DEARDEN, BUXTON AND SCHOFIELD REACTION
SCHOFIELD: "IT WAS DIFFICULT FOR US"; DEARDEN: "TOP HALF IS THE GOAL NOW"
Evening Post website
Goals in each half from Barry Conlon and Nathan Arnold gave Mansfield a derby victory over out-of-form Lincoln.
The game got off to a controversial start when referee David Foster pointed to the penalty spot after Lincoln defender Lee Beevers went shoulder-to-shoulder with Mansfield striker Simon Brown.
Lincoln grabbed a consolation when Jamie Forrester hit his 17th goal of the season on 74 minutes, but the home-side failed to create another opportunity to earn a much needed point.
Disappointed Lincoln manager John Schofield said: "It has been a difficult week but we put out a team which we believed could get three points.
"I could not question the commitment and effort but perhaps we just lacked a little bit of experience and devilment to create the chances. At 2-0 down we had a man sent off but we rolled our sleeves up.
"For the penalty I thought it was shoulder-to-shoulder but if the referee thinks it was a push in the back then it is a push in the back, it should not have got that far, we were defending a throw-in."
Schofield admitted he thought his side were denied a penalty adding: "Obviously the referee has seen it from a different angle, we were side on, he was probably right behind the tackle, it did look as though there was no contact with the ball but at the beginning of the season we were getting penalties and it's now probably evening itself out. "
Mansfield boss Billy Dearden said: "We have now taken seven points out the last nine points against three clubs in the top five which is good.
"We have done very well against the top teams now we have got to start picking up points from the teams around us.
"Like I said on my first day here we have got to get in the top half of the table.
"Simon Brown did well, I'm pleased for him. We thought with his pace he could play off Barry Conlon and get behind them which he did for the penalty and he set up the second goal as well."
Audio interview with Billy Dearden from BBC Radio Nottingham (RealPlayer needed) http://www.bbc.co.uk/nottingham/realmedia/football/2007/stags_lincoln_away_manager.ram
Audio interview with Jake Buxton from BBC Radio Nottingham (RealPlayer needed) http://www.bbc.co.uk/nottingham/realmedia/football/2007/stags_lincoln_away_player.ram
Delighted manager Billy Dearden said: "I thought we did very well.
"We set off bright and I thought the penalty was a fair penalty.
"You don't wish for people to be sent off but Browny was clean through and their lad fouled him so I thought he should have been sent off then, although he did eventually go for another foul in the second half.
"I thought we dominated for long spells and created a lot of chances.
"The only thing that disappointed me was how we played after they went down to 10 men.
"Everybody thinks they can have an extra touch because they are playing against 10 men when the opposition are working their socks off. We have got to be better against 10 men.
"We were comfortable at 2-0 up and breaking well. Then we should have cut out the cross that found Forrester and we allowed him too much space and he scored.
"But all in all it was a tremendous performance.
"I was chuffed to bits for young Nathan to get his goal. And it was lovely to see the fans give Matt Hamshaw a standing ovation. I know he appreciates how everyone is behind him and we always will be while he is at this football club."
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11:00 - 05 March 2007
Lincoln manager John Schofield refused to make excuses after losing to former side Mansfield.
The Imps were decimated after a bout of illness spread through the squad but their manager insisted it wasn't to blame for the 2-1 defeat.
He said: "It's been a difficult week but you have weeks like this over the season. We are never ones for making excuses and we put out a team we believed could get us three points.
"You can't question the effort or commitment, but at times we lacked a bit of experience and devilment to get that final chance.
"At 2-0 down with a man sent off we rolled our sleeves up, showed character and on another day you get the point."
Lincoln disputed Mansfield's first half penalty after Lee Beevers brought down Simon Brown. But Schofield was more concerned with the defending that let the Stags man get free in the first place.
"He shouldn't have got that far," he said. "This game is about making decisions.
"We ask the players to make more decisions the way we play, but defending and clearing your lines doesn't change. If in doubt smash it out. I don't care who boos. They can boo all they want - defend it. I thought it was shoulder-to-shoulder but if the referee says it's a push in the back, it's a push in the back."
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