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Mansfield ‘magnificent’ in Gills’ win - skipper

11 February 2023

Goalscoring skipper Ollie Clarke described Mansfield as ‘magnificent’ as Stags beat Gillingham 2-0 at One Call Stadium.

Clarke made his first start of the new year at One Call Stadium after an injury he sustained at The Suit Direct Stadium against Hartlepool United.

The midfielder broke the deadlock on 21 minutes as he drove a left-footed effort into the back of Glenn Morris’ net.

And Mansfield were given the opportunity to double their advantage on 35 minutes when the referee pointed to the spot from which Lucas Akins fired home.

Speaking on his team’s superb performance at home, Ollie said: “The lads were magnificent today, I think it was about doing a professional job.

“Once we got the two goal advantage we knew that things were probably going to change at the start of the second-half and we managed to stick to our jobs and stop them creating many opportunities. 

“I thought Scottie [Flinders] was magnificent again today. The defence was outstanding and credit to everyone really, we dug in really well and reduced them to [creating] very little [chances].

“I think today we did really well at nullifying their strengths.”

Speaking on his left-footed strike, the captain said: “I keep working away at it and it's nice to see it when it goes in. It took a little deflection but at the end of the day it’s about winning games and I’m glad we’ve done that again today.

“It’s not about me individually, it's about the team putting points on the board and effectively getting to where we want to be come the end of the season.”

Referee Thomas Kirk pointed to the spot on 35 minutes following a foul by Gills’ defender Max Ehmer on Stags’ forward Lucas Akins.

Speaking on the penalty decision, Ollie said: “It’s one of those, he’s grabbed his (Lucas Akins) shirt. The referee would probably pull it back anywhere else on the pitch and rightly so he’s given a penalty. I thought we should have probably had one in the second-half for the foul on Davis [Keillor-Dunn]. 

“Davis was eager to get off the mark as you would when you’re at a new club but Lucas [Akins] has taken a few for us and his performances recently have probably warranted him taking it so fair play to him he’s stuck it away [into the back of the net].

“He’s hit it sweet and that’s it at 2-0, we knew the job was almost done and we could get ready for the second-half and prepare for what [attacking threat] they were going to bring.”

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