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Ebbsfleet United 3-1 Mansfield Town
EBBSFLEET United secured their first home win of the season with victory against Mansfield Town on Saturday afternoon at Stonebridge Road.
The opening half hour saw lots of exchanging of possession as both sides tried to break the deadlock, but their attempts were unsuccessful.
The contest them became heated as Matt Green was sent off for the Stags for violent conduct after a clash with Fleet skipper Paul Lorraine.
Ebbsfleet tried to take advantage of the extra man but none of their immediate attacks came to fruition and it was the 10 men of Mansfield who scored the opening goal.
Lindon Meikle was hacked down in the penalty box by Liam Bellamy and Louis Briscoe converted from the spot, firing into the top corner four minutes before the break.
However, the home side came out fighting in the second half and Joe Howe saw his shot just go over immediately after the restart.
Ebbsfleet’s pressure was then rewarded with a pair of goals in the space of two minutes.
Howe picked out Nathan Elder, who had the simple task of heading home the equaliser from seven yards with half an hour remaining.
And almost immediately a corner which failed to be dealt with by the Mansfield defence fell to the feet of Phil Walsh, who poked a shot past Alan Marriott to give Fleet the lead.
Neil Barrett came close to extending Ebbsfleet’s advantage but despite wrong footing the keeper, the effort trickled agonisingly wide.
With just 10 minutes remaining Ebbsfleet put the final nail in Mansfield’s coffin when Elder was brought down in the area and Liam Enver-Marum coolly sent the keeper the wrong way from the resulting spot kick.
The frustration of losing the lead was clear to see from Mansfield manager Paul Cox and his day was made worse when he was sent to the stands with just minutes remaining.
This win has ended Ebbsfleet’s poor run of form which saw them fail to get a victory since the opening game of the season.
This Saturday they travel to Southport, kick-off 3pm.
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Ebbsfleet United: Edwards, Blake, Ada, Walsh, Lorraine, Enver-Marum, Marwa (Phipp 78), Elder (Williams 87), Howe, Barrett, Bellamy (Folkes 46). Subs not used: Menz, Azeez. Att: 828.
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