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[monks data]
May 18, 2022 at 7.45pm UK at Sixfields Stadium
Northampton
0 - 1
Mansfield

Pinnock (87'), Horsfall (90+2')
FT(HT: 0-1)
McLaughlin (32')
O'Toole (53'), Wallace (63')

Preview: Northampton Town vs. Mansfield Town - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Wednesday's League Two clash between Northampton Town and Mansfield Town, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Mansfield Town make the trip to Northampton Town for the second leg of their League Two playoff semi-final holding a 2-1 advantage from the opening fixture.

Whoever prevails from the contest at Sixfields on Wednesday evening will set up a Wembley showdown with either Port Vale or Swindon Town.


Match preview

Mansfield Town manager Nigel Clough pictured on December 2, 2020© Reuters

Despite having ended the regular campaign with a six-game unbeaten streak, Northampton went into the opening fixture of this semi-final full of disappointment after narrowly missing out on automatic promotion.

Jon Brady had a big job on his hands to keep his squad's spirits up, and it appeared that he had failed with that task when Northampton went 2-0 down at Field Mill within 32 minutes.

However, Ali Koiki's effort after the break has left this tie delicately poised with both managers having reasons to believe that their team are favourites to reach the final.

If anything, Northampton were unfortunate not to get back on level terms before the end of the contest on Saturday, the Cobblers having built a certain level of momentum ahead of the second instalment.

Although they only put together the seventh-best home return during the regular campaign, Northampton still collected 44 points from 23 fixtures, losing just five times.

Mansfield's efforts on the road were far inferior, Nigel Clough's men winning just seven of their games and ending the campaign on a run of just five points from as many outings.

On a positive note, the Stags are on a five-match unbeaten streak, while they have scored twice in each of those contests with the goals being shared around the squad.

Leading marksman Rhys Oates ended a six-game wait for another strike on Saturday, the 27-year-old getting on the scoresheet for the first time since the end of March.

The corresponding fixture during the regular campaign took place all the way back in October, Northampton prevailing by a 2-0 scoreline on that occasion.

Northampton Town League Two form:
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • L

Mansfield Town League Two form:
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • D
  • D
  • W


Team News

Northampton will be able to call upon first-choice goalkeeper Liam Roberts, who served a one-match suspension for the first leg.

Brady will also consider handing a recall to Josh Felix-Eppiah, who could replace Idris Kanu if he is passed fit to start after his substitute outing on Saturday.

Aaron McGowan may come back into contention at right-back after not featuring since April 30.

While Clough could be prepared to stick with the same Mansfield XI from the first leg, he has revealed that a number of players are fitness doubts.

Newcastle United loanee Matty Longstaff felt "under par" during his hour-long appearance at the weekend, Stephen Quinn is carrying a hip issue, with George Maris and Stephen McLaughlin carrying knocks.

Northampton Town possible starting lineup:
Roberts; Mills, Horsfall, Guthrie, Koiki; Sowerby, McWilliams; Felix-Eppiah, Pinnock, Hoskins; Appere

Mansfield Town possible starting lineup:
Bishop; Perch, O'Toole, Hawkins, McLaughlin; Longstaff, Maris, Quinn; Murphy; Bowery, Oates


SM words green background

We say: Northampton Town 1-1 Mansfield Town (Mansfield to win 3-2 on aggregate)

Having kept themselves in the tie, Northampton will fancy their chances when it comes to using home territory to their advantage. However, we feel that Mansfield will do just enough on Wednesday evening to come through this tie, potentially benefitting from a goal in the first half on the break.


For additional data used by our team to analyse our suggested result please click here.


Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data

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How you voted: Northampton vs Mansfield

Northampton Town
52.8%
Draw
33.7%
Mansfield Town
13.5%
89
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