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Interviews

Win would serve ‘massive’ confidence boost - midfielder

15 October 2020

Midfielder James Perch believes that Stags’ performances have warranted more points this season, and that a victory against Bradford City on Saturday would provide a ‘massive confidence boost.’

The 35-year-old has made four outings for the amber and blue this term after joining the club in the summer.

Perch says that the group, as ever, will be ‘determined’ to achieve victory against the Bantams on Saturday.

“We just need to get that win and that little bit of extra confidence,” he told iFollow Stags. “It would be massive as confidence is key when you’re young – for the young boys, it would be a massive confidence boost.

“The focus for this group is getting that win. I’ve been at clubs before where the focus is ‘don’t lose’ going into the next game.

“Whereas this group, the gaffer [Graham Coughlan] has drilled into us to go and win, which is a different mentality.

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“If you got back to the Newport game, I thought we were bang at it and deserved to win that game.

“On Saturday [against Stevenage], they banked up against us and made it really hard for us to play. We hit the bar and we hit the post, so we maybe should have got the three points as well.

“This team has been determined from the start, it’s just a shame that we haven’t got them [wins] yet.”

Looking back on his first months at the club, the midfielder spoke of his position in the team and how the Stags can improve.

“My start here has been okay generally speaking – it would have been a lot better had we got a couple of wins,” he added. “But after not playing for six months, I think it’s been okay.

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“I like it [in defensive midfield] as I’m a natural defender – that’s how I trained as a kid. It all come second nature to me and I enjoy that side of the game.

“The games have been okay to play in, I think we should’ve come away from them with a few more points than we’ve got at the minute.

“A couple of decisions and a bit of luck has gone against us, but I think the performances have been okay.

“We’ve let ourselves down in a couple of games as I think the strikers have been feeding on scraps at times. That comes down to us as players to try and provide the bullets for them.

“There is a lot more [to come]. If you’ve watched the games, I’m sure you’ve seen bits and bobs and flashes of brilliance at times.

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“But we need to put that together consistently and perform over 90 minutes. I’m really confident in saying that if we do that, we’ll come away with the three points more often than not.”

Taking charge of Bradford City on Saturday will be Stuart McCall, a manager Perch worked under at Scunthorpe in 2018/19.

The former Newcastle United man says that playing against a former manager can serve as an advantage.

“I worked with him [Stuart McCall] at Scunthorpe and he’s a good manager. Bradford will be organised [on Saturday] and they’ll be up for it. It’s going to be a tough game.

“Bradford will be physical. When I played under him, we played a diamond in midfield – he likes having a lot of legs in there to get up and down the pitch.

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“They’ll be expansive and they’ll be looking to come here and score goals.

“I know how he [Stuart McCall] likes [his teams] to play and I know where he likes the ball to go. That can help me, definitely.”

iFollow Stags subscribers can watch James’ interview in full on mansfieldtown.net/ifollow later today.

Match passes are available for Saturday’s fixture against Bradford for just £10. To get yours, click here.


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