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Boss praises players after gritty home win

19 August 2014

Cox pleased with determination as Clements’ early strike sinks Newport County

Manager Paul Cox has hailed his players for the grit and determination they showed to overcome Newport County and make it back-to-back wins at One Call Stadium.

Midfielder Chris Clements netted what turned out to be the match-winning goal in just the second minute and the victory has lifted us up to ninth position in Sky Bet League Two.

“It was an excellent victory,” said Cox. “They were some tired legs out there tonight and we called on a few [players] to go beyond what’s expected of them again, so the boys battled well, it was a tough game and it was nice to keep a clean-sheet.

“We could have probably done more in the final third and we made a few wrong decisions in trying to get the second goal, but it’s a good result against a good team.

“Newport are good at what they do. They’re effective, they’ve got good players and I can’t understand why they haven’t won a game this season, because the way they played tonight, they put us under the cosh.

“But I’m just really pleased with our boys. There were a few probably ‘running on empty’ late on, so it’s all credit to the boys – they’ve come through again.”

Our boss continued: “[Six points from three games] is an excellent return, but we’re not getting carried away.

“The bookmakers had us down for being relegation favourites at the beginning of the season and I think the boys have taken that personally and showed character a little bit of character and grit and determination.

“The boys have been absolutely tremendous and out of this world. The fans have done what I’ve called on them to do and they really got behind the boys tonight.

“There were some tired legs at the end of the game. It was physical, battling game and it didn’t have the most fluent football played, but it’s never easy when Newport and Mansfield come together.

“We showed loads of character, there was loads of plus points and the players are working hard for each other. Newport were a very different animal to Oxford, but we’ve came up trumps again – that’s all I can keep asking.”

Cox was also delighted for match-winning midfielder Chris Clements, who netted his first goal at One Call Stadium.

“It’s nice for him and he’s done well since he broke into the side,” said Cox. “He’s improving and developing consistency in his game and in his play and he’s taking that into 90 minutes plus in a game scenario.

“Now he needs to build on the game’s that he’s played, because I think there’s more to come from the kid.”

Paul Cox’s full post-match interview will soon be available to watch on Stags Player. To subscribe, click here.

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