Evans hails MacDonald's display

Steve Evans gets animated in the game with Barnet. Photo by Howard Roe.
Steve Evans gets animated in the game with Barnet. Photo by Howard Roe.

Mansfield Town manager Steve Evans was full of praise for midfield ace Alex MacDonald after his spectacular goal and another superb display in today's 3-1 home win over bottom club Barnet.

MacDonald scored a superb curling goal just before the break to put Stags in charge and on their way to three points and Evans smiled: “I said Alex MacDonald could play in the Championship – and he endorsed that today.

"Not just with his effort and determination to get around the pitch but with a stunning goal.

“It was one of our best goals of the season, but he does that on a regular basis in training.

“We encourage the wee man to pull the trigger and get it on target. He's not short on confidence and nor should he be. He's got a heart the size of Big Ben. I love the boy.”

Stags dominated the game and could have won by a bigger margin, but in the end conceded a late goal after a poor header back to his keeper by Rhys Bennett which encouraged a late Barnet onslaught.

“We should have had seven. The dominance was there for everyone to see,” said Evans.

“I thought we were brilliant until the last few minutes.

“The gulf was massive and that is credit to everyone of the boys as Barnet have got some good players.

“We had to step up and produce a really solid performance.

“The way we moved the ball in the second half was impressive.

“It should have been a clean sheet. I don't know what was going through his mind when Rhys tried to head it back. It was a poor decision.

“We battled away, scored a fantastic goal from Macca, having missing a couple of chances before that.

“Second half we spoke about concentration levels and moving the ball quicker and I thought we were brilliant for the first 40 minutes.”

Evans continued: “We were quicker and sharper, played a lot of one-twos, and had a lot of chances.

“We scored two goals and it looked like it was going to be four or five. Then Rhys Bennett decides to be a player. When Rhys decides to be a player he's not very good.

“That should have been put in row Z. If he makes many more errors like that he goes out. There are competition for places.

“It just creates some uncertainty at the end with them putting balls into the box. I am sure Rhys will learn from it as he was otherwise excellent.”

Stags might have had an early penalty when Rose went down and Evans said: “I don't know what we have to do to get a penalty. The one on Danny Rose after 10 minutes or do was potentially a game-changer, but we don't get those decisions.”