CLOUGH AND HAYDEN MULLINS REACTION
Boss happy with performance despite late leveller
mansfieldtown.net, Tuesday 17th August 2021
Manager Nigel Clough, although ‘frustrated’ with the manner of this evening’s draw at Colchester, says ‘seven points from nine’ is a positive return for his side to start the season.
Defender Elliott Hewitt headed the Stags towards what looked a third successive win in Sky Bet League Two, but a late penalty, converted by Freddie Sears, ensured the spoils were shared.
The boss says that, despite it being two points ‘dropped,’ he was left pleased by large areas of his side’s performance.
“I thought we were very good at times tonight and controlled the games for long periods. We created numerous opportunities and Nathan Bishop has had very little to do.
“We had several chances to get ahead. That’s the frustrating part, then the penalty tops it off.
“There was some decision-making that was poor in the first-half, but we played some very good stuff.
“I thought we had nine or ten moves tonight which were very good indeed, but didn’t quite finish them off.
“It’s still a point, but it’s in the last minute and everyone’s a little bit down. We were on top and should’ve won, but seven points from nine with an away point is never bad.
“Ultimately it is two [points] dropped because of the manner in which we played, the chances we created and conceding with seconds to go.
“I hope they [travelling fans] enjoyed the way we played, because we said we’re trying to play the same away as we do at home. We probably created more tonight than we have done in the two home games.
“There was some lovely football at times, but we have to get better at certain things. [But] for the third game in, it’s very encouraging.”
When asked about referee Sam Allison’s decision to award Colchester a penalty in stoppage time, the boss said: “I thought it was a very poor decision [to give the penalty]. Very rarely do you see a penalty decision given when the person who goes down doesn’t even appeal.
“The referee has two bodies in front of him and I’m not sure how he can give it.
“We should’ve been out of sight. Macca [Stephen McLaughlin] has got slightly wrong-side, the lad goes down, doesn’t appeal for the penalty and gets up to play the ball.
“The referee from 20 or 25 yards away gives the penalty. It’s quite an astonishing decision, really.”
Nigel Clough made two changes for this evening’s game, with Kellan Gordon and Oli Hawkins making way for Hewitt and George Lapslie.
“We were a little worried about the height [difference] tonight, with Oli Hawkins not able to start, as they are very strong at set plays.
“He [Hawkins] was a bit under the weather and tired after Saturday. He wasn’t ready to start.
“Height [was the reason Hewitt started over Kellan Gordon], because of their presence in our penalty area.”
The manager's interview will be available to watch in full for iFollow Stags subscribers at mansfieldtown.net/ifollow tomorrow.
Mansfield Town boss Nigel Clough furious over late Colchester United penalty that denied them win
chad.co.uk, By John Lomas, Tuesday 17th August 2021
Mansfield Town manager Nigel Clough tonight slammed referee Sam Allison's late penalty decision that saw Stags pegged back to a 1-1 draw at Colchester United in a game they dominated and should have won.
Frank Nouble went down under the challenge of Stephen McLaughlin and Clough said: “I thought it was a very, very poor decision.
“Very rarely do you see a penalty given when the person who has gone down doesn't even appeal.
“He was getting up to play the next ball, and the one next to him was as well.
“When the referee has got two bodies in front of him I am not sure how he can give it from 20-25 yards. It was an astonishing decision really.
“We should have been out of sight. But when you have only got a minute and a half to go and the ball is slung in your box you have to get our and get a bit more pressure on the ball.
“But nobody is making him do anything rash. Macca has gone for the header. He was slightly wrong side, but the lad has just gone down and does not appeal for a penalty.”
On the game overall, he said.“I thought we were very good at times tonight. I thought we controlled the game for long periods and created numerous opportunities.
“Nathan Bishop has had little to do and we have several chances to put the game to bed. That's the frustrating part. The penalty on top just caps it off.
“Sometimes you'll see it through at 1-0. But we didn't do anything wrong.”
He added: “It is still a good point for us. It was the last minute and everyone is a little bit down when we've been on top and should have won.
“But it's seven points out of a nine and an away point - that's never bad. “But we should have won it and it is two dropped with chances created and the late penalty.
“We probably created more tonight than we have in the two home games and played some lovely football tonight. Third game in that was very encouraging.”
Colchester United boss Hayden Mullins on draw
By Jonathan Waldron
COLCHESTER United boss Hayden Mullins praised the character of his side after they battled back to claim a point against Mansfield Town.
The U’s looked like they were heading for a second successive 1-0 home defeat at the JobServe Community Stadium, after their former loanee Elliott Hewitt had headed the Stags into a 73rd-minute lead.
But Freddie Sears converted a last-gasp penalty deep into stoppage-time to rescue a point for the hosts, after Frank Nouble had been adjudged to have been fouled in the box.
Mullins said: “That feels like a victory in the end.
“When you snatch a draw like that right at the end, it lifts the players in a strange way.
“The dressing room is a bit more bubbly, because we knew that if we’d lost again today, it would be tough work for us.
“Mansfield started well; we made a few changes to our shape and that settled us down a little bit.
“It was a tough start - we lost (Tom) Eastman and Ryan (Clampin) to injury but Charlie Daniels came on and settled us down.
“He’s got real quality on the ball and he helped us get a grip in the second half.
“Mansfield are a good side, the way they play their system and really attacking in what they do, so it was a tough game.
“For their goal, we should have stopped the cross and that was the disappointing thing.
“Our right-back got caught up the pitch and they countered on us.
“They’re a good side; they’ve got good forward players and we end up with Luke Hannant back post trying to defend against Elliott Hewitt who’s centre-half size.
“But the character and the fight that we showed to get back into the game was very pleasing.
“I said to the boys we always need a bit of a punch or a slap to wake up and that’s the way we need to start the game.”
Mansfield were upset with referee Sam Allison’s decision to award a penalty in the fifth minute of stoppage time but Mullins was philosophical.
He said: “Most of the game, Frank has defenders climbing all over him and he never gets his fair share of free-kicks in play, I don’t think.
“He stays on his feet so that one where he goes down in the box looked like there was a defender on his back - we appealed and it either goes for you or it doesn’t in those situations and thankfully, it went for us.
“We knew Fred was on penalties and credit to him.
“It took a long time for the kick to be taken and there were bodies around him trying to put him off.
“There was a lot going on - I see young Sylvester (Jasper) wanted to take it off him but he wouldn’t let that happen!
“He kept his nerve and he got the goal he deserved.”
Colchester goalkeeper Shamal George performed superbly again, making a number of saves to keep his side in the game.
Mullins added: “Sham (George) is earning his money!
“But he’s a good young goalkeeper and he needs to keep it going and he needs to be consistent and working at his game.”
Latest | August 2021