Mansfield Town Manager Nigel Clough will take charge of his first game at Field Mill tonight in an EFL League Two match against Colchester United that will be the first of the season to allow five substitutes to be used.
The Football League this week agreed to the five subs rule as games are thick and fast from now until the new year with more strain than ever before on players under testing circumstances caused by covid-19.
Clough said his side have had a huge lift following victory against promotion chasing Forest Green last weekend stating “Everything has lifted this week and everyone has come in with a smile on their face. When you win matches at a football club, the players come in for training with that added buzz.”
“It’s wonderful to see. It was great to see them after the game on Saturday – normally we would go in straight away, but we left them for a few minutes to enjoy that feeling, which was important.”
“They’ve been close to it in the last few weeks, but to get there away from home at Forest Green, it’s given everybody a huge lift.”
“We had a couple of days off as the lads were shattered after the game. We’ve had a couple of good training sessions this week – we’re trying to slowly instil in the players what we want from them.”
Ahead of the visit of Colchester tonight Clough said “They are an extremely good team and they are another team, like Forest Green, who have settled into a pattern of play.”
“They are one of those teams that are more than capable of being up there around the top six or seven.”
On his own side he relayed “We want to see more of what we saw in the first-half at Forest Green. We want to take the game to teams when we can and play with a bit more freedom.”
“That’s the most difficult aspect when you’re down there, to play with that freedom. That’s why if we can get ourselves to a position of relative safety, the players can really relax and play a bit more.”
“It’s going to be a battle. It doesn’t matter how you get the results – if you come under the cosh and end up getting the three points, that’s all that matters at the moment.”
Joe Riley is long-term injured and George Maris is likely to miss out with bruised ribs whilst Tom Lapslie, the older brother of Stags in form midfielder George, could be a doubt for Colchester.
The U’s are currently seventh in the table and have won their last two league and cup games but were beaten a couple of weeks bacjk by Marine in the FA Cup although bounced back with a 6-1 win against Southend in the Football League Trophy before beating Leyton Orient at the Community Stadium last weekend.
Kick off tonight is 7pm with the match streamed live only on iFollow.
*Main image @mansfieldtownfc Nigel Clough says his players have been ‘lifted’ in training this week.