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Interviews

Commanding Stags deserved to beat U's, says Benning

13 January 2018

After seeing two of his own rasping drives go marginally over the bar among frequent Stags' attacks, energetic left-back Mal Benning believes we should have left the Abbey Stadium with all three points this afternoon.

The draw, during which Stags dominated for long spells in the second half, extends their superb run of form to just one defeat in 20 games in all competitions.

And speaking post-match, the 24-year-old believes the Stags should have returned home with what would have been a deserved three points.

"I think we should have nicked the three points," said the former Walsall man.

"I don't think they really threatened much. I don't think [Stags' stopper Conrad Logan] made too many saves; he made one decent save but I think that's it really.

"Cambridge were playing a diamond so I knew I was the 'out ball'. Every time I got it, they'd identified CJ [Hamilton] as a threat so they kept marking him.

"That gave me space and obviously it gave me the chance to pull the trigger.

"My shot in the first half, I thought it was creeping in to be fair, when it dipped.

"In the second half, we dominated and we just need to pull the trigger a bit more when we get that half a yard we need to shoot.

"Tuesday is a game where everybody wants to play. Everybody's going to be wanting that shirt so it's up to the gaffer now really what team he picks."

Mal Benning, left-back

"It's another clean sheet so as long as we stay like that [and] nick a goal here and there, we're winning games."

Today was Benning's fourth successive start and he is now hoping to continue his run in the team as focus moves to Tuesday's hotly-anticipated Emirates FA Cup third round replay against Cardiff City.

"It's a frustrating time when you're out the team, you've just got to believe in your ability and stay focussed. I'm just enjoying it; I just want to play football.

"Tuesday is a game where everybody wants to play. Everybody's going to be wanting that shirt so it's up to the gaffer now really what team he picks.

"We know we've got Man City in the next round [if we win] but our focus is Cardiff, they're a hard team. They're sitting near the top of the Championship, and it's going to be a tough game.

"We're confident so we'll see how it goes."

Supporters will be able to login to iFollow Stags later this evening to view Benning's post-match interview in full.


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