COX, ROBERTS, GREEN, LIAM DAISH REACTION
NEW: post match interviews with Gary Roberts and Matt Green from Radio Nottingham here.
post match interviews with Paul Cox, Gary Roberts and Matt Green --->
post match interviews with Paul Cox and Liam Diash --->
Ebbsfleet manager Liam Daish told BBC Radio Kent:
"Obviously I'm disappointed because we lost the game but that can happen against a side who are full-time, with better resources and better everything infrastructure wise.
"For the two goals in the first half we defended poorly and didn't play the conditions.
"We weren't on the move, were a little bit static and they had good players who were strong.
"I was pleased with the way the lads reacted in the second half but we gave ourselves too big a mountain to climb."
Mansfield Town manager Paul Cox told BBC Radio Nottingham:
"It might be one of those scenarios where we ban the play-off word because at the minute the lads look as though they're enjoying their football.
"Gary Roberts is just a good footballer, simple as that.
"You can just see he shouldn't really be playing at this level because his ability for a 24-year-old is immense."
twitter.com/LifeofRiley6 Martin Riley
Good week for #stags! Wasnt particular happy with my performance today but we were solid and another clean sheet! Now im gonna get steaming!
Stags' two-goal hero Gary Roberts says: “We are in with a shout of play-offs”
TWO-goal Gary Roberts turned in yet another man of the match display in Stags' 3-0 win at Ebbsfleet United on Saturday.
But his sparkling form has been no surprise to boss Paul Cox who explained: “I said when I brought Gary here that, with all due respect, he shouldn't be playing at this level. The kid is a fantastic footballing talent.
“Sometimes a player just needs a bit of an arm around them and some of the things he did today were immense. The ability he has as a 24-year-old is huge.
“Since he came here he has worked as hard as everyone else in training and the games. He gave himself a target of 10 goals when he came here and looks like he could do it.
“He is bedding into a very good team, It wasn't just about his two goals but also his passing and his creative ability are maybe something we were lacking earlier in the season.”
Roberts said: “It was a must-win game today or the point we got at Luton in midweek would have been a waste of time.
“We went short and long first half and they didn't know whether to stick or twist.
“But credit to Ebbsfleet in the second half they got us on the back foot. Any team 2-0 down is going to put you under a lot of pressure but they didn't really create any clear cut chances. We defended quite well at times, though we can defend better.”
Roberts netted in the first half and, after being unable to come off near the end exhausted after all three subs had been used, he grabbed a late second.
“I am glad the boss kept me on – now I will have to chase him for a goal bonus now,” he said.
“I am getting near my fitness now but there is a lot more to come from me
“We are in with a shout of the play-offs and, if we keep performing like that, we won't be far off.”
Stags boss delighted with mix of steel and flair
MANAGER Paul Cox was delighted with the way Mansfield Town mixed attacking prowess with defensive steel to run out 3-0 winners at Ebbsfleet.
The Stags collected their second consecutive clean sheet at Stonebridge Road following their midweek 0-0 draw at Luton.
But they also looked potent going forward and it was a surprise that it took them until stoppage time to score a killer third goal.
"It was probably one of our best away performances of the season although the scoreline flattered us after the second half when Ebbsfleet threw everything at us," said Cox.
"But I would have taken that before the game and the lads worked extremely hard again to get it.
"That performance showed we have learned from earlier in the season when we got sloppy and gave up our leads.
"We knew we were not going to get another 45 minutes like the first half where we were knocking the ball about.
"Credit to Ebbsfleet because they showed power and pace and put us under pressure, but we defended well.
"It was a good team performance, but we can still learn and get better.
"We are starting to look hard to beat and a major threat when going forward. Gary Roberts and Ben Hutchinson were outstanding for us. Hutcho was unmarkable at times in the first half."
"One or two results went for us as well but there's no use looking at other people, you just have to look after yourself and keep picking up points.
"We can then look at it again with ten games to go. I've said to the lads that if they keep believing and want to get better then who knows what can happen come the end of the season."
Cox says he is 'very close' to wrapping up a striker signing and is bidding to complete the deal today.
Meanwhile striker Matt Green, who battled through a shin injury before taking a rest after 55 minutes, added: "My goal was pretty simple really because it was a great flick by Ross (Dyer) and didn't leave me with too much to do. I took pain killers before the game because it hurts when I put a lot of weight on it, so I'm glad we've got a full week to rest up before the next game.
He added: "I have spoken to the gaffer about it and I think it is a great idea to bring a striker in. As far as I'm concerned, the more players we have got in our armoury the better."
Cox cites home form as key to Stags play-off ambitions
PAUL Cox saw his Mansfield Town side record their first win in ten league outings on the road – then cited the club's home form as the key to their play-off chances.
The Stags were deserved winners at Ebbsfleet to stretch their unbeaten run since the turn of the year to six matches.
Gary Roberts struck his first two goals for the club after Matt Green's 18th of the season had set the visitors on their way to a 3-0 victory.
Mansfield have been picking up some excellent results on the road, none more so than their draw at high-flyers Luton last Wednesday.
But despite having lost only two away games this season, the defeat of the Fleet was their first triumph since September 27, when they won 3-1 at second-placed Wrexham.
Manager Cox hopes that is a sign of things to come, but knows a continuation of the form that has seen them beat Forest Green and Hayes and Yeading in their last two outings at Field Mill is even more important.
"It's strange to think we haven't won away since then considering we have done quite well," said Cox. "I'm really chuffed to get a victory at a tough place like Ebbsfleet, where plenty of teams have come unstuck.
"But it's our home form that is vital. If we can start picking that up it is going to be massive for us.
"If you can win home games and draw away then you are going to get that average of two points per game. That is going to put you not far away."
Goal hero Roberts eyeing double figures
GARY Roberts has his eye on a double-figure goal haul at Mansfield Town before the end of the season.
The talented midfielder joined the Stags at the turn of the year and has played in all six games that the team has remained unbeaten since then.
The former Port Vale man has been an influential figure alongside Adam Murray in the middle of the Mansfield midfield.
But at Ebbsfleet he also found his shooting boots and his brace eased Mansfield to a 3-0 win.
Roberts hopes that double is just the start of his goalscoring exploits for his new club.
"I have come close once or twice, so it was nice to get off the mark and chip in with a couple of goals for the team," he said.
"I'm expected to get eight to ten goals for the club before the end of the season, that was my target, and if I can keep it going then I don't think I will be too far off.
"But the most important thing for us was to get the three points.
"It was a good result to draw at Luton in our previous game, but it would have meant nothing had we come to Ebbsfleet and lost.
"I thought in the first half we were head and shoulders above them. They didn't know whether to stick or twist with us going short and then long with the passing.
"Greeny got the first goal which is him all over.
"Even if he doesn't have the best of games he still gets on the scoresheet.
"For my first goal I just got it out of my feet, hit it and luckily it went in the corner.
"They came out and had a go at us in the second half, but without causing us too many problems."
Latest | January 2012