No new faces as Stags hunt first home win

With the season's first win chalked up, manager Neil Cox gives a big thumbs up to the Stags' fans at the final whistle.
With the season's first win chalked up, manager Neil Cox gives a big thumbs up to the Stags' fans at the final whistle.

It looks unlikely Mansfield Town will be bringing in any more new faces before the current transfer window closes on Monday as they set their sights on gaining a first home win back in the Football League when Dagenham and Redbridge visit the One Call Stadium on Saturday.

Stags fought out a pulsating 2-2 home draw with former Premier League giants Portsmouth on Saturday and boss Paul Cox said he was happy with his current squad.

“I think the squad we have is good enough, though you are always looking to improve,” he said. “First and foremost, the 11 players starting games have done well, but we also have some very, very good players waiting in the wings depending on our shape and systems, as you’ve seen with our reserve team’s results.

“We have explored different avenues, but, if I am totally honest, I don’t think there will be any ins or outs.

“Before we can bring anyone else in we need to get one or two out and so we will have to be patient. I am not trying to force the issue with anyone and it’s a nice position to be in.”

Last weekend Ben Hutchinson put Mansfield ahead before Portsmouth roared back to lead at the break, but Lindon Meikle’s reply earned a point and Stags did have chances to win it.

“I thought we were a bit unlucky on Saturday and we wanted the game to go on another 20 minutes,” said Cox.

“Portsmouth are a very good side who will be there or thereabouts in the top three at the end of the season and we gave a good account of ourselves and were maybe unfortunate not to go on and win it.

“Dagenham on Saturday will be a different kind of game and a different kind of opposition and we are going to have to adapt accordingly.”

The Daggers have had an almost identical start to Mansfield’s, sitting above Stags only on goal difference.

There was more good news at the One Call this week as summer signing, midfielder Keiran Murtagh, shook off his pre-season injury to resume full training and is due to figure in a behind-closed-doors friendly today against a team of young players released by professional clubs.

Stags’ reserves maintained their 100 per cent start with a 3-1 home win over Hull City last week, Ross Dyer, Meikle and Lee Stevenson on target, while Stags Ladies began their season with a point, having to come back from 2-0 down to draw with Leicester City at the weekend.