Mansfield Town midfielder Joel Byrom is hoping his first goal for the club in tonight’s 1-1 home draw with rivals Lincoln can help win him his starting place back under new boss David Flitcroft.
Byrom had lost his place four games back to Swansea loanee Adam King, but came on as a half-time sub tonight to put Stags ahead before Ollie Palmer’s last minute leveller spoiled Flitcroft’s first game in charge.
“I got the call at half-time to come on and I just wanted to have an impact on the game,” said Byrom.
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“Within five minutes I got the goal, which was pleasing. But it’s a shame we couldn’t hold on in the end.
“It was a great ball. Hayden did really well. He just put it in between the defender and the keeper and, to be fair, I had a feeling as soon as I set off that I was going to get on the end of it.
“It was my first goal in a couple of years and it’s got us a point at the end of the day, though I’d rather it had been three.”
But the late Palmer goal spoiled the night and Byrom said: “It hurts. We weren’t at our best tonight but we sort of contained them.
“Our defenders dealt with the way they play fantastically second half and we just had to get over the line. It was a bit of a sucker punch really right at the end. We just couldn’t hold on.
“A draw was probably a fair result in the end. We won’t know how important it is until the end of then season.”
On new manager Flitcroft’s first few days in charge, he said: “It’s been like a breath of fresh air. It’s been brilliant.
“The manager has come in and been so positive and the training has been fantastic. We now need to take things on board and go again at the weekend.
“He has tried to keep a lot of things the same as we’re on a good run but just implemented little things in training – little tweaks he can see.
“You can see the lads are flying in training and it’s all positive.
“I was a bit disappointed to be out the team but I just got my head down and worked hard. “Hopefully I had enough impact tonight to get a place at the weekend.”