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‘That’s as good as it gets’ - manager

22 January 2022

Mansfield Town manager Nigel Clough believes this afternoon’s heroic ten-man victory away at Barrow is ‘as good it gets’.

The win equals a club record of seven successive league victories.

 

Speaking to the media following the game, the boss praised the team’s character throughout the triumph in Cumbria. 

 

“[We won under] Unbelievable circumstances. We played nearly an hour with ten men,” the manager said.

 

“[ We showed] Outstanding effort. The closing down, restricting them to chances, to get another goal with ten men [was excellent].

 

“Probably under the circumstances that’s as good as it gets this season.”

 

Despite having a man less, the gaffer stuck to his game plan of pressing the opposition in their own half.

 

“We pressed them high up the pitch which with ten men I don’t think most teams do,” he said. 

 

“When they did come into our penalty area we dealt with it the vast majority of times.

 

“I don’t think Nathan bishop has had too much to do in the second period.

 

“If you do go down to ten men, I think having the lead gives you an added impetus and something really to hold on to.

 

“We felt that at half-time.

 

“That five or ten minutes before half-time we got through and we were fine in the second half.”

 

The manager was impressed with his side’s intensity as the Stags took the lead after just 40 seconds through Rhys Oates.

 

 

“That’s won us the game as much as anything; scoring a goal after 40 odd seconds away from home.

 

“We kick-off, go forward, win a corner and we score from that.

 

“It gives everybody a lift and gives you something to hang on to.”

 

Jordan Bowery impressed in several positions and scored Mansfield’s crucial third goal in front of the Stags’ supporters. 

 

“I think we’ve all had a wonderful day, you saw that at the end [with the squad celebrating with the travelling fans],” the boss said.

 

“To equal the record of seven consecutive wins in the Football League in the way we did today made it extra special. 

 

“Jordan’s got up and put another goal in for us. 

 

“He’s [Bowery] played off the front man, right wing-back and then he’s got the all-important third goal.

 

“He’s had a good day.”

 

The Stags’ chief was left pleased at the team's ability to win in a different manner to the recent performances.

 

“The belief you get from it being a different sort of victory today is quite significant.

 

“To see out 60 minutes with ten men and score a goal [and] get the three points [was excellent].

 

“The season could have swung a little bit today [had the Stags not recorded such an impressive win].

 

“If we’d drawn 2-2 or even lost 3-2 today, which is more than possible, then the momentum could’ve swung today. 

 

“But, we’ve pulled it out the bag and we’ve kept the momentum going.”

 

Recent January acquisition Lucas Akins made his Stags debut off the bench. The boss was impressed by his contribution.

 

“I thought he was brilliant for the 15 minutes he came on,” said the manager.

 

“It was just about being sensible. He held the ball up and looked a threat, everything we’ve seen Lucas do for many years.

 

“It’s brilliant to have him at last, we’ve been trying for about a year.

 

“Clubs don’t want to let good players go and with what he’s done for Burton, he’s been there seven and a half years

 

“Averaging 40 games a season, player of the year, community player of the year - absolutely incredible.

 

“He’s looking forward now to a fresh challenge.”

 


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