Crawley Town’s slump in form continued as they suffered a fifth defeat in their last six games at home to Mansfield Town.

Reds were second best throughout a low quality contest which was settled by Chris Beardsley’s header 15 minutes into the second half.

The Stags should have won more comfortably but a number of fine saves from goalkeeper Callum Preston kept Crawley in the game.

Mansfield were reduced to ten men in the 90th minute when Matt Green received a second booking for time wasting but Reds were unable to capitalise.

The result saw Mark Yates’s side drop a place to 17th in League Two while Mansfield are up to seventh.

Crawley were hardly able to get out of their own half during the opening 45 minutes as Mansfield took total control.

Reds only went in on level terms thanks to a combination of poor finishing and fine goalkeeping from Callum Preston.

Matt Green looked certain to score when he raced clear following a mistake by Lewis Young but Preston deflected his shot wide with his legs.

Green had an even better opportunity on the half hour when Josh Yorwerth misjudged a long ball but this time scuffed his effort wide under pressure from Young.

Preston was forced into action again when Matty Blair was allowed to cut inside the area from the left far too easily by Young with the rookie keeper diving full length to keep out his curling effort.

The goal the visitors deserved arrived 15 minutes into the second half.

Preston tipped over a free header from Beardsley from a corner but Reds did not head the warning as Beardsley got ahead of his marker to glance a header home from another Mal Benning delivery.

Mansfield were denied a second goal with 17 minutes to go when Preston superbly tipped over James Baxendale’s 20 yard curling effort at full stretch.

Crawley’s only real chance of the entire game came with five minutes to go when Sonny Bradley headed over from Simon Walton’s corner.

Green saw red right on 90 minutes for preventing Walton taking a throw-in quickly but it was the Stags who should scored a second in injury time when Blair broke clear only to be denied by the excellent Preston again.