Mansfield Town boss Adam Murray was furious tonight that his side didn’t heed his warnings about an ‘After the Lord Mayor’s Show’ display at Accrington Stanley after their superb win at Notts County on Friday.
Despite underlining what could happen as everyone heaped praise on his players, Murray watched his side slump to a 1-0 defeat at the Wham Stadium, a deflected goal winning a poor game.
“We talked about it before the game, we spoke about it Saturday, we spoke about it Sunday, we spoke about it Monday – we pre-warned the players how these occasions pan out after a game like Friday – yet they didn’t respond to that which is disappointing,” he said.
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“The quality was non-existent. We got a lot of balls into the final third but we lacked quality there. We didn’t have a cutting edge or an end product.
“I don’t think either team deserved to win it. It was a poor game and a poor spectacle. And it was a poor goal to concede, deflected in after we had set up for a throw-in to us the referee had given which the 4th official then gave the other way.
“It’s one of those things. We couldn’t have hammered it home any harder than we did. The most disappointing thing was to see some performances that were lacklustre.”
Murray added: “It’s a massive thump back down to earth. Games like Friday do take it out of you emotionally and physically but I am not making any excuses for them.
“We didn’t show our quality tonight – it was hot potato football. The ball kept coming back at us. And we got isolated and didn’t defend as a team.
“This season we have set off on the front foot, got in people’s faces and won the ball high up the pitch.
“Other managers have commented how organised and disciplined we look. We were not that tonight.
“It’s frustrating as it was there to be won. The goal changed the game. The first 15 minutes we had a number of chances, but we were too slow and had no end product.
“In the second half we showed more urgency but still lacked quality.
“If the group were naïve people I could maybe let it ride, but we have some experienced boys in there. We’ve all seen this happen a million times yet we didn’t react.
“The good thing is I know there is a lot more to come from this group. We have shown in spells over the last two weeks what we can do. Now it’s all about consistency.
“If you have days when it’s not going your way, you grind out results. But we have let ourselves down tonight and we’ve let the travelling fans down.”
Murray let his players know exactly how he felt with heated words after the game and their day off has now been cancelled as he has ordered them in for extra sessions ahead of Saturday’s visit of Oxford United.
“I have spoken a lot from the heart in there afterwards and the players will be in at 9am tomorrow, Thursday and Friday and work all day,” he said. “It’s not good enough to turn up at 60 per cent anywhere.
“We have to be at 100 per cent every game, every day to have a chance of being up there in this league.
“If you turn up and go through the motions you will get your pants pulled down. There are some wounded egos in there right now, but they will bounce back and I can’t wait for Saturday.”