Boss John Dempster was furious over another poor start by his Mansfield Town side in today’s 2-2 home draw with Morecambe.
For a second week in a row Stags had to battle back from 2-0 down after failing to start on the front foot and Dempster said: “We were 2-0 down so I supposed it’s not a bad point, but we will this week really focus on how we start football matches as that was unacceptable.
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“There was a lot of emotion running around today and you have to be careful not to say the wrong thing. We will speak on Monday and review the video, then have a discussion.
“I want characters, leaders, people that are not scared when the crowd are on their back. People who react well to adversity. I know people get frustrated when you are 2-0 down at home and you have to use the moans and groans to get back in the game.
“It was a very disappointing start to say the least. You can’t start football matches like that.”
He added: “I gave the players a pat on the back last week for their reaction after being 2-0 down at half-time.
“But today was not good enough and they were questioned at half-time if they had the character to come back into the game again. They answered that question with a yes – they have.
“But I expect that kind of character and determination from minute one.
“You know what you are going to get with Morecambe. They are going to be in your face from the start and fight for every inch. If you don’t match them you come up short as we did in the first half hour.”
Stags also ended up with 10 men for a second game in a row after a silly lunge by Matty Preston.
“The sending-off was disappointing. There was no need for Matty Preston to make that challenge,” said Dempster.
“ He is very apologetic in the changing room. That decision was not good enough but it take a man to hold his hand up and say he is wrong.
“Discipline will be key throughout this campaign. If we are not disciplined we won’t win enough matches.”
He continued: “I believe in these players. I believe it’s in there and this squad of players is good enough to reach our goal. If I didn’t I would not have taken the job.”
Stags take on Morecambe at home again on Tuesday in round one of the Carabao Cup.