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Marriott: Confidence is restored

23 August 2013

Goalkeeper Alan Marriott feels that his confidence has been restored, after keeping two clean-sheets in the past two weeks.

Our veteran custodian registered his first shut-out of the League Two campaign a fortnight ago, as we drew with Exeter City at One Call Stadium.

Marriott then kept his second clean-sheet in as many matches in our win at Wycombe Wanderers last Saturday, which was also his 55th in Stags’ colours.

“The first couple of games weren’t particularly great for me, but I’m pleased to have kept two clean sheets and it’s been a bit of a confidence boost,” said Marriott.

“If you make a mistake you work twice as hard to try and put things right, but sometimes psychologically things can build up and it leads to another mistake.

“When you get a clean-sheet though, you feel more relaxed and confidence is restored again.”

Marriott, our joint-longest serving player, featured in every season of our five-year non-league exile, but boasts previous Football League experience with Lincoln City.

However, the 34-year-old insists the term ‘Football League’ can sometimes intimidate players.

He continued: “When the term ‘Football League’ gets mentioned, it can intimidate people – especially lads who haven’t previously played at this level in their career.”

“The standards do improve, but you’re just playing at bigger stadiums, against teams with bigger names in their squad. 

“I think we showed last year that we are capable of mixing it against other teams. Now we’ve got a win under our belt, it is also a great platform to build from.

“Everyone has found their feet and has realised that there isn’t anything to be feared.”

Our shot-stopper also believes we have some excellent versatility in our squad.

He added: “I think the current system that we’re operating with [a flat-back-three] compliments the squad really well.

“We’re quite flexible and so is the manager. We’ve got good strength in depth in the centre-half department, and some midfielders who are very creative.

“James Jennings and Lee Beevers are versatile as they can play at either full-back or wing-back. It shows what a good squad we have.”

Interviews with Alan Marriott and Jamie McGuire are now available on StagsPlayer. To subscribe, click here.

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