County lost nearby, Stags up. Seventh race tight, may go down to. .
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County lost nearby, Stags up. Seventh race tight, may go down to the wire.

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NEWPORT County AFC have lost their shortest League Two trip of the season when Forest Green Rovers’ relegation was announced.

The Gloucestershire squad was on the edge of relegation after a humiliating defeat at Wrexham on Saturday, and their fate was sealed on Tuesday when Colchester overcame Grimsby 2-0 with goals from Tom Hopper and John Akinde.

It has been a frantic campaign at the New Lawn, beginning with extensive media coverage of temporary leader Hannah Dingley’s appointment.

She was bypassed for the top position, but David Horseman departed in December, player-coach Troy Deeney had a crazy six-game term in charge, and seasoned manager Steve Cotterill took over in January, but they were unable to grind their way to safety.

Forest Green will now attempt to return to the Football League at the first opportunity, and it appears like Sutton will follow them despite their excellent form to give themselves a wonderful escape.

Steve Morison’s side will be down if they lose at home to Crawley on Saturday, Colchester wins at Notts County, and Grimsby avoids defeat at home to Swindon.

Relegation is virtually resolved, and automatic promotion is complete as Mansfield defeated Accrington 2-1 to join Wrexham and Stockport in moving up. George Maris and Stephen Quinn scored for the Stags.

Nigel Clough, who was voted division Two manager of the year on Sunday, said: “It is a fantastic night and an incredible achievement for Mansfield to be playing in the top division for the first time in 22 years.

“This is for the thousands of supporters who came out tonight; some have supported the club for 50-60 years; this is for them.

“They’ve been through some difficult things here in the past, so it’s wonderful that they can relax now.

“Some supporters have said to me it’s the best season they have ever seen at Mansfield, not just the promotion but the football – and that is pleasing.”

Stockport were crowned champions after a 5-2 victory over Notts County, with Paddy Madden scoring a hat-trick in the first half, with the play-off race still to be decided.

MK Dons are certain to make the semi-finals, but Crewe are on the verge of elimination despite a dip in form.

Crawley and Barrow are in the final places after a 1-1 draw at Broadfield Stadium, while Walsall got within a point of the top seven after Danny Johnson struck in the 89th minute to secure a 2-1 victory over Swindon.

Surprisingly, Doncaster are now in a strong position to move into the top seven; they have risen from relegation danger to contention owing to eight wins in a row and will be in if the run continues.

 

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