Manager Nigel Clough delivered an honest post-match assessment following Friday’s 2-0 defeat at home to Leyton Orient.
Two goals from Danny Johnson decided the tie, with both strikes stemming from Mansfield errors.
The boss spoke at length of the errors committed by his side today, declaring that there are ‘no excuses’ for this afternoon’s mistakes.
“We’ve given some goals away and games away in the last few months but that’s right up there with them,” he told iFollow Stags. “They are two errors of schoolboy proportions that have cost us the game.
“It’s very difficult [to legislate for the errors]. It’s something that we talk about regularly – don’t go back to the goalkeeper unless you really have to.
“There are no excuses whatsoever today for the mistakes that cost us the goals.
“We started the game brilliantly and we were knocking it about, then the encouragement that the goal gave them was there for everyone to see.
“Once we’d given that goal away, it put them ready to press and pounce on any mistakes.
“We’ve had it [mistakes] away from home mainly and have not made too many mistakes here [One Call Stadium], but we’ve made two catastrophic ones today.”
Nigel Clough saw an improved Mansfield outfit in the second-half, but explained that ‘chasing’ a match is always more difficult.
“[We asked the players at the break] to be better,” he said. “We wanted them to be better on the ball.
“I thought we had enough situations in the second-half and were not too bad. We got into some good crossing positions but hit the first man too many times.”
“That [quality in final third] has been a problem, but if it is lacking, you get the 0-0.
“But when you’re chasing the game, we find it difficult chasing down when we go two behind.
“To give two goals away in the manner that we did, and in the positions we were in as well, I’m at a loss really.”
The manager made five changes in the second-half in an attempt to salvage a result. He added: “Anything to try and shake it up a little bit. We wanted some fresh legs on to try and get back into the game.
“But also to maybe save a couple [of players] for Monday [against Exeter City].”
iFollow Stags subscribers can watch the manager’s interview in full by logging into mansfieldtown.net/ifollow.