Youth defender Jordan Armsden believes Stags’ under-18s were ‘unlucky’ not to progress to the fourth round of the FA Youth Cup, after a narrow 2-1 defeat to Bournemouth at Vitality Stadium on Wednesday night.
Despite taking the lead through Noah Stokes, the Stags conceded in the dying minutes of the game as the hosts sparked a second half comeback, finding the winning goal in the 90th minute through Christian Saydee.
Speaking after Wednesday night’s clash, Armsden praised the team’s performance, yet reflected on the chances missed in the contest.
“We played well,” he said. “We started the game well going 1-0 up but we lost our shape a bit in the second half and unfortunately conceded two goals which lost us the game. But, I think on the whole, the boys played really well.
“I feel like if we had taken our chances then maybe it would have given us more of a chance later in the game, but obviously it’s unlucky. Jimmy Knowles is unlucky as he’s through one-on-one and the ‘keeper makes a good save.”
When asked how he thought the experience would help him as a player, he replied: “I think it will help me develop my game management late on in the game.
"I feel like if we had taken our chances then maybe it would have given us more of a chance later in the game, but obviously it’s unlucky."
“Then, obviously when you go 2-1 down and it’s late on in the game, learning how to come back from that again.”
The youth team face local rivals Chesterfield on Saturday in a big game for the squad, who Armsden says want to bounce back following the defeat in Bournemouth.
“I think we’re doing quite well [this season] to be fair. We just need to keep at it, keep getting wins and clean sheets.
“We’ve got to pick ourselves up from the loss today [Wednesday] and then go again on Saturday, keep up the high pressing again and then try and hopefully get more goals and a clean sheet.”
Stags’ under-18s, who sit second in the EFL Youth Alliance table, are set face the Spireites’ under-18s at St George’s Park Graves (11am kick-off) on Saturday 15 December in their next league fixture.