COX AND DEVONSHIRE REACTION
audio interview with Paul Cox from BBC Radio Nottm --->
IRON HELD BY MANSFIELD
Iron Manager Alan Devonshire said afterwards: "I'm pleased with a point because what with all that had gone on during the week we knew it would be a totally different game. We certainly looked tired particularly in the last 20 minutes and again it's a big learning curve for the players. But they did well today but I think I will have to perhaps freshen up the side for the next two games which will be tough."
Cox challenges Mansfield players to prove they have turned a corner
PAUL Cox has challenged his Mansfield Town players to prove they turned a corner at Braintree – by beating Luton at Field Mill tomorrow night.
The Stags were disappointed not to pick up their first win of the season as they were held 1-1 in Essex at the weekend.
But there were signs the team is gradually getting things together, having lost 3-0 at Gateshead in their previous outing.
Boss Cox now wants his players to show their display at Cressing Road was no flash in the pan when they host the Hatters, who were 5-1 winners over Southport at the weekend.
"I had to make some big decisions in terms of team selection, but sometimes you have to be brave and then expect the backlash if you get it wrong," he said.
"I think that was as close to a good Blue Square Bet Premier performance as I've seen from us so far.
"But the proof of the pudding will be tomorrow night, because we still didn't win the game.
"We will have the home support and for me I wish we could just pick that performance up from Braintree and produce it again tomorrow."
Cox made four changes against the Iron but is unlikely to make too many for the visit of Gary Brabin's side.
He said: "If it's not broken, you don't need to fix it. I want a side that I'm comfortable with and it picks itself because then you know you're getting it right.
"I don't want to be chopping and changing all the way through to Christmas. I want a settled formula."
Braintree boss delighted with the way his side are adapting
ALAN Devonshire is delighted with the way his Braintree Town side are adjusting to life in the Blue Square Premier following their 1-1 draw with Mansfield.
The Iron were last season's Blue Square South champions yet were still one of the pre-season favourites to struggle at the higher level.
But the part-time outfit have now taken four points from their first three games – two more than the Stags – and have thrashed Grimsby 5-0 in the process.
"There were seven of them who were here last year and I have brought the other four in and I'm pleased with the way we have played, we have started off really well," said former West Ham favourite Devonshire.
"I thought it was a tough game against Mansfield, quite even, between the two sides. I thought it was a fair result and both sides could have nicked it at times.
"In the second half we looked a little bit mentally tired because it has been a big week for the club and has taken a lot out of the boys.
"Being part-time doesn't help, but they dug in."
Stags fan view: Leanne Gravil, of the Ollerton Stags Supporters Club
I MUST admit I was fearing the worst on Saturday following a very poor performance up at Gateshead on Tuesday night, coupled with Braintree's 5-0 demolition of Grimsby. However, the 'joy' of following football, and in particular the Stags, is that you just never know what you are going to get.
What we saw at the weekend was a much better performance. You have to be happy with a point away from home, although had we been more clinical in front of goal we would have taken away our first three points of the season.
Dyer, Green, Meikle and Briscoe were causing all sorts of problems for the home defence. On another day and with different officials Braintree may have been reduced to ten men and we may have had a penalty late on but you take these things on the chin and get on with it.
Once again we conceded from a set piece, which is very frustrating as we see it so many times. Paul Cox said at the beginning of the season that he didn't want the fans to be holding their head in their hands every time we concede a corner or free kick. Well we still do I'm afraid, and with good reason!
I'm sure this will improve given time, a settled side and some work in training. The addition of 'Big Ben' Futcher should certainly help.
Latest | August 2011