2009-10 Season Preview...
By The Lonely Stag
Thursday 06 Aug 2009 15:33:00
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Can the Stags head back into the football league at the second attempt? With the likes of Looton Town barging for a title spot, it certainly isn't going to be easy, but the expectations of the Field Mill faithfull have been lifted by the manner in which boss David Holdsworth goes about his business.

Ever the one for precise detail behind the scenes, Holdsworth has been busy rebuilding the squad ahead of the opening game with Crawley on 8th August.

But what of the serious challangers to the BSP league crown, all eyes are obviously on Looton to bounce straight back up, following the way they were relegated in the first place. No team could have overturned a 30 point deficit, and the fact that they still remained in contention for so long, will hold them in good sted for the race to get back into the football league.

The Stags will face a big crowd when the head to Kenilworth Road for the opening away of the season, as the hatters have flogged over 4000 season tickets, and signed a major sponsorship deal with Easyjet to provide vital financial clout for the season ahead.

Another much fancied team is for the umpteenth year, Oxford United, but this year is backed up by a superb run for the play offs last year, under the managership of Chris Wilder. They have also shifted a strong number of season tickets, so will be well backed on their home turf.

Cambridge, who narrowly missed out in the play off final last term, will be fancied again, but turmoil hit the club in the summer, when amazingly they sacked manager Gary Brabin. They replaced him with ex-Leyton Orient boss Martin Ling, but he will certainly have his work cut out to repeat last years near miss.

But who do we think will spring a surprise in the division, hopefully alongside a Mansfield Town march to the title, we are going for AFC Wimbledon, a truly remarkable story in their own right. After two succesive promotions, can they really make it a hat trick and seal the promised land again. No one who loves the game, would begrudge them what they quite easily deserve. With over 2,500 season ticket sales sold, their tight ground will be packed to the rafters for their home games, which always provides a massive advantage.

As for the rest, including opening opponents Crawley Town, well they'll be fighting for the scraps, and the hope of a play off place at least, we can't really honestly see past Luton, Oxford or dare we say the Stags for a title finish.

In our heart of hearts, we would take a play off place right now, if was offered out, but you just never know if we can kick off with a strong start, even with that Looton game the first away trip, then mometum is key in this league, just ask Burton Albion for the evidence.

It is once you are playing catch up with the rest of the pack, that you end up falling behind, and with everyone beating each other, play off places become all too distant very quickly.

So who will be the key man or men for the Stags, we are certainly behind Daryl Clare, and in fact would urge you to have a flutter on him to be the League's top scorer, once he get's off the mark, he is simply proven time and time again, that he can do it at this level.

Once again though, the main source of gaining points for the Stags, espeically away from home, will be the back line, superbly marshalled by Alan Marriot, who we tip to be player of the year at the end of the campaign.

He will be run close by defender Scott Garner, who impressed massively last term. If Marriot and Garner stay fit for the duration, then the Stags will have that top five position, because we won't be conceding many goals at all.

Good Luck to the Team then for the promotion charge up the BSP, we are right behind you boys, let's hope a wembley trip and promotion to the football league comes out of the other side, at the end of it all.

2009-10 Mansfield Town BSP Fixtures

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