Solid defence can get Mansfield Town into the play-offs, says defender Ritchie Sutton

Mansfield Town's Ritchie Sutton.
Mansfield Town's Ritchie Sutton.

Ritchie Sutton believes Mansfield Town’s rock-solid defence can turn their play-off dreams into reality.

Mansfield have conceded just two goals in their first three League Two matches and have picked up six points in the process.

And with ninth-placed Stags still struggling for goals up front Sutton knows it is absolutely vital to keep it tight at the back.

“We are looking solid at the back and have taken our pre-season form into the season,” said Sutton.

“It was good to get our first clean sheet on Tuesday night and we are pleased with how things are progressing.

“We are looking for the play-offs as a minimum. We have all got high hopes.

“If we can keep clean sheets then we will win a lot of games.

“There will be a lot of 1-0 games because we are solid at the back and a lot of games won by a single goal as we have already seen.”

And Sutton, who has started all three league games, also believes that competition for places will help keep players on top form.

“We have got a strong unit at the back and any five players can slot into the three central defence positions available,” said Sutton.

“I played a lot of games last year and that has given me the confidence to push on this season and confidence is a big key.

“There is excellent competition for places at the back and that can only be good for the team.

“We have adopted a bit of a back-to-the-wall mentality, but that is something we have had to do.

“Inside the club there is great banter between the defenders. It is just part of that excellent team spirit that we have.

“We have a small squad, but we have really come together well as a unit.”

Mansfield make the long trip down to Dagenham on Saturday looking to make it three wins on the bounce after they beat Oxford 2-1 on Saturday and Newport 1-0 in midweek.