Stags’ boss Adam Murray wants his side to be more positive in the final third during the remainder of the season after today’s 1-1 draw with York City.
Murray saw his side have to settle for a point against the Minstermen this afternoon after Krystian Pearce’s fine header cancelled out Dave Winfield’s early opener.
And the manager says his side should have won the game in the second half after seeing them carve out a number of opportunities to take the lead in a dominant display.
“If we don’t take our chances, we aren’t going to win football matches. It’s not as if we aren’t creating chances and we aren’t putting people on the back foot, but we need to score goals and that’s the key factor at the minute,” Murray said.
“We need to be more positive – we get into areas and we go backwards and square. It’s [about] getting that balance [between] pointless possession and penetrative possession and that’s what we need to do.”
However, Murray was pleased that his side scored from a set piece, something which he feels they should have scored more of in recent weeks.
“We work hard on them. We probably haven’t scored as many as we should in the last few weeks. At the start of the season they were coming off really well, but people have become aware of them. It’s nice to get one from that.”
The gaffer was disappointed with how his side conceded the opening goal of the game – but admits he is pleased that the Stags’ defence continue to make it hard for other teams to break them down.
“It’s a sloppy goal from us but as I keep saying, we don’t look like we’re going to get opened up by teams – the only time we look like we’re going to concede is from our own lapses of concentration or our own mistakes.”
Murray continued: “It’s gone straight through a gap in our back line and any ball in that area is going to cause you problems. Any touch and it’s a goal and that was the case.”
The gaffer had praise for substitute Nathan Thomas, who caused the York defence a number of problems after his introduction in the 56th minute, but says the winger needs to produce positive displays on a regular basis.
“It was touch and go whether we went with him or Blairy (Matty Blair) today but what we need to get out of Nathan is consistency.
“It can’t be ten or fifteen minutes here and there, it’s got to be a 90-minute job and it’s part of Nathan’s development.
“He’s had more starts here than he has in his whole career so he’s not going to be someone who’s going to play week-in-week-out at 100 percent. His first target is 60 minutes [and] when he can be excellent for 60 minutes, then we’ll go for 90 minutes.”
After seeing 3,958 fans pack in to One Call Stadium this afternoon, Murray was grateful for the support of the Stags’ faithful throughout the afternoon.
“I thought the fans were superb today, even when we went that goal down. They lifted us and they backed us and I think they saw the difference in the second half.
“It made a difference, not only to me personally but the team because to have noise and that backing constantly made the difference and we’re gutted we couldn’t give them the win in the end,” Murray said.
You can watch Murray's post-match interview, in full, on Stags Player.