Mansfield Town manager Paul Cox was back in front of the local media this morning for the first time since Boxing Day.
Cox explained he had decided to try a different routine and give his players more personal attention rather than meet the press before the game at Cheltenham.
When Stags won that, Cox, being superstitious as are so many in the game, decided to keep that new routine of not doing the press going which, brought three unbeaten games.
But it came crashing to a halt in Saturday’s 2-0 defeat at home to Scunthorpe and, after being away on Tuesday morning when a press conference was due, he was back in front of the cameras today.
He explained: “It’s easy to get carried away in football and sometimes you have to find yourself. Before the Cheltenham game I had a look at the things I was doing and wondered if my concentration towards the players had altered.
“I decided to give them 100 per cent and get round and talk to them all.
“I have heard all the conspiracy theories but they were wrong.
“I felt the bits and bobs I added helped to a positive result and everyone who knows me knows how superstitious I am.
“So I asked Adam Murray and Micky Moore if they could take the job on with the press while we put together that little run.
“They were really tough matches, but we won two of them, drew one and only lost to the team at the top of the league.
“I do enjoy talking to the press before and after games. But my main priority is the mindset of my footballers.”
After a tricky end to 2013, Cox is hoping his side can now go on a second half of the season run of success for the third year on the trot, starting at Portsmouth on Saturday.
“In the two and a half years since I have been here we have had an incredible amount of success and our stats for 2013 were amazing. That sort of success might not come around again for another 10 years which is hard for people to understand,” he said.
“All that happened last year was that we had a blip between October and December, as we have had before. My job now is to try to create the right mindset coming round the bend for the last 20 games like I have done since I have been here and since I have been in management.
“Anyone who puts together a run of three or four games now, not getting beaten, will all of a sudden find themselves in a totally different position.
“We need to get rid of a bit of anxiety. At home there is a lot of anxiety among supporters and players, and teams are playing on that.”