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Stags’ boss wants ‘professionalism’ to make the difference in cup tie

30 November 2017

Stags' boss Steve Evans is treating Sunday's Emirates FA Cup second round tie against non-league side Guiseley like 'any other game' as he looks to clinch a spot in the third round of the competition.

We defeated Evo-Stik side Shaw Lane in the first round with a 3-1 win to set up Sunday's tie with National League side Guiseley at One Call Stadium (2.00pm kick-off).

The Lions, who sit 40 places below the Stags in 23rd position in the National League, defeated League Two side Accrington Stanley on penalties to set-up the tie with the Stags, after nothing could split the two sides in their 1-1 draw after extra-time in their first round replay.

And the gaffer insists there will be no change in approach to the match as they aim to progress in the competition.

"It will be about mental application for us. It will be about [being] professional, as it was at Shaw Lane.

"It's a big game and they've got some players that have played much higher. They've got players that have played in the Championship and a lot in League One.

"What we know is they've got good players. What we know is one or two of them have played for me, one or two of them have played for the Stags.

"It will be about what we do, but we've got total respect not only for Guiseley, but for every opponent we face in the season.

"It's the FA Cup. We're at home. It's an opportunity to progress and get into the third round and that's our only focus.

"We'll be treating this just the same as we'll treat it when we go to Crawley or when we host Yeovil or Morecambe in the weeks after that."

The boss expects to make 'four or five' changes to the side which drew with Chesterfield last week after reflecting on a below-par second half performance against the Spireites.

"It's the FA Cup. We're at home. It's an opportunity to progress and get into the third round and that's our only focus."

Steve Evans, manager

"We'll change the team around on Sunday anyway; we'll make changes because it will be reflective because I wasn't happy with the second half on Saturday against Chesterfield.

"It's reflective of people working hard and proving a point to be in the team. I've said many times, don't come into the office and talk about a point, prove a point.

"I would think, compared to the starting team for Chesterfield, we're probably talking four [changes], five maybe.

"We've got a big week ahead; we have Sunday in the FA Cup, we have the Checkatrade up at Blackpool where there will be wholesale changes, I can assure you of that. It's (the Checkatrade Trophy) still not a priority."

Frontman Lee Angol, who has been out for a month with a knee injury, was an unused substitute in Tuesday's friendly with Clipstone, whilst fellow striker Kane Hemmings is expected to return to training on Friday after missing last week's draw with a slight calf strain.

The manager said: "Hopefully [Kane Hemmings will] be fit for Sunday. We're expecting him back into training on Friday - we missed him on Saturday.

"He led the line with some real guile and expertise at Port Vale and he did against Stevenage and he's on a good little run of form in terms of finding the net.

"A few fibres in his calf were stretched and tight and we just can't take a risk with him because if you run the risk, you could be away for six weeks and not six days."

Supporters can login to iFollow Stags to view the manager's full news conference.

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