Mansfield 4 Crawley 0: Ten-man Reds suffer second half mauling
Crawley Town suffered their first away defeat when were humbled 4-0 by Mansfield.
A 44th minute goal by Nathan Thomas was added to three minutes later at the start of the second half by Mitchell Rose.
It could have got much worse as Reds then went down to ten men with the sending-off of Gwion Edwards for a challenge.
Mansfield responded confidently by surging forward and adding two more goals in two minutes by Matt Green and Craig Westcarr.
Reds made one change with Liam Donnelly back from a one-match suspension replacing Joe McNerney who has a knee injury.
Mansfield also made one change as manager Adam Murrey fielded a 4-4-2 formation for the first time this season, with Matt Green and Craig Westcarr up front.
Nathan Thomas came into left midfield in place of Reggie Lambe who was on the bench.
Mansfield were first out of the blocks when West Carr had a shot from a narrow angle in the first minute qwhich was smothered by the legs of the advancing keeper Freddie Woodman.
A Mansfield corner kick was headed by Ryan Tafazolli to Matt Green who shot on the turn but the ball was comfortably saved by Woodman.
The home side continued to look dangerous and came close to taking the lead when Adam Chapman fired from 25 yards narrowly wide of the left post.
Liam Donnelly got forward for Crawley and had a header on target which was easily saved by former Crawley keeper Brian Jensen.
Matt Harrold had to go off on 24 minutes having pulled his hamstring and was replaced by Lee Barnard.
Barnard was soon in the thick of the action as he had a shot from ten yards which Jensen saved.
Mansfield took the lead moments before half-time when Nathan Thomas cut out a pass from Barnard to Jimmy Smith and advanced towards goal before firing an unstoppable shot into the net from ten yards.
With confidence high, the Stags threatened to go 2-0 up when Tafazolli’s header nearly found the outstretched foot of Matt Green in a dangerous position but he failed to make contact and the ball ran out of play.
Mansfield soon added a second goal one minute after the start of the second half when a corner was only half-cleared and Mitchell Rose drove low from the edge of the area, taking a slight deflection on its way to beating Woodman.
Fortunes soon went from bad to worse as just three minutes later Gwion Edwards was shown a straight red card for a challenge on Nicky Hunt, leaving Crawley to play most of the second half with only ten men.
Matt Green then thudded a shot against the base of the post as Mansfield looked to kill the game off.
He didn’t have to wait long a Green made it 3-0 on 71 minutes when he tapped-in a cross from Craig Westcarr from the six-yard box.
Green then returned the favour for Westcarr one minute later when he supplied him with an inviting ball in space in the box for a side-footed fourth goal.
Mansfield went close to adding a late fifth when Thomas supplied Green for a header over the bar.
Woodman then made a fine double save to prevent a massacre to deny Lambe and Nathan Thomas as the Stags ended in rampant mood.
REDS: Woodman, Scales, Walton, Bradley, Edwards, Smith, Young (Rooney 55), Ashton, Harrold (Barnard 24), Deacon, Donnelly (Bawling 73).
Unused subs: Henderson, Preston
STAGS: Jensen, Benning, Rose (Lambe 68), Pearce, Chapman, Clements, Green, Westcarr, Thomas, Tafazolli, Hunt (Collins 80)
SUBS: Marsden, Beardsley, Yassuf, J Thomas, McGuire
REFEREE: Andrew Madley
ATTENDANCE: 2,524 (110 away)
Crawley Man of the Match: Sonny Bradley
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