Fightback against Port Vale could help restore missing confidence believes Mansfield Town boss Graham Coughlan

New Mansfield Town boss Graham Coughlan believes today's brave late fightback in the 2-2 home draw with Port Vale will help restore his players' missing confidence.

Thursday, 26th December 2019, 6:30 pm
Mansfield Town's Nicky Maynard watches as CJ Hamilton's shot beats Port Vale goalkeeper Scott Brown for the Stags equaliser.
Mansfield Town's Nicky Maynard watches as CJ Hamilton's shot beats Port Vale goalkeeper Scott Brown for the Stags equaliser.

Although without a win in his two games so far, Coughlan was delighted to see his new charges knuckle down and come back from 2-0 down with nine minutes to go to level through Nicky Maynard and CJ Hamilton.

He said: “We don't look as if we have composure in front of goal and that's obviously down to self-belief and confidence, as is our vulnerability at the back.

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“Hopefully today will give them confidence. They are creating chances.

“One thing is for sure – we are getting honesty, we're getting hard work, we're getting graft, we're getting commitment from the players – and that's a start.

“I am probably going to sound like a broken record, but that's another game at home we should have won. It was two points dropped.

“We showed a lot of qualities that I like plus some vulnerabilities I dislike.

“I loved the character, I loved them rolling their sleeves up and fighting back into the game. Now they have shown me character and what they are made of, that they can come back in the face of adversity. That's a massive positive.”

Danny Rose missed two sitters as Stags failed to take their earlier chances and Coughlan admitted: “We had opportunities. They only had one chance in the first half – a free header which is concerning. Otherwise the first half belonged to us.

“The goals we conceded were poor. It's frustrating and annoying. But we will get there.

“But we've not had much chance to work hard really. My working hard and the players' working hard are two different things.

“We have game after game and I can't wait to settle down and go Saturday to Saturday so we can get some work into the players and get our ideas and philosophies across.

“But the lads have given their all again. On another day they might not have come back.”

Once again a big home crowd played their part with some terrific backing and Coughlan added: “Yet again the fans have got us back into a game and yet again the fans have got us over the line.

“They are doing their bit and I am now asking the players to step up to the plate and reward the fans as the fans have been magnificent in the last two games.”

Stags now head for Bradford City on Sunday (3pm).