal just moments later.

Following Corr's excellent knockdown, Worrall was waiting at the back post to lash home with 20 minutes left.

Mansfield through more men forward and a minute later, the impressive Bingham was halted by Bentley when through on goal.

Mansfield did pull one back 11 minutes from time through substitute Palmer. The ball was missed by Sokolik and after the defender couldn't regain his footing, Palmer slotted past Bentley.

With a couple of minutes remaining, Bentley did well to keep hold of a Palmer header as Blues secured a valuable three points on the road to get back to winning ways in Sky Bet League Two.

Blues: Bentley; White (c), Sokolik, Prosser, Williams; Worrall, Deegan, Leonard, Timlin, Corr, Weston (Coulthirst, 85)

Unused: P. Smith, Thompson, Atkinson, Hurst, Bolger, Payne

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