Stags’ defender Krystian Pearce says he and his fellow defenders should take pride in their solid defensive record.
The Birmingham-born former Torquay defender has made ten appearances for the Stags this season and has been an ever-present since returning from injury in the 2-1 away victory against Leyton Orient in August.
Stags have the joint second-best defensive record in Sky Bet League Two this season, conceding just two more goals than league leaders Plymouth Argyle and Pearce believes that the record is something to be proud of.
“We’re buzzing defensively with how we’re performing at the moment. We’re just looking to maintain it and keep it going throughout the season,” Pearce said.
“We’ve got one of the best defensive records in the league at the moment and we take pride in that and try and get as many clean sheets as possible.”
Since returning to the side following the knee injury which kept him out for the opening five games of the season, the former England youth international has partnered Kyle Howkins, Lee Collins, Alex Iacovitti and George Taft at the centre of defence and he says the competition for places helps to keep the players’ standards high.
“Kyle’s just come back to training the other day so obviously there’s a lot of centre-backs now and Lee Collins was playing in midfield but now he’s back in defence so there’s a lot of competition for places at the moment.
“They’re all good players so hopefully I can just keep my place and then whoever I’m playing with, hopefully we can form a good partnership and maintain that defensive record.”
After seeing striker Matt Green named on the bench for the Stags’ last four matches, Pearce says it has acted as warning to the rest of the squad that they will need to fight for their place in the team.
“Obviously Matt Green’s a big figure at the club, so the players know that if Matt Green’s not getting in the team, then we all have to fight for our place because no-one’s safe in the team.”
Pearce, alongside skipper Lee Collins, defender valiantly against one of the most potent strike-forces in the league in the form of Notts County duo Jon Stead and Jonathan Forte last weekend and the former Birmingham City man believes the Stags can now use the victory as a platform to build on.
“I think everyone’s buzzing at the moment. Obviously it’s a big derby win on Saturday which kicks us on. We’re all in a good place at the moment, the team spirit’s high at the moment and hopefully we can maintain that.
“Getting back-to-back wins is what you aim to do so if we’re serious about promotion, we’ve got to be putting back-to-back wins on the board.”
Supporters can view Krystian Pearce’s news conference, in full, on Stags PlayerHD.