Steve Evans has warned the Mansfield Town faithful there will be ups and downs throughout the season as the Stags mount a promotion push from League Two - but has stated “we’re all in it together”.
Evans was speaking in the wake of Saturday’s defeat at Colchester United which saw some travelling supporters vent their frustrations at the result towards the Mansfield players after the final whistle.
The Stags boss thought his side were “unfortunate” to have lost 2-0 given the effort shown, particularly in the second half, but was keen to stress the disappointment was felt throughout the club from the board room to the boot room.
He said: “If our players bleed, the management team bleeds and our directors bleed and our supporters bleed because nothing changes. You win together and you lose together, especially when you have high ambitions for the season.
“Before every game, whether it be at home or away, whether it’s a win, a draw or a loss, myself and Paul (Raynor, assistant manager) have always insisted that our players, and staff when appropriate, go over to the supporters and acknowledge them for, first and foremost, turning up, and secondly to appreciate them whether they’ve watched a win, draw or loss.
“I’m the first to say every week that it is hard-earned money that these supporters pay.
“But when I see three to four lads pass me in the middle of the pitch and into the dressing room almost shell-shocked because they’ve given it a real go in the second half, that’s a professional opinion and with a view of looking at it back.
“We just have to say that we’re in it together, win lose or draw and we need our supporters. There are going to be ups and downs.”
And added: “I heard Kenny Jackett (Portsmouth manager) talk about Portsmouth’s win at the weekend and saying it was a new group. This is even more of a new group, so consistency is always going to be a factor and that’s why I’ve always spoken about the second half of the season.”
One goal a piece from Sean Murray and Mikael Mandron in the space of five first half minutes was all that separated the two teams at the Colchester Community Stadium.
It leaves the Stags two points off the play-offs after 12 games.
“All of our supporters were disappointed, even the ones who clapped us off,” said Evans.
“Probably 90 per cent did clap the team off and they’ll be disappointed because after a sterling performance against Notts County and an emphatic victory we should be going there and getting the type of result that sees us in that promotion pack.
“We found ourselves short but they have come back in today (Monday) and gone back on the training ground. They have thanked me for my support. I am the leader, the person ultimately responsible for them.
“I’ll say this for a final time and won’t discuss it again – they bleed, all the staff bleed. We’re all together and more importantly our supporters are the same.
“The words of supporters around the stadium walking up to the training ground and coming into the offices is heartfelt and taken with the right thought process.
“We all need to be together. We will all learn from Saturday. We’ll learn tactically, our players will learn. We’ll try and improve on it.
“We just want all our supporters to be with us all of the way because only if you all pull the rope in the same direction do you get rewards.
“If you get any form of percentage pulling in a different way, it never happens for you. So we will continue to applaud the supporters before and after every game, home or away, win lose or draw.”