Mansfield Town head to Barnet to make things right after manager Adam Murray’s tongue-lashing

Adam Murray.
Adam Murray.

Mansfield Town travel to Barnet on Saturday with the words of manager Adam Murray still ringing in their ears.

The Stags boss lashed his side for what he saw as their worst performance since he took over just over a year ago when they crashed 2-0 at home to Exeter City on Tuesday night.

Murray was furious with his side’s lack of passion and said they made playing football look to be ‘a chore’.

He also accused them of ‘turning up and expecting Exeter to roll over’ at the end of a game in which they failed to bring one meaningful save out of the visiting keeper all night.

It was a far cry from the form they showed last Saturday in beating Hartlepool United 3-1.

Apart from defenders Nicky Hunt (hamstring), Corbin Shires (knee), Mal Benning (knee) and striker Chris Beardsley (shin), Murray has a fully-fit squad to choose from.

This will be the first time the sides have crossed swords since that fateful relegation season of 2007/08 when Michael Boulding and Matt Hamshaw had the Stags in front before second half strikes from Barnet’s Anthony Thomas and Adam Birchall levelled the match at 2-2 and saw Mansfield drop what proved to be two vital points.

Mansfield have the slightly better of the head-to-head record with seven wins to Barnet’s six, with nine draws.

Barnet will be without defender Andy Yiadom who has been handed a one-match ban after picking up his fifth yellow card of the season in their midweek loss at Notts County.

Goalkeeper Graham Stack (groin) remains a long-term absentee whilst defender Bira Dembele (knee) is also definitely out. Striker Kevin Lisbie could also return, having missed the last two games due to a hamstring problem.

Having put together a three-match winning streak against Oxford, Exeter and Blackpool in the Emirates FA Cup, Barnet have failed to win any of their last three games.

But it was an entertaining affair at Meadow Lane on Tuesday when the Bees were defeated 4-2 by Notts County, and currently lie in 18th position.