After seeing his side leap into the play-off positions after Saturday’s 4-0 win over Crawley, the next goal of ambitious Mansfield Town boss Adam Murray’s is to break into the top three of League Two.
Goals from Nathan Thomas, Mitchell Rose, Matt Green and Craig Westcarr saw the Stags pick up their first home win of the season and catapult them into the top seven.
When asked what his next aim was after breaking into the top seven at this morning’s news conference, Murray said: “Get in the top three.
"We’ve got a focus in the group that we want to keep putting the foot down on the pedal and I’ve said from day one ‘let’s keep that optimism but keep it balanced with the realism.’
“I believe we’re on the right process and I’ll do that process in my time and I’ll make those steps in my time when I believe the group’s ready to keep moving forward. We’re in a good place at the minute but it’s all about keeping the focus about where we’ve come from, where we want to get to and keeping the pace of that journey right.
“It’s a patient process, we changed from playing with a number four to a number 10 and an out-and-out winger on Saturday which was a step in the direction we want to go.”
The focus of Murray’s side is now firmly on this weekend’s game against Luton and the gaffer said they are making the trip to Kenilworth Road with one thing in mind; winning.
“Our feet go back on the floor today, there’s posters up all around the ground today that the only focus is Luton, because [last] Saturday has gone now. We go to a very tough place to play on Saturday and we’re going there to win.
“We all know it’s a tough place to go and they’ve probably not had the start that a club like Luton expects, but they’ve got an exceptional manager down there and exceptional staff. Me and my staff have got a lot of time for them, we’ve had a few chats with them and they’re excellent people who know the game inside out.
“We know we’re going into ‘the lion’s den’ on Saturday but we’re fully focussed and confident in our own ability and we’re not going there to make the numbers up.”
After confirming that there’s no long-lasting damage to Nicky Hunt, who was substituted after receiving a kick on the ankle under a challenge which saw Crawley midfielder Gwion Edwards dismissed, Murray was delighted to say that Matty Blair has returned to full training today, along with goalkeeper Scott Shearer.
“He’s been training with us [in the] last couple of weeks and I said in press last week that he’s as fit as anything. The only one keeping up with him is Greeny (Matt Green) and we’re a fit bunch, so that speaks volumes.
“He [Matty Blair] got the all-clear from the specialist on Friday so he can fully throw himself into action [now], so he’s on ‘the launching pad’ this morning. He’s obviously nervous because it’s been such a long time but what an addition to have coming back in at this stage in the season. It’s like signing a new ‘X-Factor’ player, someone who can make a difference.”
You can see the interview in full on Stags Player.