Boss encouraged by players' display against MK Dons.
Manager Adam Murray was pleased with how his players’ shape and discipline was tested in tonight’s 1-1 draw with SkyBet Championship new boys Milton Keynes Dons.
Nathan Thomas’ curling strike on the stroke of half-time put us ahead, but the visitors levelled shortly after half-time through Daniel Powell’s follow-up attempt after his initial effort was blocked by Stags’ ‘keeper Scott Shearer.
For the neutral it was an entertaining affair, but one which Murray was very pleased with.
Giving his verdict on the game to the local press in his post-match interview, our boss said: “We knew exactly what we needed, wanted and expected [from this game].
“I said in the press before that we’re starting to work on the defensive side of our game and our organisational side. With the two tests coming up, MK Dons and Leicester City, we knew that we’d get that so it was exactly what we wanted.
“In the first half especially, they tested our shape, tested our discipline. We set-up not to go and try and win the ball back all over the pitch. We wanted to defend deep and make sure that we had that organisation when we do come up against the better teams in this league this season.
“Obviously it’s not going to be for as periods as long as that, but we all know what we can do if we can keep the discipline to see it through. I thought we did that really well and when we did nick [the ball] it was a case of how quickly we could break and score and it worked perfectly.”
Murray added: “We thank MK Dons for giving us a game tonight because they’re a top quality outfit. To be able to test ourselves and the things we’re working on against a team which moves the ball as cleverly as they do, is brilliant for us. We couldn’t have had a better test and I’m really chuffed with things tonight.”