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Interviews

Striker 'buzzing' after making first start

9 October 2018

Striker Jordan Graham shared his personal delight after making his first full start for Mansfield Town following the 2-1 victory over Wolves U21s.

The Stags secured their place in the next round of the Checkatrade Trophy as Jacob Mellis and Mal Benning were on target for the home side.

Pedro Goncalves pulled a consolation goal back for the young Wolves side but it was never enough to trouble Mansfield as they made it six points from six in Group H.

Graham led the line on the night, and despite not netting a goal during his hour-long stint, he was still pleased to have attained minutes under his belt for the first team.

“Obviously I would’ve liked to score but it was good to get minutes in the first time and it was my full debut, so I’m buzzing,” he began.

“It felt great [to be playing in the senior side]. I did get a bit tired before being taken off as I haven’t played as many minutes as certain people but it was still good.

"Obviously I would’ve liked to score but it was good to get minutes in the first time and it was my full debut, so I’m buzzing."

Jordan Graham, striker

“I was alright in the first half and then, in the second half, they had more possession so it became a harder game. Overall though I think I did okay.”

After making the jump to the first team last season, the striker noted how much of a difference there was between youth football and tonight’s outing.

“The players were of a much better standard, especially their two midfielders who I thought were outstanding on the ball. The defenders were very strong so it was hard against them,” he admitted.

“The tempo of the game is so much better than playing under-21 football and that’s what I want to be involved in every day.

“I’d like to play at least 10 games this season in the first team – whether that’s starting or coming off the bench.”

Graham has also made a couple of first-team appearances from the bench, and he believes he has integrated into the set-up nicely courtesy of help from staff and players around him.

“A lot of the senior players are very helpful – they guide you through certain things, even during training, they’re all just very supportive so that’s good.

“He [David Flitcroft] has been very supportive. He brought me in a couple of times at the end of last season and then this season I’ve been constantly with the first team,” the 20-year-old said.

“There are a lot of senior players helping me as well as a few other young players, so it’s been comfortable for me to fit in nicely.”

iFollow Stags subscribers can watch Jordan Graham's interview in full by logging into mansfieldtown.net/ifollow later today.


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