Mansfield Town midfielder Simon Heslop is hoping Stags’ improved showing at Southend in Saturday’s 2-0 defeat can be taken into the tough home clash with Shrewsbury Town on Monday (1pm).
It will be the second of three testing games against top seven sides in League Two.
However, in defeat, the performance at Roots Hall was much improved on the previous weekend’s tame home surrender against York and Heslop said: “Obviously it’s disappointing to lose a game, but overall the performance wasn’t too bad.
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“We played well for large spells of the game. It was just about being better in both boxes and that killed us a bit today.
“Looking back I hope that is something we can take into Monday and the coming games after that.
“Southend are a very good team in this league with a lot bigger budget than Mansfield, not that that should matter, and they have a lot of good players.
“Today we have proved against a top team that we can match them in general play and there is not reason why we can’t go on and do that again against Shrewsbury - and be better in the box.
“We do have two more very tough games this week. But we do seem to be better against the better teams so maybe that’s a good thing?”