MANSFIELD Town boss Paul Cox thanked the noisy fans in the South Stand for playing their part in a first win in seven games – a 4-1 success against Braintree Town on Saturday, reports John Lomas.
He said: “I am not getting carried away – it’s only one win. But I don’t think some of our recent performances have warranted draws – we have deserved to win.
“So I have told the players to go out there with a smile and enjoy playing. Today they looked like they enjoyed it and they all put in a shift.
“They are all like little puppy dogs – they just want to please the supporters.
“I must thank the fans behind the goal who have given the stadium a different atmosphere and stayed behind the lads today and made them play. They make such a difference.
“That now makes us four unbeaten so it’s amazing how things can change.
“I thought the lads today carried things on from the Gateshad match on Tuesday and we played some great football.
“When Braintree scored from their first attack I did think here we go again. It will be 10 men behind the ball. The lads are only human and they looked anxious for a while.
“Credit to the lads. They played well but didn’t put their chances away on Tuesday, today they did.”
After going behind, on-loan defender John Dempster grabbed his first goal for the club to set them on the recovery road and said: “I thought it went well, though we should have probably started a bit quicker.
“Once we got into the game I thought we were quite comfortable. Overall it was a convincing performance.”
On his goal, he added: Verma put a great ball in from the left hand side and I couldn’t really miss to be honest.
“I should have got my first goal on Tuesday night so it was good to get on the scoresheet today.”
Braintree boss Alan Devonshire said: “It was down to individual errors again. But to be fair we were depleted so it wasn’t the greatest of preparation.
“On top of the suspensions, this morning we had two more pull out, one player in a car accident (Matt Pooley) and another ill (Pat O’Connor).
“We had to go 4-5-1 with the bodies we had. But I thought we did okay in the first half and scored a good goal.
“Mansfield’s first two goals came from corners and they didn’t have to work hard for any of their goals.
“Some of my side are young and naive but they have to learn quickly. We are playing against professional players and professional teams.
“The January window is coming up and I will change things if I have to. One thing I don’t want is getting into a relegation battle.
“Our main aim this year is 50 points and safety and I’d like to think we will be fine. But nothing in football is proven, you have to earn it.
“Mansfield are a decent side – they showed it at our place and the lad up front (Green) is a real handful and scores goals.”