Although it ended in a mass brawl, new Mansfield Town midfielder Otis Khan said he had enjoyed the aggression of the full-blooded 90 minutes that had gone before in last night’s home ‘friendly’ with Sheffield Wednesday as it ‘felt like a proper game’.
Stags won 2-1 to make it three games unbeaten against Championship sides in pre-season friendlies.
The tackles were certainly flying in before the final whistle saw all hell break loose.
On the brawl, Khan said: “I’ve never seen that before. It got a bit fiery and it’s the first one I’ve seen.
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“I didn’t see it coming. There were a few tackles here and there, but it’s pre-season and the ref was trying to ride it out.
“But it just seemed to be one after the other and I think it was kind of a build-up of each tackle.
“It was a great game to play in. When it turns fiery it turns into a proper game, it’s not just a usual pre-season game. It felt like a real game out there.”
Khan, recently signed from Yeovil Town, has certainly enjoyed his first two games in front of the One Call Stadium home fans and can’t wait for the big kick-off a week on Saturday.
“Every pre-season game we’ve played here, we’ve had a really good turnout,” he said.
“It’s been really good. The fans have done nothing but get behind the players. It’s great to play here and I can’t wait until the season starts.
“I can’t wait now. This is what we’ve been building towards and pre-season seems to be dragging along now.
“I just want the first game of the season to start. I know when we eventually get to it we’ll all be ready.
“We are all excited. We have a real feel that we can do well this season. We haven’t been beaten in pre-season so far and we just want to keep that momentum going.
“We’ll keep building that confidence each game so when that first game comes we’re on it.”
He added: “We’ve shown we’re a match for them (Championship sides). It just shows that if we’re on it in League Two we have a real chance this year.
“Every game we’re progressing. The gaffer is showing us some plays on the training field and we’re putting that on the pitch.
“We just have to keep at it now. I thought everyone was really on it today and worked hard for each other.
“Each game is coming and we’re creating more chances and getting the goals. We’ll keep working hard in training and it’s only going to get better.”
Khan played a big part in last night’s opening goal for Mal Benning.
“I spotted a bit of space in behind and Mellis found me with a really good pass,” he said.
“I turned and had a shot, but luckily it came off to CJ who slotted Mal in – and he scored.
“That’s what we’re about really - finding those spaces and running into them. We have the players who can play the ball into those areas.
“We have really good players. Everyone knows exactly what their job is on the pitch.
“We have some really quality players out there who can really affect games and get us those all-important wins when we need them.”