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Hawkins starts: The predicted Mansfield Town XI to face Port Vale on Saturday



It’s the big one for Mansfield this weekend, as they look to try and seal promotion from League Two and head up into the third tier of English football.

The Stags finished in seventh place and only just scraped into the play-off spots but managed to see off Northampton in the semi-finals of the competition and will now face off against Port Vale to seal a jump up to League One.

It won’t be easy, with the Valiants themselves managing to see off a solid Swindon Town side in the semi-finals. Both clubs then will be up for it – and Mansfield will want to be the victors when push comes to shove.

Here then, is the predicted starting XI for the side ahead of the game…

Considering Mansfield were able to see off Northampton over two legs so well, it would be a mistake to really tinker with the side from the semi-finals. With no fresh injuries, it could be the same team again after they kept a clean sheet and sealed another victory last time out.

Rhys Oates has nine goals in the league so far this campaign but struggled to really get a grasp of the game in the second leg, however, he should lead the line again here, with Jordan Bowery on the left and Lucas Akins on the right. Bowery himself has eight goals and five assists, so there are plenty of goals in that forward line.

Quiz: The big Mansfield Town striker quiz – Score over 80% and you can call yourself a true Stags fan

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How many goals has Jordan Bowery scored for Mansfield this season?

In the centre of the field, John-Joe O’Toole has been excellent in the play-offs so far and will likely slot in alongside Kieran Wallace and Stephen Quinn, who, despite being 36-years-old, is still doing well in League Two.

At the back, Stephen McLaughlin bagged the winner from full-back last time around and is a certain starter for the Wembley final while, on the other flank, it was Elliott Hewitt that bagged the assist and should reprise his role.

Finally, the central pairing should be James Perch and Oliver Hawkins who was arguably the standout player of the fixture in the second leg.

Writer for Football League World.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Hawkins starts: The predicted Mansfield Town XI to face Port Vale on Saturday

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