AFC Mansfield hammer Phoenix 5-0

On paper this game, which pitted first against third looked like it could be a tough battle.

But ‘The Bulls’ completely dominated the visitors and ran out comfortable 5-0 winners with a brace each for Dean Rick and James McCann and a trademark free-kick from Danny Tighe.

The home side were on it from the word go forcing Phoenix back into their own half with a quick passing game that left the visitors chasing shadows.

The inevitable breakthrough came after seven minutes.

Danny Tighe played the ball down the line to James McCann who sent a throughball to Dean Rick.

The striker evaded his marker and went round the keeper before firing home from a tight angle.

McCann was instrumental in the second goal, racing into the box he was upended by Aarron Cross for a penalty.

Rick stepped up and drove the ball past Matt Herschell-Smith to double the lead.

McCann went close on 24 minutes, his header rattling the bar from a Joe Naylor cross. On the half hour mark he had his reward, lashing the ball home from the a tight angle after a through ball from Naylor.

Danny Tighe made it 4-0 on 55 minutes after McCann had been fouled on the edge of the box. Tighe’s free kick curled around the wall and nestled in the far corner of the net.

The scoring was completed on 68 minutes when a well worked move involving Mark Carter and Danny McLane saw the latter deliver a curling cross which McCann headed home in the 6 yard box.

‘The Bulls’ continued to push forward but couldn’t add any further goals.

Brad Wilson, Captain of the newly formed U19 side came on for the final 10 minutes to make his 1st team debut and never put a foot wrong.

AFC Mansfield now turn their attention to The FA Carlsberg Vase on Saturday when they travel to The Bradley Football Development Centre to take on Grimsby Borough in the 2nd Qualifying Round.

AFC Mansfield: Sheppard, Tighe (Capuano 72), McLane, Draper, Timons (c), Naylor J (Ward 71), Buxton, Rick, White R (Wilson 80), Carter.

Subs not used: Staniforth & White A.

Phoenix: Herschell-Smith, O’Brien, Garlick C, Cross (Spence 75), Plant, Vinter (Davis 75), Gallacher, Lund, McConnell, Lawton, Hadfield. Subs not used: Garlick A, Green & Cuckson.

Man of the Match: James McCann.

Referee: Tim Walker.

Assistants: Martin Beard & John Stevens.

Attendance: 52.