Preview: Harriers v Mansfield Town
August 21, 2010

Preview: Harriers v Mansfield Town

Harriers will be hoping to cut down on the mistakes this afternoon and bounce back with a victory when Mansfield come to Aggborough.

The first two games of the season have seen Harriers give entertaining, attacking, performances but defensive mistakes on Tuesday night in the game agaisnt Tamworth saw them fail to build upon their Opening Day victory at York.  Steve Burr may make changes to the starting line-up as he has an embarrassment of riches in attack; Lee Morris may be available to return from a hamstring injury, while his replacement Nick Wright gave a man-of-the-match performance capped with a goal and will probably keep his place in the team.  Marc Williams came off the bench to score in that game, too, and will want to celebrate his return to the Wales under-21 squad with a start.  At the back Tom Shaw will continue at right back in place of Lee Vaughan who sits out the third of his four-game ban.

Mansfield have had a similar start to the season to Harriers, winning on Opening Day - 3-1 against Forest Green - they followed that up with a defeat against one of the promoted teams, losing 3-0 at Fleetwood.  David Holdsworth may make changes to the team that lost at Fleetwood, Matt Somner has been out with sickness and has yet to feature this season but may be available this afternoon.  In attack they should have Paul Connor who was amongst the many trialist to pull on a Harriers shirt in pre-season; he is making the most of his move to Mansfield, however, scoring twice in the win over Forest Green.

Last season's corresponding fixture ended in a 3-1 Harriers win with goals from Matt Barnes-Homer, Gavin Caines and Chris McPhee.  Aggborough has not been a happy hunting ground for Mansfield in the past with four of their six previous meetings ending in Harriers wins.  Overall, though, The Stags have the edge with five wins to four from 12 encounters.

The referee today is Mark Heywood from Cheshire.  This will be his fourth time refereeing a Harriers game; last season he did the games at Tamworth and Worcester, both of which featured goals from McPhee.

I expect Harriers to line-up as follows (4-4-2): Lewis; Shaw, Mike Williams, Briscoe, Albrighton; Hankin, Briggs, Byrne; Gittings; McPhee, Wright.
Subs (from): Finnigan, Morris, Griffiths, Sharpe, Blair, Hadley, Marc Williams, Stevens.
Missing (suspended): Vaughan.

This afternoon's weather is set to be wet throughout, it is currently raining in Kidderminstser,  with a temperature around 20°C.