Mitchell Rose has heaped praise on Mansfield Town’s ‘unbelievable’ defence after they recorded back-to-back clean sheets in last week’s tough Sky Bet League Two away double-header.
The midfielder has played a large part in the Stags’ strong start to the season with 13 appearances in all competitions so far, and the Doncaster-born man has been delighted to play a regular part whilst also proving his versatility in the Stags’ side.
He said: “Looking over the last three or four years, I haven’t played a lot of senior football so this has been a vital season for me to get senior games. The first ten to 12 games I was in the team and doing okay, I was relishing every opportunity.
“I’m grateful now to be back in the team and contributing to performances,” he added after a recent suspension saw him absent from Adam Murray’s squad temporarily.
Rose also went on to say: “If you look at the strength in depth of the squad, my natural position is central midfield but with the players we’ve got in there – Chappy (Adam Chapman), Chris Clements and Jamie McGuire – it makes it difficult for me to cement a position that I most want to be in.
“I have to be willing to play in other positions, and my performances in the other positions will then warrant me an opportunity to play in centre midfield so I’ve got to make sure wherever I play I’m contributing.”
Speaking about the backline’s displays so far this season and having to play at right-back in the recent away win at Yeovil, the ex-Rotherham United player declared: “The defence has been unbelievable, they’ve kept the most clean sheets in the league so to be in there in my unnatural position, I had to make sure I was on the top of my game with no room for error.
“I’ve been looking at that week since I first came (against Yeovil and Portsmouth). Coming out of the back of that week to get four points is massive for us and it puts us in a great position for Saturday – I think if we’d been at our best with the ball against Portsmouth we’d have taken all three points.”
Looking ahead to Saturday’s Sky Bet League Two contest with tenth-placed Wycombe Wanderers, Rose believes the side must not think too far ahead with the Emirates FA Cup tie against Oldham Athletic seven days later.
“We’re planning for the Wycombe game in training and the attention to detail is great for us and puts us in a great position to go out and get three points on Saturday. We’re looking forward to both games but we have to take one game at a time – our priority now is Wycombe on Saturday.
“We’re getting stronger every single game. You can’t take anything away from Wycombe, they’re a very good side. We’ll come up against some very good players on Saturday, so we have to compete well. No game is easy in this league, every game is a difficult game.”