Stags players feeling the pressure, admits boss Cox

Paul Cox
Paul Cox

STAGS boss Paul Cox admitted the pressure was getting to his players after they failed to win in a 1-1 draw at bottom club Bath City this afternoon.

Although they missed four good chances, Stags know, in the end they were lucky to leave Twerton Park with a point in a frenzied finish.

Cox said: “There was an intense pressure on us to win the game today and it showed in that last 15 minutes as we went gung-ho to win it, leaving big gaps at the back. It just sums us up at the moment.

“We need to start from zero again and structure things down. I want players to go out there and play with a smile on their faces, whatever is going off around them.

“Pressure comes from within and there is expectation at this football club. The players feel they are under-achieving.

“So they are starting to make erratic decisions with feeling that pressure.

“Players are not stupid and we are going into every game feeling if we don’t win then it’s the end of the world. Even when they have won sometimes players don’t seem to have enjoyed winning.

“We need to change their mindset and quickly. Were we ever going to win the league this season? No. We have to be realistic about this group of players and what we want to achieve.

“I think it’s probably the younger players that are feeling it a bit and it is grow-up time. They need to play with a smile and start winning football matches.”

Cox added: “Goals change games and we missed two one-on-ones today at important times.

“The first half was fairly even though we were sloppy for their goal.

“We have scored and then had a great chance to go 2-1 up which we’ve missed.

“Second half we have another one-on-one with their keeper. If Matt Green scores that, the game is won. But I thought we were really poor for the last 15 minutes.”