Mansfield Town going into the play-offs in good heart and with momentum says boss Nigel Clough

Mansfield Town boss Nigel Clough said Stags were going into the play-offs in good heart and with momentum after this afternoon's thrilling 2-2 home draw with champions Forest Green Rovers booked a two-legged semi-final with Northampton Town.

Saturday, 7th May 2022, 6:39 pm

The sides will meet at the One Call Stadium next Saturday night for the first leg with the return at Sixfields on Wednesday, 18th May.

“That was the club's best points tally in over 20 years and we've broken a few records along the way this season so I think we are going into the play-offs in good heart with some momentum,” he said.

“It was an incredible finish and absolutely heart-breaking for Northampton, but congratulations to Bristol Rovers.

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Mansfield Town manager Nigel Clough

“I think the home leg will be where it will be decided.

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“Our performances at home have been outstanding. We need to make sure we are in with more than a chance after the first leg.

“The fans were absolutely brilliant today. We sold every home seat today.

“The owners have put a fortune in over the years and I am sure they sometimes think 'why are we doing this?'

“But on days like today it must seem worthwhile to them.

“This is a magnificent achievement by everybody – the whole squad has made a contribution.

“We've extended the season and we are going to give it the best possible shot we can.”

Stags went into the day with half a chance of a top three automatic promotion finish but that went quickly as their rivals quickly went ahead.

In the end, Stags finished seventh and Clough said: “We are still in with a chance and before kick-off we'd have taken that. “Our aim at the start of the season was to get in the top seven.

“Obviously we'd have loved automatic but, with a game to go, all we could do was lose it really with the other fixtures and the way they were going.

“Bristol Rovers were always going to win so it was all about making sure we got that point. It was tough, but we got there.

“They needed a point to win the league so it couldn't have worked out better for both teams.

“It was important we scored as you don't fancy keeping a clean sheet against Forest Green. They are always going to cut you open at some point.”