RTG’s totally and utterly (we hope) indispensable guide to this season’s away grounds.
THE OPPO – Mansfield Town, aka “The Stags”
DATE – Wednesday 13th August
KO TIME – 7.45pm
THE GROUND – Field Mill Ground, Quarry Lane, Mansfield NG18 5DA, click here for a map, the arrow in the middle points to where the ground is.
Field Mill is close to Mansfield town centre, just off the A60 Nottingham Road and very close to the local railway station.
GOING BY CAR?
The M1 runs relatively close to Mansfield, so it’s one of the easiest and hopefully fastest routes to go for from the north-east (A1 all the way to the M1, or A1, M18, M1 – whichever route takes your fancy) . Leave at jcn 28 and take the A38 signposted Mansfield, for 4 miles (you’ll pass through Sutton-in-Ashfield on the way). At the King’s Mill roundabout go straight ahead, then turn right at the next major crossroads, then second left (the left turn after you’ve crossed the railway line) into Quarry Lane and the ground is about a mile ahead on the left. On-street parking is, apparently, not too much of a problem.
GOING BY TRAIN?
Mansfield is a stop on the ‘Robin Hood Line’ which links Nottingham with Worksop, so you’ll need to travel to one of those two stations first, then change for Mansfield (you can get a direct train to Nottingham from London St Pancras, Birmingham, Sheffield, Manchester and Liverpool). A word of warning though – there are limited connections from Mansfield after an evening kickoff, check the details before you set off. Go to the National Rail website to see what trains are available for that day. And make sure you don’t end up on a train to Mansfield Woodhouse….close, but no cigar – but a two mile hike to get on with.
Mansfield station is very close to the Field Mill ground – you can see the ground itself when you leave the station. Follow the signs to Stockwell Gate and the bus station, down the steps, left along the dual carriageway and straight on at the first set of lights, along Portland Street – turn right at the next lights into Quarry Lane.
SCRAN AND BOOZE
The Early Doors is the closest pub to the ground, at the junction of Quarry Lane and Nottingham Road. 5-10 minutes’ walk away on Nottingham Road are The Plough (good selection of beers and good food) and The Famous Talbot (both with a good selection of beers and good food). The Lord Byron is at the opposite end of Quarry Lane to the ground and if you approach from the M1 jcn 28, this is the last pub you pass before you get to the ground.
For fast food there’s a KFC between Safeway and Curry’s on Nottingham Road, and close to that – on Park Lane Road – there’s the obligatory McDonalds. There’s a chippy and a Chinese just down from The Famous Talbot pub – oh, and more pubs in the Market Square in Mansfield town itself.
Or if you stop at Tibshelf services on the M1 (between jcns 28 and 29) it’s relatively new, very clean and well-organised, and has several options for nosh – Wimpy, a KFC-lookalike thing, Costa Coffee and the usual standard motorway services café and ‘sells-everything’ shop with sarnies, pasties, crisps, sweets, pop etc.
LEND US A FIVER I’M OUT OF CASH
The Safeway on Nottingham Road has Abbey National and Royal Bank of Scotland cash machines, and there’s also one in the ‘One Stop’ shop on Moor Lane, or stop at the aforementioned Tibshelf Services before you leave the M1 and there are cash machines in with the shops/eateries.
IN THE NEWS
They’ve just signed central defender Tony Vaughan from Motherwell.
They recently beat Premiership side Man City 2-1 in a pre-season friendly
They’ve decided not to field a team in the coming season’s reserve league, opting for a string of friendly matches instead.
Final league position – 23rd of 24 – relegated to Div III
P 46 W12 D8 L26 F66 A97 Pts 44
HEAD TO HEAD
Mansfield and Sunderland have only met 4 times previously, all in league matches; and we’ve won them all.
26/04/88: Mansfield 0, Lads 4 (old Div III)
31/08/87: Lads 4, Mansfield 1 (old Div III)
18/03/78: Lads 1, Mansfield 0 (old Div II)
22/10/77: Mansfield 1, Lads 2 (old Div II)
– Best league win: 9-2 vs Rotherham back in December 1932.
– Worst league defeat: 1-8 vs Walsall in January 1933.
– Record transfer fee paid: £150,000 to Carlisle for Lee Peacock (October 97)
– Record transfer fee received: £655,000 from Spurs, for Colin Calderwood (July 93)
– They started life as a cricket team; in 1840 the Greenhalgh family founded a cricket club in Mansfield (they ran a cotton mill and named the ground after it – hence ‘Field Mill’) and some years later branched out, founding Greenhalgh FC which eventually became Mansfield Town FC.
– Field Mill is one of the oldest football grounds in the world, footy has been played there since 1861
– In the 74/75 season, they scored over 100 goals during the season (all competitions)
Credits: Mansfield Town official website, Stagsonline.com, Rough Guide to English Football, Soccerbase, www.streetmap.co.uk, National Rail.