Mansfield Town recorded their ninth away league win of the campaign for the first time since the 2003-04 season today and manager Adam Murray says his side stuck to a game plan ‘perfectly’.
A goal in either half from Colin Daniel and Reggie Lambe secured a 2-1 victory over Carlisle United on a beautiful day at Brunton Park, despite Tom Miller’s late consolation goal.
And boss Murray, who travelled to Cumbria to watch the Blues’ 1-0 victory over Hartlepool in midweek, says his side’s disciplined performance paid dividends.
Murray said: “We knew that we had to put a structure and a game plan in place that was disciplined, organised and we looked to catch them on the counter attack.
“We wanted to suck them in and catch them on the break and it worked perfectly. I think [conceding] at the end, when you do have to stay disciplined and focussed for that long, it takes it out of you physically and mentally.
“The most pleasing thing for me is they stuck to the gameplan today. It wasn’t pretty at times, I don’t apologise for that – we came here to make it scrappy, we came here to make it horrible and we did just that."
The boss had praise for left-back Mal Benning, who started the game on the bench but replaced Colin Daniel in the first half after the goalscorer suffered a back injury.
“I haven’t spoken to him (Daniel) properly but I don’t know if it was a ‘whack’ or whether he’s landed on it funny but he couldn’t move so we put Mal on and we spoke about Mal having a tough time lately, but I thought he was absolutely superb, so well done Mal!”
After making two goal-line clearances at Brunton Park this afternoon, the manager also praised midfielder Adam Chapman, who he says was ‘unbelievable’ today.
“He’s one of these, sometimes he puts performances in that go unnoticed. Sometimes, because he’s a risk taker with his passing, because he’s got a great range on him, he’ll make two or three bad passes on the bounce and he’ll get 'hammered' for them.
“But the fans need to get behind Chappy, because he’s here next season. When he’s confident and he’s got people behind him, he’s one of our influential players. He showed today, he went through brick walls – he’s cleared two off the line, he’s put Greeny in three or four times and he’s a leader of men.”
Finally, Murray says his staff were ‘brilliant’ during today's game, with regards to the information they relayed to him whilst the match was ongoing.
“My mind was going 100 miles-per-hour and the staff were clear and concise with some of their information, I went with some of the information they gave me.
“I see why the youth team were top of the league now with some of the things Scott (Rickards) said, and people know that Karl’s (Hawley) been in all week – he’s probably been a little bit more than just the forward coach – he’s been working a lot on our attacking play as a team and because the lads have got so much respect for him for what he’s done, he’s been a massive voice in the changing room this week.”