Match 06
15th September 1990
Mansfield Town (away)




City made it two away wins out of two with a superb performance at Field Mill which demonstrated how quickly the young Exeter side has adapted to life in the Third Division.

Early on, Mansfield showed their predilection for deep crosses into the City box, with Whitehead and Dryden getting in strong clearances from dangerous free-kicks. Exeter, as always, looked to push forward through midfield, and nearly reaped a quick reward for their neat football as Gordon Hobson's shot on the run was well saved by keeper Beasley.

However, the opening goal came from the game's first corner after 14 minutes. Brian McDermott's accurate cross was flicked across goal by Shaun Taylor for Richard Dryden to head his second goal of the season from close range. There were more chances for both sides in an open and attacking first-half. Shaun Taylor headed City's best effort just wide from McDermott's free-kick while Kevin Miller twice came off his line to clear upfield (on one occasion after a brief dribble !) and got down well to save a Steve Charles drive just before the break.

Miller was called into action again early in the second half, saving brilliantly from experienced striker Trevor Christie's far post header. As Mansfield kept City penned intheir own half, only uninspired finishing and determined defending preserved the precious Exeter lead.

With an hour gone, two City corners relieved the pressure a little and resulted in Steve Neville sending a disappointing shot wide whilst in space just beyond the far post. As City began to assert themselves on the game again, Scott Hiley cut inside and cracked a thirty yard goalbound effort which was well saved by the diving Beasley.

Gordon Hobson had a clear cut chance to make the game safe a few minutes later, Hiley's through ball finding him onside and in acres of space just inside the area, but with only the keeper to beat Hobson scuffed the ball inches wide.

City sewed the game up with twelve minutes remaining, but not until a virtual open goal had been missed by Stags substitute Leishman and the hard working Mark Cooper had saved a stranded Kevin Miller.

Gordon Hobson's goal came about through sheer determination and industry. Hobson found himself the only man forward for City, but ran at the hastily retreating Mansfield defence and, having seemingly been forced to take the ball too far and wide, drilled a near post shot into the top corner to send the already vocal 220 City fans into ecstatic celebrations.

From that point on, it was easy for City, as they coasted home to another three points to secure fourth spot in the table.



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