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Achieving clean sheet a confidence boost - youth boss

12 November 2018

Academy manager John Dempster says his side achieved their objective on Saturday by recording a clean sheet in their 1-0 win over Huddersfield.

In the midday kick-off at The RH Academy, Jimmy Knowles opened the scoring inside two minutes when he smashed home from close range following a Jamie Chisholm knock-down.

The scoreline did not reflect Stags’ dominance over the course of the 90 minutes, in what was a spirited team performance, that on another day might well have resulted in a greater winning margin.

After the game, youth boss Dempster expressed his delight in getting the clean sheet, and commended his players for their victory over a side looking to get players ready for the Premier League.

“For the goalkeeper and the back four to get a clean sheet it’s very pleasing”, he stated. “As a group it was one of our objectives to get the clean sheet, and it will hopefully give the team confidence throughout.

“I thought that we had enough chances to win the game more comfortably, [however], considering we were against a Premiership outfit – with them trying to get players into the Premier League – we’re pleased with our team performance and the individual performances also.

“Towards the end of the game they started to put some pressure on us, and when there’s only one goal in it, there is always a chance that the other team could get the leveller.

"As a group it was one of our objectives to get the clean sheet, and it will hopefully give the team confidence throughout."

John Dempster, academy manager

“Fortunately, that didn’t happen today, but that is because of the way that we defended, and credit must go to the players for that.

“I thought young Kian Sketchley, our left-back, was probably our player of the match today. Considering that was his first game, I was delighted with him; some of his defending and some of his balls forward were superb.

“Matty [Langton] also did really well today - not only out of possession but also in possession - he got on the ball and he got us ticking.”

With Mansfield scoring three or more goals on seven separate occasions this season, Dempster was disappointed that his side did not find the net more frequently against the Terriers, in a contest where they created the bulk of the chances.

Dempster added: “Tyrese [Sinclair], Jimmy [Knowles] and Riley [O’Sullivan] were all told at half time that we were disappointed with the finishing.

“We have been hard on the defenders of late, with the number of goals we’ve been conceding, so we would expect better at the other end of the field today.

“[We have an] outstanding facility [in The RH Academy], and we always look forward to playing here. It’s important when the boys put on that shirt that they go out and do the club proud, and today they did that.”

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