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Stags nearing top gear as purple patch continues

13 November 2017

Stags' boss Steve Evans believes his side are 'getting nearer' to hitting top form after Saturday's 1-0 win over Coventry City extended their unbeaten run to seven games in all competitions.

Saturday's magnificent victory at Coventry saw us edge closer to the Sky Bet League Two play-offs as we claimed our fourth win in the last seven matches - the others ending as draws. 

And although he admits there's still room for improvement, the boss can see his side developing as the season progresses.

"I think we're getting nearer, but I think we've got a long, long way to go," the Stags' chief said.

"I really do believe that as the season develops we'll get better, we'll get stronger and we'll try and make the group a little bit stronger again in January.

"We always believed that we're going to have the inconsistencies that are relevant in our game, the statistics show it. We look at the stats; if we beat Exeter at home – which we should, very, very comfortably – we'd be sitting in the play-offs today, but we're not. We still have to bridge that gap.

"I think we have a fantastic dressing room. They're a very level-headed group, they want the group to be successful. They want the dressing room to succeed for the chairman and the chief exec (John and Carolyn Radford) and for the supporters. There's a real focus in there and they know how hard the staff are working."


"It will be a strong reserves' side and there will be some players who will be playing in that reserves' side who we will be looking for big performances from."

Steve Evans, manager

Stags' reserves will take on local rivals Notts County in the Central League Cup tomorrow at Rainworth Miners Welfare (1.00pm kick-off) and the gaffer is looking for 'big performances' from those selected.

"I don't know what Kevin [Nolan, Notts County manager] will do but everybody knows our strategy of players who are not playing in the first team play in the reserves.

"We don't say 'play on the training ground and we'll look after you and we'll be nice to you', we say 'you have to earn your right to be in the team on Saturday'.

"It will be a strong reserves' side and there will be some players who will be playing in that reserves' side who we will be looking for big performances from.

"Obviously Danny [Rose] will be out [through suspension] but there will be more changes than Danny Rose when we play Stevenage at home. I've got a different team in my thought process but I need performances."

Striker Lee Angol (knee) and defender David Mirfin (hamstring) will both miss tomorrow's game, but the gaffer hopes to welcome the pair back to training later this week.

Meanwhile, the manager is yet to decide whether defender Krystian Pearce and midfielder Jacob Mellis will play for the reserves after the duo missed Saturday's win over Coventry through suspension.

"[Lee Angol] won't play in the reserves on Tuesday and neither will David Mirfin.

"I know they've been in working hard over the weekend. They're getting pretty close now to being back on the grass. We need them back on the grass now with the medical team for a day or two.

"We're going to make a decision on Jacob [Mellis] and Pearcey (Krystian Pearce) in the next hour when we see them.

"With the other two, who were suspended, of course they're immediately back with us today."

Supporters will be able to login to iFollow Stags to view the manager's full news conference later today.


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