Craig Priest Stags blog: Certain moments can change a season

FOURTEEN days is a long time for a football fan to wait between games, and when your sides in form, waiting is the last thing you want to do.

At full time on Saturday however it was like the Stags hadn’t been away at all, a clinical-finishing performance seeing them thrash Dartford by five goals to nill.

The scoreline, as always in football, doesn’t tell the whole story and in truth had Alan Marriott not made the early save to deny Nathan Collier and then Adam Murray blasting home the opener seconds later at the other end, we could be talking about a different outcome entirely.

In truth the first half was poor but I believe that football is about moments, I think on Saturday Mansfield supporters witnessed three moments which could just shape our beloved sides season for the better.

The first two are mentioned above whilst the third was the brave decision at the break from Cox to bring on Briscoe for Meikle, the latter is a class act but wasn’t getting anything against Darts full back Adam Green, Briscoe’s introduction of brawn and muscle pushed Green back and as a result, allowed Stags to control the midfield.

All five goals were taken well and once more the expectation level rises with Barrow up next, a team we netted seven against at home last term. The record may sound stuck again but we have to remain grounded, that was then and this is now – we can still improve and won’t be there until that final, full time whistle blows.

Statistically we are a side improving game by game, we have the 3rd best attack and the 6th best defence in the division – this can change quickly though but hey, so long as we stick behind the lads like we did during that frustrating first half, we’ll get to where we want to be.