Mangos’ away form raises play-off hopes

AFTER spending much of the season in mid-table obscurity, Mangotsfield United’s recent away form has hoisted them up towards the play-offs for the first time.

Although matches are beginning to run out in a season that finishes in March, and some teams around them games in hand, the Mangos’ improved form offered hope that the club can have a real go at a grandstand finish to the season.       

A 3-0 away defeat to Westfields in mid-January seemed to sum up the team’s mid-table form but was followed by six wins on the bounce, including three successive away league wins.

The first was a 4-3 home win over Lydney Town at Cossham Street, perhaps the most thrilling match of the entire season so far, even more so because the Mangos were 3-1 down at one stage, and 3-2 down by half time. 

A superb fight-back in the second half saw the Mangos not only draw level, but also clinch the win.

Jaydn Crosbie and Will Ashton scored in the first-half, with Crosbie scoring again just after the break and Kyrese Hasani Morrison hitting the winner on 72 minutes.

But the game was watched by just 41 paying spectators, perhaps the lowest crowd at a Mangotsfield league match for many years.

Poor weather on the night, plus Bristol City v West Ham being shown live on national TV, certainly had a lot to do with that.

A mass of successive away games began well with a 3-1 Marsh Challenge Cup win at Roman Glass St George, who had become a bit of a bogey side in recent seasons. 

The Mangos played well & led 2-0 at the break, thanks to Kyrese Hasani Morrison (13) and Lewis Hutchinson (41).

Laurent Wilson got one back for the hosts on 48 minutes but was later red-carded, and Jack Nunn wrapped up the win with 5 minutes to go.

Next up was Pershore Town, and the Mangos came back with a resounding 3-0 win.

Luke Bence (13), Jaydn Crosbie (32) & Jack Nunn (35) got the goals in the first half and the team stood firm after the break to clinch the win, despite a lot of niggly play and a number of yellow cards being dished out.    

Three days later, the winning run continued with a 1-0 victory away at Longlevens in Gloucester, the only goal coming from Jaydn Crosbie after 16 minutes.

That was followed by yet another away win up in Gloucestershire, this time by 2-0 at Brimscombe & Thrupp, in another niggly game that saw seven bookings.

It was goals that mattered, though, and they came from Henry Ikeije on 64 minutes and Jaydn Crosbie, on 88 minutes.  

Heavy rain and a waterlogged pitch then caused the postponement of the next away game at Cinderford Town, but after such a hectic spell of matches recently, hopefully the night off won’t have done the team any harm in the long run.

Dave Smale  

February 27: Brimscombe & Thrupp  (Home – Marsh Challenge Cup)  
March 2: Slimbridge (Away)
March 9: Wantage Town (H)
March 12: Highworth Town (H)
March 16: Roman Glass St George (H)
March 19: Worcester City (A)
TBA: Cinderford Town (A)