COUGHLAN, HAMILTON, JOHN ASKEY REACTION
Fans were ‘magnificent’ again - boss
mansfieldtown.net, Thursday 26 December 2019
Manager Graham Coughlan has called on the Mansfield players to ‘reward’ the fans for their ‘magnificent support’ following this afternoon’s 2-2 draw with Port Vale at One Call Stadium.
In the new boss’ second game in charge, late goals from Nicky Maynard and CJ Hamilton secured a point after Port Vale defenders Nathan Smith and Leon Legge put the visitors two to the good.
The manager offered his thoughts on his side’s performance, while once again praising the One Call Stadium faithful.
“I’m probably going to sound like a broken record but that’s another game we should’ve won,” he told iFollow Stags. “We don’t look like we had composure in front of goal, which is obviously self-belief and confidence.
“I was a bit disappointed that we didn’t win the game if I’m being honest. That’s another game, at home, that we should’ve won.
“The goals we conceded were poor. It’s frustrating and it’s annoying, but we will get there. We’ve not had much chance to work hard - my ‘working hard’ and the players’ ‘working hard’ are two different things.
“We’ll get to my way of thinking - but the lads have given their all again. On another day they might not have come back.
“Yet again the fans have got us back into a game. Yet again the fans have got us over the line. They’re doing their bit - I’m asking the players now, let’s step up to the plate and start to reward the fans who have been magnificent in the last two games.
“Yes, they weren’t the best conditions [to play in], but it’s a game we should’ve won and a game we should’ve defended their two balls into the box better.”
Graham Coughlan says that there is a ‘lack of confidence’ in the Mansfield squad, which explains the missed chances this afternoon.
“There is a lack of confidence and lack of self-belief, that’s possibly why we’re missing chances and vulnerable at the back.
“That [comeback] will give them confidence. They’re creating chances, which breeds confidence - and we’re confident that we can get there and we can take them eventually.
“They’re good players who don’t deserve to be where they are in the division. It’s a new chapter and one thing for sure is that we’re getting honesty, hard work, graft and commitment from the players.
“There are a few little bits and pieces that I’m confident on and some bits and pieces that I’m pleased with.”
The boss was, however, delighted with the ‘character’ his side showed to stage a dramatic late fightback.
“In the previous group of boys that I managed, I had every hope and every faith that they would come back.
“I love that - rolling their sleeves up and fighting back in the game. Now they’ve shown me character and what they’re made of - that they can come back in the face of adversity.
“That’s a massive positive and a massive plus. But my message to the boys would be: don’t be going two-nil down too often, because teams don’t let you back in.
“Today is two points dropped. We showed a lot of qualities that I liked, but we showed vulnerabilities that I disliked.
“But to get back in the game, all credit to the fans. They dragged them over the line again. Now my message to the dressing room is, ‘you start giving the fans something to cheer about.’ The only way you can do that is by winning football matches.”
Looking ahead to the busy upcoming schedule for the Stags, starting with Sunday’s game away at Bradford in Sky Bet League Two, the manager added: “It [schedule] is busy, hectic, chaotic - game after game, training session after training session. I can’t wait to settle down and go Saturday-Saturday, because we can get some real quality work into the players and start getting our ideas across.
“There are far more positives that I’ve seen over the last two games and five or six training sessions than I thought when I came in.
“We’ll be okay. But I want to win football matches - I’m not here to draw games. I’m not here to be hanging around 18th in the table - and I’m sure the players will echo that sentiment.
“They’re a good group of lads - there’s some quality in there, but it’s just that confidence and belief that they’re lacking.”
iFollow Stags subscribers can watch the manager’s interview in full by logging into mansfieldtown.net/ifollow later today.
Fightback against Port Vale could help restore missing confidence believes Mansfield Town boss Graham Coughlan
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Thursday 26 December 2019
New Mansfield Town boss Graham Coughlan believes today's brave late fightback in the 2-2 home draw with Port Vale will help restore his players' missing confidence.
Although without a win in his two games so far, Coughlan was delighted to see his new charges knuckle down and come back from 2-0 down with nine minutes to go to level through Nicky Maynard and CJ Hamilton.
He said: “We don't look as if we have composure in front of goal and that's obviously down to self-belief and confidence, as is our vulnerability at the back.
“Hopefully today will give them confidence. They are creating chances.
“One thing is for sure - we are getting honesty, we're getting hard work, we're getting graft, we're getting commitment from the players - and that's a start.
“I am probably going to sound like a broken record, but that's another game at home we should have won. It was two points dropped.
“We showed a lot of qualities that I like plus some vulnerabilities I dislike.
“I loved the character, I loved them rolling their sleeves up and fighting back into the game. Now they have shown me character and what they are made of, that they can come back in the face of adversity. That's a massive positive.”
Danny Rose missed two sitters as Stags failed to take their earlier chances and Coughlan admitted: “We had opportunities. They only had one chance in the first half - a free header which is concerning. Otherwise the first half belonged to us.
“The goals we conceded were poor. It's frustrating and annoying. But we will get there.
“But we've not had much chance to work hard really. My working hard and the players' working hard are two different things.
“We have game after game and I can't wait to settle down and go Saturday to Saturday so we can get some work into the players and get our ideas and philosophies across.
“But the lads have given their all again. On another day they might not have come back.”
Once again a big home crowd played their part with some terrific backing and Coughlan added: “Yet again the fans have got us back into a game and yet again the fans have got us over the line.
“They are doing their bit and I am now asking the players to step up to the plate and reward the fans as the fans have been magnificent in the last two games.”
Stags now head for Bradford City on Sunday (3pm).
Goalscorer says he is recapturing last season's form
mansfieldtown.net, Thursday 26 December 2019
Winger CJ Hamilton believes he is slowly recapturing last season’s form after netting an injury-time equaliser for Mansfield Town against Port Vale on Boxing Day.
The Stags faced a two-goal deficit heading into the latter stages of Thursday afternoon’s contest, following goals from the centre-half pairing of Nathan Smith and Leon Legge.
However, substitute Nicky Maynard reduced the arrears on 81 minutes before Hamilton sent the home faithful into raptures with one minute remaining.
And the wideman hopes to build upon his first goal in Sky Bet League Two this season as the fixtures continue to come thick and fast.
“I think I’m slowly finding the form I had last season but it’s a long way from getting there - but I do think I’ll get there,” he told iFollow Stags.
“That’s always the hardest one to get, the first one, so hopefully now they keep on coming.
“It’s always a confidence booster when a manager comes in and tells you that you’re more than capable of doing things in this league, and that’s what he has done.
“Hopefully that means I can repay him on the pitch.”
The 24-year-old hopes the comeback will provide a confidence boost heading forward.
“I think it [the equaliser] will [boost confidence] because we have to think we could have conceded a third but today we brought it back.
“Now it’s time to put teams to the sword and actually finish our chances to win games.
“I think the belief is in the squad, even after going 2-0 down, but the crowd helped us. After the first goal [Maynard’s] they were good for us and helped us get it over the line.
“That first goal always sparks a comeback but I think the boys were just determined to keep getting chances and put it in the back of the net.”
However, the former Sheffield United man held a slight sense of disappointment after the amber and blue could perhaps have taken all three points.
“It’s always good to get your first goal of the season but I’m still disappointed with result,” Hamilton continued.
“I felt as though we should have done more to grab all three points today.
“As a team, we could have stopped their goals. They’re stoppable goals and we could have done more with chances by finishing them off.
“Everyone in the changing room is disappointed because we think we could have beaten them today, so that was obviously a downer but to come back from two-nil down is always great.”
iFollow Stags subscribers can watch CJ's interview in full by logging into mansfieldtown.net/ifollow later today.
CJ Hamilton happy to be off the mark as he looks to repay new Mansfield Town boss Graham Coughlan's faith in him
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Thursday 26 December 2019
CJ Hamilton's first League Two goal of the season deep into stoppage time earned Mansfield Town an unlikely 2-2 home draw with Port Vale today.
Now the winger wants to repay the faith shown in him by new boss Graham Coughlan and regain the form of last season that had Championship clubs chasing his signature.
“I was glad to get my first of the season but disappointed with the result today as I thought we could have grabbed all three points,” he said.
“As a team we could have stopped their goals, both were more than stoppable, and we should have finished off more of our chances.
“But the belief was there still at 2-0 down and the crowd helped us, especially after our first goal.
“A couple of months ago if we were 2-0 down here we'd have probably conceded a third but today we fought back from a point.
“That's a step in the right direction and now we need to put teams to the sword, finish our chances and go on and win games.”
On new boss Coughlan, he added: “The new manager has done a lot since he come in, putting his own methods about, and we are fighting to the last minute.
“It's always a confidence-booster when a new manager comes in and tells you you are more than capable of doing stuff in this league - and that's what he's done. Hopefully I can repay him on the pitch.
“I think I am slowly finding the form I had last season but it's a long way from getting there, though I think I will get there.
“That first league goal of the season is always the hardest one to get. Hopefully now they will keep coming.”
Mansfield Town are now without a win in eight games or a home league win in five games and continue their busy festive programme on Sunday with an away trip at fifth-placed Bradford City, who drew 0-0 at Carlisle United today.
Frustrated John Askey remains encouraged despite Mansfield draw
John Askey was left irritated by yesterday’s result, as his side saw a 2-0 lead slip in the final 10 minutes against Mansfield Town, but believes there were positives to take from the performance.
An equaliser in added time saw the Vale held to just a point at the One Call Stadium and the gaffer admitted his team need to make sure they see out games for all three points going forward.
The boss expressed how well he thought his players had performed throughout the game, with the first goal a highlight of the match, showcasing the brand of football he has been looking to employ.
Nathan Smith started the attack, which saw the Valiants break in numbers on the counter, with Will Atkinson and Scott Burgess spreading the play to David Amoo who crossed the ball for Smith to finish off the move with a goal.
The goal was Smith’s fourth of the season and Amoo’s second assist in as many games, displaying the continued form of the winger and how Vale are capable of getting goals from all over the pitch.
He said: “It’s a sickener, we played really well, thought first-half was pretty even, although David [Amoo] had a great chance to score, but when you’re two up with 10 minutes to go you’ve got to see games out.
“We’re playing well, if we had seen games out we’d be nearly top of the table, maybe other teams are saying that as well, but the main thing is we are scoring goals, we are getting in front, we’ve got to find a way now of making sure we finish games off.
“Yeah [we’re getting goals from defence, midfield and attack] and we’re starting to score from free-kicks as well, and off set-plays, which is important because at the end of the season they make a big difference.
“What we’re trying to do is have plenty of movement in the team and then because of that you end up with Nathan getting on the end of things and another midfield player scoring so although we’ve only got one centre forward, it doesn’t mean we aren’t attacking, we are an attacking team.”
The second goal of the game came from a set-piece, with Leon Legge getting the final touch in goal-mouth scramble following David Worrall’s corner.
However, the gaffer was annoyed to not have two goals from set-plays yesterday, as the ball was headed in to make it 3-0 to the Vale with just over 10 minutes to play, only for it to be ruled out much to Askey’s confusion.
One thing that was clear to the boss though was how well Will Atkinson and Scott Burgess played in the midfield, with Askey praising the pair’s performance.
The next chance for the Vale to get three points is this Sunday when top of the league Swindon Town travel to Vale Park, but the gaffer is confident his side will step up to the challenge having picked up 15 points from a possible 24 against the teams above them in the table so far.
He said: “It’s not an excuse, it [disallowed goal] should be a goal, simple as that, and then as we all know, goals change games, even though we were two up, that third seals it with 10 minutes to go.
“I thought Will [Atkinson] did really well, because he’s not played for a few weeks and that’s the first time he’s played in his proper position, I thought he did really well and Scott [Burgess] was where he needed to be, competed really well and caused them problems.
“All of the other teams [above us] that we’ve played, it’s brought out the best in us, so hopefully that’ll be the case on Sunday, it’ll be a tough game… it’ll be a good test for us and hopefully we can get a result as we’ve done against the other top teams.”
Port Vale boss John Askey disappointed to drop two points as Mansfield Town stage late fightback
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Thursday 26 December 2019
Port Vale manager John Askey was disappointed to see his side let two points slip away late on as Mansfield Town fought back for a 2-2 draw at the One Call Stadium this afternoon.
Vale were sitting pretty at 2-0 up with nine minutes to go before Nicky Maynard and CJ Hamilton earned Stags an unlikely point.
“It's really disappointing,” said Askey.
“We played some really good football and created quite a few chances.
“To be 2-0 up with 10 minutes to go, you should see the game out. But we made a mistake for their first goal which changes everything.
“Even at 2-1 you still think you should see it out.”
He added: “The most pleasing thing was the way we played as we played some really good football.
“If we keep playing like that and working as hard as that we should start to win.”
Latest | December 2019