Long but happy journey home says Lee Collins after late win at Morecambe

Lee Collins
Lee Collins

Mansfield Town defender Lee Collins said the two late goals they grabbed to win 2-1 at Morecambe last night made a long, late journey home much happier.

Trailing 1-0 to a 71st minute Paul Mullin penalty, Stags levelled through Chris Clements on 86 minutes before Adi Yussuf won it on 90 minutes.

“It was brilliant. They are the games we should live for, especially away from home,” smiled Collins.

“You nick a win like that in the last few minutes with a three-hour trip ahead of you, it just makes your day.

“It just shows our strength in depth with the starting XI and the subs coming on.

“It has picked us back up. We weren’t too down, but it wasn’t a great performance on Saturday. There are so many points to play for so why not just let the shackles off and go for it now?

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“Tonight was about belief and self-pride. The lads didn’t want to go home with a loss. So we dug in deep and managed to get our just rewards.”

He added: “We were very much on top first half but we let them get a foothold second half.

“I’ve not really seen the penalty decision so I’ll keep my opinion to myself.

“They were a bit hard to break down second half, but luckily we ended up getting two goals and really turned it around.

“It just showed the character of the lads. Everyone played their part and everyone believed we could come back, steal the points, and go home.”

Collins joined the club last summer as an accomplished centre half but has already had to play at right back.

Last night he was utilised at left back for the first time and turned in a man of the match display, defending strongly as well as getting forward.

“I’ve been right back a few times and centre back, but not left back here, he said.

“I thought I did all right. I had a steady first half then started to get involved more further up the pitch second half and luckily played a part in the goals.”

Matt Green and Chris Clements were both claiming the equaliser – but Collins couldn’t call it.

He said: “I chipped the ball into the box, Adi’s done a great header and put the keeper under pressure. He’s not saved it properly, it’s rolled past him and I’m not sure who toed it in. I knew it was going to go in the back of the net and I was busy celebrating.

“You’ve got more licence to go forward as a full back, though I forget that at times as I’ve got my defending head on and always want to sit near the halfway line.

“I used to enjoy going forward, so it was nice to get forward again today.

“You won’t see it that often, but when I do I feel there’s a bit of quality behind it.

“I’d like to play there Saturday. But we’ve got superb options there.

“We’ve brought Kav (loanee Sean Kavanagh) in and obviously we’ve got Mal (Benning) coming back, hopefully sooner rather than later as he was a great addition at the start of the season.”

Yussuf and Kavanagh were both involved in the goals while fellow sub Jack Thomas also did well and Collins said: “The substitutions were massive and he (boss Adam Murray) got them spot on. Hopefully he gets his just rewards for that.

“It’s easy to get into a bit of an accidental negative mode when you’re on the bench as you want to be out there, but for the lads to come on and show what they’ve got, they really are a credit to themselves.”