Mansfield Town boss Adam Murray tells players to enjoy proving people wrong

Adam Murray. Pic by Dan Westwell
Adam Murray. Pic by Dan Westwell
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Mansfield Town boss watched his side dig deep for a thrilling 3-2 home win over Dagenham & Redbridge today to go fifth and told his players to just enjoy the finish to the season.

With bookies tipping Stags to go down pre-season, Murray is adamant there is no pressure on them as they continue to defy the odds.

But, with just 13 games to go, he also told them not to throw away a golden chance of proving everyone wrong.

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“It was a massive win. I’ve just told them – you have got a great opportunity here,” said Murray.

“We’ve only got 13 games left and you’ve put yourselves in a very good position.

“I want these players to enjoy this. Pre-season and over the summer people were writing me off as a manager and we were odds-on to go down. That gave me a fire.

“Now we are in this position I’ve told them to go out and prove every Tom, Dick and Harry wrong. We are in the mix for a reason and that is because we are a very good team. Let’s not throw it away now.

“Go out and play with freedom, we’ve nothing to lose. These boys have real passion for the shirt and the club – go out and show it. If we don’t win, we don’t win.

“I am happy with three points but disappointed with the first 45 minutes.

“After that we showed our team spirit to fight back. Fair play to the boys for that, but they know our standards are better than the first half.”

Murray continued: “They had a kick up the backside at half-time.

“It’s a weird time of the season now. I’ve watched games recently with the teams around us and people start shaking.

“A different pressure comes into it now and we’ve got to continue to believe how good we can be, and play with an enthusiasm and an energy, which we didn’t first half.

“Second half we came out the blocks and we showed what a good team we are. We should have had it won well before that nervy ending.”

Dagenham are bottom, without a win in six games, but fought to the end against 10-men Stags, who had Krystian Pearce red-carded on 82 minutes to set up what was a thrilling finish.

“These are the worst games – they’re bloody horrible. You have to understand teams are playing for their lives,” said Murray.

“We were there last year and we know how much teams put into it. You have to be ready. If you’re not you get your pants pulled down.

“We had to tweak the shape at half-time as the same shape saw us cancelling each other out.”

On Pearce’s dismissal, when he hauled down Jamie Cureton to concede a spot kick, that Cureton missed, Murray added: “It wasn’t a penalty. It was a free kick.

“It was close. It was a tough call to make in the heat of the moment.

“Krystian is saying he didn’t touch him. He just went down. From our angle we couldn’t really see.

“I will look at it again as we are not blessed with numbers in that department. But when was the last time an appeal was won here?”