Stags’ boss David Flitcroft spoke of the ‘phenomenal’ relationship between the players and the Mansfield supporters after his charges ran out 2-1 winners over Bury in a captivating contest at One Call Stadium.
Second half strikes from CJ Hamilton and Tyler Walker secured the three points that pushed the Stags to third in the table, while also stretching the unbeaten run in Sky Bet League Two to 15 games.
The manager says that the rapport between the players and fans spurred his side on to victory in the Boxing Day clash.
“We didn’t start off too well,” he said. “But after that, when we got our teeth into it, the engagement between supporters and players, you can feel that.
“They [fans] enjoy watching the players and the players love playing in this stadium. This place [One Call Stadium], on Boxing Day, was absolutely phenomenal.
“I’ve seen the supporters love watching their team, and that’s what we have to serve to them. That’s the most pleasing thing for me today.
“When I see the players play for the supporters like that, I think it’s phenomenal.
“We moved the ball brilliantly and hurt them at every opportunity. The energy from Tyler Walker, CJ [Hamilton] and Jacob Mellis, they [Bury] couldn’t get a foothold in the game at all.
"I’ve seen the supporters love watching their team, and that’s what we have to serve to them. That’s the most pleasing thing for me today."
“Their ‘keeper, [Joe] Murphy, had an absolute worldie today. Bury are a team that win a lot of football matches, but they couldn’t get out of their half.
“The goal at the end leaves just a bit of disappointment in there, but what a phenomenal day. Today at home, the test for us was being brave and moving the ball.”
The boss was full of praise for Mellis and Hamilton, who linked up superbly for the opening goal of the contest.
“The run [by Hamilton for his goal] was brilliant. I always say the run makes the passer’s mind up, and it was so definitive.
“The only words I can describe it [Mellis pass] with are top, top class. If you watch Match of the Day and a Tottenham player or a Man United player does it, we’d be drooling over it.
“The supporters are appreciating the football, that’s the one thing that I love. They love CJ [Hamilton] in this stadium, and I love him!
“We were absolutely cruising at 2-0, and to concede that late one, I wanted a clean sheet and the boys did.
“The players have been brilliant today and they’ve been so dedicated over the Christmas period. The players deserve all the credit today.”
The Stags’ chief also maintained that his side are continuously improving as we approach the halfway point of the campaign.
“We’ve been brilliant all season at home. The football we play at home, I really enjoy watching us. We’re fit enough to see a game out or score goals.
“There’s a lot of pace in the team. We’re nearly at the halfway stage [of the season] and we still have the games in hand.
“The boys keep improving and getting better, and they have to hold onto that and protect it. You only remember the ones you win, and winning football, that’s what we’re bringing to the club.
“It is personal [against Bury] because it is a club where I spent a lot of good time. I put all my effort, energy and time into the job.
“We now have to stay consistent and keep that belief. The players are improving and getting better game-by-game.
“We do push them hard and ask them every day to give all that they’ve got, and the players are stepping up to the challenge.”
iFollow Stags subscribers can watch the manager’s interview in full by logging into mansfieldtown.net/ifollow later today.