SHIRTLIFF AND SMITH REACTION
Audio interview with Peter Shirtliff from Mansfield 103.2 (file is 1.3 Mb).
Just not our day, says Shirtliff
PETER Shirtliff elected not to slam his players for their 4-1 defeat at Wrexham last night after a good performance was marred only by 12 minutes of madness in which they conceded three goals and the points.
"I told the players it just wasn't our night, which was underlined when we hit the bar in the last minute," said the Stags boss.
"We had numerous chances but we let four goals in. It is a recipe for disaster if you are letting them in at one end and not scoring them at the other end.
"We were poor defensively in the second half and our finishing was not clinical enough.
"Their first was a free header from a corner and the second and third were just nonsense goals. They had so much time in there it was unbelievable.
"In the first half Wrexham had not caused us too many problems apart from at set plays. I told the players at half time they needed to concentrate hard at set plays.
"Yet the first corner they got after the break, which was a cheap corner to give away, we gave them a free header. Things like that lose you games.
"Our consistency is poor. We either concede none or three or four, never one or two - it's ridiculous."
An assessment on an injury to midfielder Stephen Dawson will be made today. He took a first half knock and battled on but was eventually withdrawn as Shirtliff was concerned about his mobility.
Stags now face a crucial six-pointer at fellow strugglers Rushden and Diamonds on Saturday and Shirtliff added; "We are going to have to bounce back at Rushden.
"It's no good feeling sorry for ourselves. Any other night we could have won by three or four.
"It wasn't our day and we have got to make Rushden our day on Saturday."
Denis: Not The Best Of 4-1 Wins!
Despite a comprehensive victory Wrexham manager Denis Smith was still disappointed by the manner of his team's success
"The first half was as bad as any during my four years at the club," he said. "Credit though to my team for the way they recovered in the second-half, but I was glad to come in at just one down after 45 minutes. We were much livelier after half-time and scored some good goals.
"The two strikers always looked dangerous and Michael Ingham gave a good performance at the other end.
"We know that we have to work on the bit in between.
"If you can win 4-1 and not play well then I will take it but we know this won't happen every week.
"The finishing though was quality. We work on things in training and it's nice when they actually work in match situations.
"We scored some good goals tonight and Mark Jones' will be replayed a number of times. He has all the ability in the world but sometimes disappears. Although when he turns up he is liable to produce something special.
"Danny Williams has not had the best of games but he has produced a goal. I have been happy with his displays throughout the season, even if he will have gone home tonight knowing that he didn't play his best.
Mansfield boss Peter Shirtliff rued his team's missed chances
"We were not clinical in our finishing at one end and leaked goals at the other, which is a recipe for disaster.
"At half-time I was quietly confident as Wrexham had not caused us problems, except at set-pieces.
"We have had numerous chances, hit the bar, but still conceded goals, not one or two but three or four which is ridiculous.
"Back in the dressing room, I told my players that it was just not to be our night. We battled hard but just couldn't get the ball in the back of the net.
"I feel that we did enough to have got something from this game, but things like the first fifteen minutes of the second-half have cost us dear".
Latest | December 2005