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Stags set for home double header

15 August 2022

Mansfield Town manager Nigel Clough says he is looking forward to a home double header as Stags aim to add to the club’s points tally.

Mansfield have lost only once at One Call Stadium in the league since October 2021 and will look to continue that run against AFC Wimbledon tomorrow night followed by the visit of Stockport County on Saturday.

Speaking at a news conference today ahead of the two encounters, Nigel said: “I think it’s just the Sutton defeat around easter time [that the Stags lost at home in the league].

“Apart from that we’ve been excellent at home.

“We deserved to beat Derby in the cup as well [last Tuesday].

“If teams are coming to the One Call expecting to be on the back foot, let’s make sure we don’t disappoint them.

“Any game is [a chance to get three points on the board].”

Nigel’s side dominated proceedings against Leyton Orient on Saturday but were narrowly beaten 1-0 in East London.

“[It was] Frustrating more than anything else,” he said, when asked for his final reflections on the game.

“[I] Wasn’t disappointed with the performance at all. 

“We created more than enough chances.

“[I’m] Disappointed with the goal we conceded but there were one or two chances that they had in the game.

“We’re being punished disproportionality for the chances we’re giving up at the moment.

“We’re certainly not putting our chances away.

“[We’ve had] 62 shots in the first four games of the season and only two goals. That will change when one or two strikers start hitting form.”

The Stags’ chief went on to comment on his side’s injury list.

“Akins will not make it I think, too much of a risk.

“The others are very short term.

“Hawks’ [injury] is very similar to what he had a couple of weeks ago.

“We brought him off in the Tranmere win because he felt his hamstring.

“We should have everybody back for Stockport or just beyond.

“This is early season.

“The weather means they’re [the squad] working a lot harder than you would normally when you’re working in 33, 34 degrees heat.

“What you don’t want is them [little injuries] developing into a four-to-six-week injury.

“That’s what we can’t afford.

“At this stage of the season, we’re taking a very cautious approach with them.

“It’s good having Kieran Wallace and James Perch back available again.

“They’ve done very little training but at least they’re available.”

After scoring twice in four games so far this season, Nigel says the responsibility for goals shouldn’t lie entirely on his forwards.

“Everybody has to share that responsibility,” said the boss.

“We’ve always done that [and] shared the goals around.

“Midfielders need to chip in and that’s the way you build the goal tally up.”

When asked about tomorrow night’s opponents, Nigel said: “[They’re] Very experienced and a threat.

“The two lads upfront are a threat.

“Jonnie Jackson is putting together a good, solid team that can challenge for promotion.”

The gaffer ended his news conference with an update on any potential incomings in the coming weeks.

“We’ve made one or two enquiries, but we said we wanted to work with a squad of 19 and that’s the number we’ve got at the moment.

“If somebody is out longer term, then we’ll have a conversation about that but at the moment, no plans.”

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