Mansfield Town manager Nigel Clough happy with 'derby' tie at Doncaster Rovers

Mansfield Town boss Nigel Clough was delighted with his side's FA Cup second round draw away at struggling League One neighbours Doncaster Rovers as Stags aim for a third win in a row at Stevenage on Saturday.

By John Lomas
Tuesday, 9th November 2021, 4:25 pm
Mansfield Town midfielder Stephen Quinn in action during the FA Cup win at Sunderland. Picture by Chris Holloway/The Bigger Picture.media
Mansfield Town midfielder Stephen Quinn in action during the FA Cup win at Sunderland. Picture by Chris Holloway/The Bigger Picture.media

Clough's revitalised men won 1-0 at League One Sunderland in the FA Cup first round on Saturday for a second season in succession with their reward a trip to the Keepmoat Stadium over the weekend of 4th December.

“It's a good draw, geographically speaking,” said Clough. “We would have loved to have been at home but distance-wise, it's great for our supporters.

“It will be another tough game for us, against another League One side away from home

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“But we have to play Stevenage, Sutton United and Crawley away in quick succession, so it's good to have a tie that is just up the road.

“We had over 1,300 fans travel to Sunderland last weekend so I would hope that we can increase the numbers for our tie at Doncaster 30 or so miles away.

“With that said, I'd have loved to have had a home tie for our supporters. The fans were absolutely vital for us at Sunderland and will be again when we play Doncaster.”

The win at Sunderland built on the home victory over Tranmere, which had ended a winless run of 14 games, and Clough said: “Confidence is much higher than it was a few weeks ago, but the only way to keep it high is to keep winning games.

“Our last four performances have been very good. It's important that we try to keep our standards high.”

Clough knows how tough Saturday's game at Stevenage will be.

“They've just had a confidence-boosting FA Cup result - a very good 2-2 draw with MK Dons,” he said.

“We know from our game down there last season that they're a good home side. They've only lost once at home this season.

“But everybody here is a little more jovial now. The training ground is always a happier place when the team is winning.”

However, Clough's hopes of his injury crisis easing have been rocked with three of Saturday's Sunderland heroes doubtful for the weekend.

Goal hero Rhys Oates has a groin problem with George Lapslie (thigh) and Elliott Hewitt (foot) all on the treatment table along with defender Kellan Gordon (knee), who also remains a doubt.