Mansfield Town boss delighted with ‘professional’ Stags ahead of FA Cup replay

editorial image

PAUL Cox was delighted to see his players heed his warning about staying professional against Ebbsfleet United on Saturday as they handed out a 4-1 spanking to the visitors.

However, Mansfield turned in a superb display and manager Cox said: “We have gone about our business in a professional manner and I am very pleased with this result.

“There are still things we can improve on but I can’t grumble after scoring four times at home.

“Now we face a tough game on Wednesday and must make sure we keep out feet on the floor and show the same mindset as today.

“We had to work extremely hard against a stubborn side today.

“These are grown up men and I don’t want to treat them like kids. If you ban talk of the FA Cup they go round corners and talk in other rooms.

“Our season is starting to take shape. We have some massive games to play and everything to look forward to. We want to embrace it all without getting carried away.

“There is no razamatazz or jumping around in the dressing room right now. They look focused and I like that.”

Man of the match Ben Hutchinson said: “It was a tough first half. But once we got that third goal they were dead and buried.

“But I thought we were always in control.

“A mistake cost us a goal. But the boys then tightened up and we did the business up front.

“This has always been coming. It was just about putting it together on the day and today we did.

“We all know what is ahead on Wednesday. But we want to win this league to be honest. That is our main focus so it was important to win today.

“Wednesday is now a massive game. To play Liverpool would be amazing, but first we have a job to do against Lincoln.”

Fleet boss Liam Daish was unhappy with the way referee Brett Huxtable let the game flow and said: “I think the way the referee interpreted the game today suited Mansfield.

“An early challenge put Liam Bellamy out of the game. It was late and straight over the top of the ball but we weren’t even given a free kick.

“We have quite a bit of physicality missing from the side right now and I have some lads out there who haven’t even grown into their bodies yet.

“Yet next week if I tell my lads to get stuck in, we’d have a different referee who interprets things differently and we’d be in trouble.

“The crucial decision today was when Lanre Azzez was pulled down in their box when we were starting to get on top at 2-1.

“If that wasn’t a penalty why didn’t he book him for diving? It’s either one or the other.”