Stags’ boss Adam Murray expects his squad to be faced with different challenges in the trio of home fixtures which they face during the next week.
We will welcome EFL Championship side Blackburn Rovers to One Call Stadium tomorrow night in the EFL Cup, before the Sky Bet League Two double-header against Cheltenham Town and Yeovil Town on Saturday and next Tuesday, respectively.
However, Murray says he will focus on one game at a time, with each fixture presenting his side with different hurdles to overcome.
“It’s three good games, all with different challenges, all with different things we’re going to have to put in to place, but we just want points,” Murray said at Monday morning’s news conference.
“We want points on the board, home or away, we want points and I think getting Saturday’s first game under our belts will do us the world of good. But our first focus is Blackburn and that’ll be our work today. We need to make sure in between these games we recover right.”
After opening the season with a thrilling 3-2 victory over Newport County on Saturday, the manager says it is imperative that he keeps his side as fresh as possible throughout the first month of the season, with a minimum of 52 games ahead of them throughout the 2016/17 campaign.
“We’ve got a couple of niggles that we probably won’t risk [against Blackburn] to be honest with you, but the pleasing thing for us, and what we’re going to try and do, is keep everybody fresh throughout the whole month without risking any stupid injuries.
“I do believe that if we can keep the majority of this squad fresh for long periods of the season then we can stay competitive.
“I think you saw on Saturday that when things weren’t quite going our way or we needed to get a little bit more energy or we needed to up the tempo again, we were allowed to make the changes that enabled us to do that so that’s what we want to keep.”
Without wanting to give too much away in regard to team selection for tomorrow evening’s visit of Rovers, the gaffer revealed that three omissions from Saturday’s matchday squad – defender Krystian Pearce, midfielder Jack Thomas and striker Darius Henderson – are all nearing match fitness, but may still not be risked.
“They’re all very close. Jack Thomas is very close; whether we throw him in tomorrow, we’ll decide today. It could be a good opportunity to get him some minutes, it might be too much of a risk, so they’ll be things we weigh up today.
“[Darius is] somebody that if we don’t feel it’s right, we’re not going to risk it. Darius is going to be a big player for us; if that’s in 24 hours or it’s in two weeks, we’ve got to be very sensible with how we go about it.”
Supporters can watch Adam Murray’s news conference on Stags PlayerHD.