SHIRTLIFF AND BARKER AND ALLEN REACTION
Audio interview with Peter Shirtliff from Radio Nottingham (file is 1.1 Mb).
Audio interview with Richard Barker from Radio Nottingham (file is 0.5 Mb).
(Barker confirms contract extension is for an extra 2 years; ie. 3 years in total)
Confusion over Dawson's yellow card double
CONFUSION surrounded the two yellow cards which appeared to be shown to Mansfield Town's Stephen Dawson before he was substituted instead of being sent off in the home 2-1 win over Milton Keynes Dons last night.
Dawson was first booked just before the break for a foul and then appeared to be shown a second a minute from time after lengthy protests over referee Kevin Wright's decision not to award him a penalty.
But Dawson was not automatically red-carded and was substituted a minute later.
However, both managers said they were were unaware he had been carded twice.
"I did not see Stephen Dawson get a second yellow card so it baffles me if he did," said Mansfield manager Peter Shirtliff.
"But we are still unbeaten through pre-season and into our first two games. If we keep producing good performances and scoring goals like we are then you never know what could happen.
"We have a confidence right now and they are an honest bunch of lads that are a pleasure to work with."
Dons boss Martin Allen added that he also didn't see the second yellow card for Dawson and said: "If that is the case then that's not good but we still had the players capable of winning the game.
"We started very brightly, looked very sharp and were comfortable at 1-0. But two sloppy goals cost us dear - basic schoolboy defending errors which we must learn to eradicate.
"Moments of madness cost us after we had dominated the game and possession. Their goals came out of the blue - just simple straight balls which we didn't deal with.
"We tried everything in the second half, lots of different formations but we couldn't unlock the door.
"They defended very well and very deep, but that is something we must get used to in this division. We should be able to win at places like Mansfield.
"It is a big game when we come into town, but that is also something we have got to get used to."
Stags came from behind to win the match against the newly-relegated Dons with two goals in eight minutes from Richie Barker and Michael Boulding and Shirtliff added: "I was delighted with the result. I thought our players were excellent throughout the 90 minutes.
"We started slowly which was disappointing and, funnily, I thought their goal kick-started us and we got our tempo up and started to cause them problems.
"Milton Keynes have some big lads and I thought our back four and keeper did excellent. We have worked on our defending on the training ground this week and it paid off.
"We did have opportunities for a third goal. Simon Brown was clear on goal after timing his run perfectly but was given offside, And we also had a good penalty shout turned down."
"TWO MOMENTS OF MADNESS COST US"
Following the Dons 2-1 defeat at Field Mill, Martin Allen spoke to press and gave us his reaction to the match.
"We started the game very brightly; we looked very, very good; we looked sharp and the passing was good and after we scored the goal we never really looked the same to be honest.
"The two goals came completely out of the blue through individual errors and those sort of mistakes - you have to eradicate those. Clean sheets on away games are massively important and you can't afford those sort of mistakes."
"We were very comfortable [after Aaron Wilbraham's goal], we were dominating possession, dominating the game and then two moments of madness have cost us dear. We tried all sorts of different formations, different ways, put on several different options but we weren't able to unlock the door. We had a goal disallowed - it was all us in the second half but they defended very deeply and we weren't able to get round them."
"They worked extremely hard but every team that plays against us is going to do that and you have to match it and you have to stay with it for the duration of the game and not just for the first half hour. You have to keep that momentum and tempo for the duration and get used to it and every team that's going to play against us is going to be like that. There's no doubt about it, it's a big, big game when we come to town and you have to get used to it."
Speaking on the incident involving Mansfield midfielder Stephen Dawson, it was clear that Martin had not spotted that he had received two yellow card without being sent off: -
"I wasn't aware of that, I never spotted that - was it a Graham Poll, was it? If that's the case, then so be it but even so, with the team we've got we should be able to come here and win these games."
And when asked if he thought the two goals were the result of defensive errors: -
"They were, they came out of nothing, just straight balls up the middle and not dealt with - its not exactly individual brilliance or great creativity that carved us open or outstanding shots, magic that you have to hold your hands up to. It was just straight balls of nothing and any team that's going to be near the top has to keep clean sheets and that was particularly disappointing tonight."
And finally, when asked if tonight's result may have been the result of the players still getting to know each other: -
"Getting used to each other? I'm not sure about that; we've had five weeks together so that's long enough in my opinion. There were moments in the first half on Saturday that we were too open; too slack so I'll have to look at that. Obviously I'm not going to point fingers now at anybody; it's most important to go home now and watch the video and identify the areas of weakness and then you either carry on working on them at the training ground or you make changes but we have some good players injured at the moment and my options for changing it are not that great at this moment in time."
BBC Radio Nottm interview transcribed by Michael - Editor StagsMAD.co.uk
Peter Shirtliff "I'm delighted, I thought the players were excellent throughout the 90 minutes. I thought we started off a bit slow, which was surprising actually and funnily enough I thought their goal started us and we started to get the tempo of our game up."
"We Passed the ball better and quicker, and got after them a little bit and upset them, created problems for their back four, and got two good goals, and was delighted to go in at half time 2-1 up."
"It is difficult to face teams who play like that (with big players), I thought the back four was excellent, Carl Muggleton as well. They were well supported by our midfield players, who worked very hard throughout the game. Micky Boulding I took off, as he was looking a little tired, but he's that sort of player, an offensive player, who I think will cause problems for most teams, and the same for Matt Hamshaw."
"We look as though we'll score goals, and we need to show the same resiliance when we are defending"
"I don't think the defence struggled thoughout the game at Shrewsbury, just isolated incidents, but we have worked on things since then on Monday, and it's paid off tonight, we looked organised."
"We had opportunities to get the 3rd goal, Simon Brown was in on goal, but was very unlucky to get flagged offside"
"We had a penalty that was turned down, had another good shout for another one."
"I thought it was difficult to play the first 20 minutes of that 2nd half for both teams, it was a swirling wind and driving rain and it made conditions very difficult."
On the bizare actions of referee of Mr K Wright, not to send Stephen Dawson off, instead booking him twice, Shirtliff said "I didn't even know he'd been booked a 2nd time, I knew he'd been booked in the 1st half, but I didn't see the 2nd booking. That's totally baffled me that one"
"There is a confidence and a tight group, they are a great bunch. They have to concentrate for 90 minutes, and if we can produce and score goals, hopefully we can continue doing that"
Richie Barker "MK Dons are a good side, and they will in the top 6 or 7 at the end of the season, so that is a good result"
"It's nice to get off the mark, and get the first one out of the way, but more importantly it gives us the first win of the season"
"A bit confusing on the Dawson booking, we are still not quite sure what happened, so will have to wait to see."
Barker also confirmed that his contract extension is for 2 years, meaning he will stay at the Stags for a total of 3 years now, speaking about the deal, Barker concluded "I'm delighted the contract was sorted before the start of the season, I never wanted to leave, and wanted to know I would be here for a long time."