By Francis Moore
Mansfield Town will beat Bolton Wanderers at the One Call Stadium tonight.
That’s the view of two Bolton pundits who believe their side will be no match for the rampant Stags.
Since their last meeting back in November, Mansfield and Bolton have both been on rather different trajectories, with Stags currently on a five game winning streak while Bolton are without a win in six league outings.
And, according to Chris Mann of the Burnden Aces fanzine, it all points to another win for Mansfield.
“If the game follows the trend of many that have come before it, Mansfield will probably score early, hold off a 10-15 minute spell of pressure and then have it easy until we have a late surge,” he said.
“It’s unpredictable whether we’ll fight back to earn a point or collapse into a heavy defeat.
“Bolton have won just one of their last nine. That was a 1-0 win at Cheltenham back in mid-December. We haven’t so much as held a lead in any of our six games since then, whilst Mansfield have been in good form since Nigel Clough was appointed days after our previous meeting. This pessimistic Trotter is going for a 3-1 Mansfield win.”
And his views are echoed by Lion Of Vienna Suite writer, Lee Tennant.
“While we have some notable away performances and we have generally been better away from the UniBol Stadium compared to the dross we’ve served up at home, sitting 12th in the away league table compared to 4th-bottom at home, I can’t see anything but a Stags win here,” he said.
“I can’t see us coping against such a rejuvenated side with five straight wins and some great options up front. 2 -0 Mansfield.
“Jamie Reid and George Maris with the goals. Could this be the end for Ian Evatt? If only we’d gone for Nigel Clough.”
Bolton were relegated from the top flight in 2012, then relegated again in 2016. Josh Vela and Gary Madine fired them back up to the Championship where they scraped to survival in 2017/18, but then suffered successive relegations, aided by a 12-point deduction in League One for entering administration in summer 2019.