Cambridge United and Mansfield Town share the spoils

PUBLISHED: 16:57 13 January 2018 | UPDATED: 10:37 15 January 2018

Jake Carroll had Cambridge United's best chance against Mansfield.

Jake Carroll had Cambridge United's best chance against Mansfield.

Iliffe Media Ltd

No quarter given or spared at the Abbey Stadium

Cambridge United and Mansfield Town cancelled each other out in a goalless draw in Sky Bet League Two.

It was a tough game with neither side giving an inch, and it proved to be a fair result with the U’s edging the first half and Mansfield probably just having the upper hand after the break.

There were two debutants in the U’s starting line-up, with loanee Adam Phillips in midfield and Billy Waters, who joined on loan from Northampton Town on Friday, up front alongside Uche Ikpeazu.

It was an end-to-end first half, with both sides proving hard to break down and as a result, neither keeper being forced into a save.

But that should not detract from the quality of play, with the U’s newcomers slotting seamlessly into the team.

United were getting the ball on the deck and trying to move Mansfield around, and a flowing move in the 37th minute presented them with the best chance of the half.

A great bombarding run by Jake Carroll down the left saw him pass to George Maris, and with a great one-two clipped a curling pass back into the path of the left-back, who then lashed his shot over.

Mansfield’s best opening of the half came in the 10th minute, with CJ Hamilton doing well to get to the by-line in the area and pulling back his pass for Alfie Potter, whose curling side-effort went just wide.

And it was probably just about fair that the scores remained deadlocked at half time.

It was almost the perfect start to the second half for United.

Great work on the left by Waters saw him get to the by-line and pull a pass back for Ikpeazu, who flicked it to get himself space for a shot, which Mansfield keeper Conrad Logan saved with his feet.

Mansfield were becoming more of an attacking threat, and CJ Hamilton’s cross from the left was met with a header by Lee Angol, but it was straight at David Forde.

Alex McDonald’s 25-yard curling free kick went just over the bar and then there was a scare when Danny Rose had the ball in the United net, but it was ruled out for offside.

Rose then volleyed narrowly over the bar after good work from Mal Benning’s cross.

There was disappointment for David Amoo as he only lasted 10 minutes as a second-half substitute before going off with an injury.

But there were big cheers from the U’s faithful in the 79th minute as Barry Corr appeared as a substitute, having re-signed on a short-term deal until the end of January on Friday.

However, there was to be no fairytale comeback as neither side were able to find a late breakthrough.

Cambridge United: Forde, Halliday, Taylor, Darling, Carroll, Deegan, Maris, Phillips, Waters, Brown, Ikpeazu.

Substitutes: Amoo (Phillips, 64), Dunk (Amoo, 74), Corr (Waters, 80). Not used: Mitov, O’Neil, Elito, Davies.

Mansfield Town: Logan, Anderson, Pearce, Bennett, Benning, Potter, Mellis, McDonald, Hamilton, Angol, Rose.

Substitutes: White (Potter, 64), Sterling-James (Anderson, 80), Atkinson (Mellis, 87). Not used: Olejnik, Digby, Spencer, Byrom.

Bookings: Mansfield Town – Angol (foul, 53), McDonald (foul, 53).

Referee: Trevor Kettle.

Attendance: 4,324 (away 499).

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