PAUL Cox bemoaned his side’s continued lack of a ruthless streak as they threw away a 2-0 lead to draw 2-2 at York City today.
Two sloppy goals, the last in stoppage time, left Mansfield with their 12th league draw of a frustrating campaign and Cox said: “It feels like we’ve lost and I am gutted for the players.
“But we have conceded two very sloppy goals which York have not had to work for after scoring two great goals of our own.
“I am sick of saying it, but we should have won eight of the 12 games we have drawn and be sitting in the top two or three. We need to be more ruthless and see games out.
“Good sides would come here and go 2-0 up and the game would end up 2-0 or 2-1. It’s down to mental toughness.
“We need to become more ruthless. I hope the feeling the players are feeling now will help them get that ruthless streak quickly. It feels like a defeat and the lads are really hurting.
“The supporters who have travelled up today have seen the lads gave everything today. But sometimes that’s not enough.
“To be fair, the lads have looked after themselves very well over Christmas and New Year and they looked fit, hungry and strong so I can’t blame that.
“And credit to York. They came out in the second half and pressed us hard. But we kept a good shape and when we scored our second goal I thought it was game over as I couldn’t see York scoring.
“If we put our foot through it at the end, then we kill the two minutes and win. We have to make the right decisions.
On Gary Roberts’ debut he added: “I thought he did well today.
“It was a heavy pitch and not the best to play on but I thought he showed glimpses of what he is all about.”
Cox is not about to give up the chase as the play-off gap remained at seven points for his side.
“We still have 60 points to play for and all the top sides have still go to play each other.
“I still believe but we have to start being ruthless.”
Matt Green bagged his 16th goal of the season, but said: “We have a great team spirit so I am not going to blame anyone.
“But we have run around for 90 minutes, dominated for spells and taken our chances, yet only come away with a point.
“There are 16 lads down there in that dressing room absolutely devastated and we need to figure out where we are going wrong.
“I don’t think there is a team better than us when we are doing what we do best. But we have to see games out and grind out results and that’s something we have not got the knack of yet.”