Stags’ striker Matt Green says he’s ‘feeling a lot sharper’ at this stage of pre-season in comparison to last year as he gets ready for the new season.
The 29-year-old scored 16 goals in 46 appearances in all competitions last season after spending almost two years on the sidelines with a serious knee injury whilst at former club Birmingham City and he’s now aiming to progress even further next season.
“I’m sure it was good for the gaffer and the staff around to see that I can get through 47 games and knock the odd goal in as well last season, which was great for me as well personally but also very helpful for the team,” Green said.
“It’ll be something I’ll be looking to improve on this season and like I say, I feel a lot sharper going into pre-season this season compared to last, so hopefully it’ll be something to build on.”
Last season’s top scorer has regularly lined up alongside summer signing Danny Rose in attack during pre-season and Green says that he’s enjoyed linking up with the former Bury man, but also praised the Stags’ diverse talents in the final third.
“He’s a talented lad. You can see that he’s got experience in League football and he plays the ‘percentages’ of the game very well.
“Whether it’s me or one of the other strikers, we benefit from him and I think we all complement each other at the moment.”
The former Oxford United frontman scored the opener in Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Alfreton Town to take his pre-season tally to three goals, however Green says although it’s nice to score goals, pre-season is more about improving fitness levels.
“It’s always good to score goals and it was a not very complicated one [on Saturday], so I’ll take it, but we had a lot of chances and we got the ball in decent areas so we’ll be looking to make them count in the next couple of weeks and pressing on to the first game of the season.”
Although the Bath-born man refuses to set targets at the beginning of the campaign, he hopes to help Adam Murray’s new-look side achieve success next season.
“I’ve never been a person to put targets in there; if there’s a goal there to be scored I’ll try my best to score it and hopefully that tally will add up to a total that everyone will be happy with, with some success as well at the end of it.
“It's (the squad) definitely a lot stronger, a lot quicker, [there’s] a lot of pace in the team. We’re playing a lot better standard of football, we’re playing with a lot more patience and we’re a lot more organised, you’ve seen that over the last few games that we’ve played and I’m really excited about it.”
Supporters can watch Matt Green’s interview on Stags PlayerHD.