Mansfield Town boss Paul Cox continued to avoid talk of winning the BSBP title, despite an 11th straight win – 1-0 at Tamworth today – that left them sitting pretty in second place, one point adrift of Kidderminster with three games in hand.
With just seven games to go, Stags now take on Gateshead at home on Monday before a crunch game at title rivals Wrexham on Thursday. But Cox’s feet remain firmly on the floor.
He said: “The Gateshead game on Monday is massive and we will have the lads in tomorrow early for a cool down, to make sure they get the right fluids and right food in them. We want to get them rejuvenated and make sure they get this game out of their legs.
“As soon as you get too big for yourself in this game, it comes down and bites you. Let’s just take it one game at a time, enjoy the ride and see where it takes us. I can’t afford to let my mind falter or get side-tracked in any way.”
An army of over 1,100 away fans backed Stags at The Lamb today and Cox said: “It is humbling to see that many come out to support us. The lads appreciated it and clapped them at the end.”
It was a tough, scrappy game, settled by a second half strike by defender Luke Jones and Cox said: “I am glad we’ve chalked off coming here. It is a hostile environment, a bobbly pitch, and we just had to grind out a result like we did last year.
“That was one of the ugliest games I’ve ever been involved in. It was a second ball game and we needed to adapt and overcome which, luckily, we did.
“We showed a battling, fighting spirit. At half-time I said it was one of those games that just one goal would decide, and it had to take Jonah to score it.
“Once you score you have to have the belief you can keep a clean sheet and grind out a result.
“We’ve been here before so we knew it wasn’t going to be a pretty game with much football played.”
He added: “I though Greg Taylot made a solid debut and the back four as a unit were solid. Greg was up against Adam Cunnington, who at 6ft 5ins is a monster in the air, and coped admirably.
“We were up against a team trying to avoid relegation and they threw the kitchen sink at us. But the lads put their heart and soul into winning the match. There wasn’t much quality, but the lads put in a hungry performance.
“Credit to Tamworth, some of the blocks they put in during the first half were immense.”