Stevenage take on Mansfield Town - read what Stags boss Steve Evans had to say ahead of their Sky Bet League Two clash at Field Mill
PUBLISHED: 15:49 17 November 2017 | UPDATED: 16:01 17 November 2017
Stevenage face a tough trip to atmospheric Field Mill to take on Steve Evans Mansfield Town on Saturday.
Darren Sarll’s men held Sky Bet League Two leaders Notts County to a hard-fought 1-1 draw at the Lamex last time out to cap a good week – and after two cup victories they’ll be looking to build upon that against Stags who sit two places about Boro in 11th.
Sarll’s men have only won one league game from the last six but it was the last-gasp 3-2 victory over against second placed Accrington Stanley.
They also eased past Northern Premier side Nantwich Town 5-0 in the FA Cup first round, and beat Brighton and Hove Albion’s U21 side in the Checkatrade Trophy this month – and Evans has warned his men to expect a tough battle.
Speaking to John Lomas of the Mansfield and Ashfield Chad, the experienced Evans – who Sarll worked under during their spell at Rotherham United – previewed the game saying: “The one thing you recognise in League Two is that top can beat bottom but bottom can beat top or anyone.
“Just look at the games last weekend, I think only one of the play-off teams won their game. The rest lost or drew. It shows how tough it is in this league.
“Does anyone want to play Barnet right now, who are down there? Does anyone want to play Chesterfield? They are good teams with good players.
“Swindon came here and wiped the floor with us but had to get a 97th minute penalty – and it was never a penalty – against Chesterfield on Saturday, who were unlucky not to win.”
The Stags are unbeaten in seven matches and will pose a tough test for Boro on Saturday. Evans added: “I want to be near the top group in the New Year. “Any club is allowed to dream, but it’s a marathon, not a sprint.
“We have a new group here. Notts County are top and Kevin Nolan has done a terrific job.
“But it has to be said 99 per cent of that squad was built by the guy they sacked, John Sheridan – that’s just a fact – and tells you that continuity with a set of players will ultimately be more successful than a new group.
“I think we are getting nearer but we’ve still got a long, long way to go.
“I really do believe as the season develops we will get better and stronger. And we will try to make the group a little bit stronger again in January.”
With thanks to John Lomas and Steven Thirkhill of the Mansfield and Ashfield Chad.