Flying wingman CJ Hamilton says that the ‘big achievement’ of reaching ten goals for the first time in a single campaign follows ‘a lot of work’ with manager David Flitcroft and assistant manager Ben Futcher.
The 23-year-old fired home two strikes in quick succession in the Stags’ recent 4-2 victory over Cheltenham Town, taking his goal tally into double figures for the season.
Hamilton reflected on what he believes is his ‘best’ season so far in professional football.
“It’s the first time I’ve hit that many goals [ten] in a season. It’s a big achievement for me in my career,” he said.
“Hopefully I can go on and make it 15, because that’s now my target.
“This season I’ve been working a lot with the gaffer [David Flitcroft] and Futch [assistant manager Ben Futcher] on my finishing and end product, and you can see that it’s paying off.
“It’s probably my best [season] in professional football.
“It [scoring] gives me a massive lift. Going a few games without scoring makes you wonder when your next goal is going to come. To get two [against Cheltenham] was very good for me.
“The second goal, I thought if I get across the defender and pull it back across goal, it has a good chance of going in.”
"This season I’ve been working a lot with the gaffer [David Flitcroft] and Futch [assistant manager Ben Futcher] on my finishing and end product, and you can see that it’s paying off."
Hamilton, who has been utilised in a number of positions so far this season, says that the Stags are working a ‘lot harder’ in comparison to recent campaigns, and that Mansfield are preparing well for Saturday’s game away to Port Vale.
“It [preparation] has been good,” he added. “We’ve been training hard again and we’re obviously looking to get another three points.
“I think everyone has come into training [with a bounce]. We’ve had two victories and now we’re looking for a third [in a row].
“I think we’re working a lot harder [in comparison to recent seasons]. It all started in pre-season when we set a base and stuck with it, and we all followed what the manager thought was the best to do.
“We just need to keep working hard and putting our bodies on the line, and do everything we can to keep picking up those three points.
“Every weekend is different for me – I can be at wing-back, up front, on the wing, anywhere! But I’m happy to be in the team in any way possible.”
The No.22 believes that Saturday’s trip to Vale Park will be a challenge for the Stags, against a side who he believes will put ‘everything on the line.’
He also spoke of the ‘phenomenal’ Mansfield supporters, who are expected to turn up in big numbers for the weekend’s Sky Bet League Two encounter.
“We’ve always been strong against the teams at the top of the table. They [Port Vale] are obviously fighting for survival and will be putting everything on the line.
“They’re fighting [to stay in the league] as much as we are to get out of the league, so it will be a good test on Saturday.
“It’s about picking up the three points away and that’s the aim now, to see if we can go there and kick on.
“The fans since I’ve been here have been phenomenal. Every year, they’ve always backed us wherever we go, and I can’t thank them enough.
“We want to put it [Notts County result] right, because the fans that travelled down that day were left disappointed. The boys weren’t really at it on the day, but this weekend, I’m sure we will be.”
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