CLOUGH AND COUGHLAN REACTION
Boss highlights positives after Newport point
mansfieldtown.net, Tues 25 Oct 2022
Mansfield Town manager Nigel Clough says that he values the point earned tonight ‘an awful lot’ considering his side’s numerical disadvantage for much of the second-half as Stags drew 0-0 at home to Newport County.
Tuesday night’s fixture ended in stalemate after the amber and blue were left to play almost 40 minutes with ten men following the dismissal of James Perch.
And Nigel reiterated that, despite the Exiles’ poor start to the season and league position, they are still a top side,
“We value it [the point] an awful lot, when you’re playing 40 minutes with ten men.
“I think people forget that Newport have been up there for the last three, four, five years and are a strong side.”
Summing up the performance, he said: “We played some good stuff, but then having to play what, 40 minutes with 10 men, to get a clean sheet out of that, and not get back-to-back defeats, is important.
“It keeps the unbeaten run going here at the One Call.”
"We struggled early on, we made a mistake and Christy mad a good save.
"Long throws coming in from not just level with the penalty area, but from 25-30 yards out. I thought we dealt throughout the game with them well.
The boss believes that just prior to the sending off, his side were looking dangerous,
“For the first 10, 15 minutes before the sending off, I thought we were just getting into our rhythm and hitting our stride.
“[We had] Good passing, good movement, getting a couple of chances.
“Then you go down to 10 men, it's a different game.”
Key injuries for Mansfield forced Nigel to rearrange the squad for tonight’s game,
“We didn't have wing-backs tonight, so that's why we started with the back four.
“Kieran Wallace did really well for 45 minutes, he's not played for a long time. 45 minutes was enough for him when he’s been out with a head injury.
“We changed after about half an hour. We thought we'd get Jordan back in his normal wing back role. I thought we looked a bit more comfortable with that.
"And Jordan does an important role for us at set plays.
“I thought the football we played in the first half was good. We were struggling to get through the middle of them but at the start of the second half, I could see it [Stags upping the ante] coming.
"I thought George Maris was excellent and we were 'nearly' a couple of times.
"Ollie Clarke was outstanding when he went back into the three. He's one of the reasons we got the clean sheet.
"Will Swan was shattered after Saturday, as he's had an illness.
“It's sort of patching up here and there as we go. [I] can't wait till we get them all fit.
“It's been like that for a few weeks now, it will be nice to get to the situation when the games calm down a bit in November [and] get everybody back on the pitch.”
The boss says the team have missed Rhys Oates’ prowess and is relishing the chance to get him back playing.
“We haven’t had a settled side due to injuries or whatever,” said the boss.
“We've pencilled him [Rhys] in for four weeks tonight for the Papa John's game.
“If we can get him back on the pitch, that will be a huge boost sooner rather than later.
“He’s our leading goal scorer and he's the biggest threat that we have and when you don't have him nights like tonight or Saturday, sometimes it shows.
“That's why we've done brilliant to be in a position we’re in, we’re fourth in the league still.
“I think we're in a great position considering we've been without him.”
Nigel Clough taking the positives out of Mansfield Town's stalemate with Newport County
Nigel Clough is taking the positives out of Mansfield Town’s frustrating 0-0 draw with Newport County.
Stags were forced to see out the last 36 minutes a man light after James Perch was red-carded for two bookable offences.
It saw Mansfield fighting hard to hold on to a point with a battling display which left the boss pleased.
“We played nearly 40 mins with ten men, which is an awfully long time,” he said.
“We kept our clean sheet and our home run going, which is very important.
“When you're playing for that amount of time against a good side with ten men you fear it is in danger (unbeaten run)
“You don’t want back-to-back defeats in a season and this could be a good point for confidence.
“We had our best spell 10 -15 mins after the break before the red card.
“I thought we were getting into our rhythm and starting to play and then the red card means it’s a different game.
“We played some good stuff without creating too much, but credit to them, they are big, strong, organised and tough to break down.
“We had enough situations and we should have done a bit better with the final ball.
“I didn’t think our set plays were great tonight, which was disappointing.
“But we dug in well and got what could be an important point.”
But Clough was left a touch frustrated following the red card and what he sees as a lack of consistency from the officials.
“I thought the first yellow was a bit soft,” said Clough. “The ref says he's stopping a promising attack.
“Their lad made a similar tackle outside the penalty area the other week on JJ (O’Toole), but it wasn't seen as a promising attacking.
“Outside the area is surely more promising than the halfway line.
“The ref didn't have much option with the second yellow, but I thought there was only one bad tackle in the game and that was in the 95th minute with the challenge on (Kellan) Gordon).
“Graham Coughlan said he thought that it was a red card. It wouldn't have affected the outcome of the game in any way but you are looking for some consistency and a recognition that it was a very poor tackle.”
Graham Coughlan: Newport County deserved point at Mansfield
By Chris Kirwan
NEWPORT County AFC manager Graham Coughlan was happy with a point gained rather than lamenting two lost against 10-man Mansfield in League Two.
The Exiles built on their 1-0 win against Colchester with a 0-0 draw at Field Mill to stay 18th in the table, five points off the relegation zone.
Mansfield are unbeaten in the league on home soil but were left clinging on after James Perch was sent off approaching the hour.
County, who had the better of the chances in the first half, put their hosts under pressure without creating any clear chances.
"It's a tough one, when a team goes down to 10 men you would like to go on and win it,” admitted Coughlan after his second game in charge.
"Even with 11 v 11 I was really pleased with what the lads did and the chances we created in the first 20 minutes when we started fast.
"I am really proud of them and pleased with them. It was a clean sheet and had somebody offered me that at the start of the game I would have taken it, so I guess I have to be pleased.”
County have kept clean sheets in both games under Coughlan, who was only appointed on Thursday, but the new boss would like to be more threatening with the ball.
"I would have liked three points with a man advantage but we probably didn't do enough,” he said.
"We had 11 shots and had three blocked, so I am not sure we asked enough questions or worked their goalkeeper enough.
"We got into the right areas and put balls in but I have to give credit to Mansfield because they put their bodies on the line, blocked, cleared, kicked and tackled.
"We've come a long way and this club has been in some dark places in the last few weeks and months.
"It's nice to have a dressing room with smiles on faces and they feel that their hard work has been rewarded with a couple of clean sheets.
"We would take four points from two games and two clean sheets all day long."
Latest | October 2022