Mansfield Town prepare for home clash with in-form Bristol Rovers

Adam Murray knows his Mansfield Town side will face a searching examination from in-form Bristol Rovers when they visit on Saturday.
Darrell Clarke - Pic by: Richard ParkesDarrell Clarke - Pic by: Richard Parkes
Darrell Clarke - Pic by: Richard Parkes

Managed by former Stags star Darrell Clarke, Rovers have made a good start to their return to the Football League after only one season in the Conference and, like Stags, have just won three on the bounce, including scoring seven goals in two away wins.

“They are a good team,” said Murray. “I know Clarkey well and he is a good guy.

“He’s done very well obviously to get them back up at the first attempt and they are having a good season.

“So it will be a challenging game for us, but one we will go into with full confidence and go into with momentum. As I keep saying, we don’t fear anyone.

“It’s important we keep that ruthless mindset. We know it’s going to be a tough game – we know we have a group of games coming up now that will be tough – but we go into it knowing we can affect any team in this league and if we keep doing what we are doing and don’t get complacent and sloppy in our ethics, then we will be okay.”

He added: “They have picked up a couple of good away results, so it will be a good game. It will be tight, but we have seen chinks in their armoury and we will be looking to exploit it.”

Murray said this season’s League Two looked set to be the tightest for a while with little between top and bottom.

“I went to watch Notts County v Plymouth yesterday and I think that everyone there would agree Notts dominated but ended up losing, that’s the nature of this league,” said Murray.

“Plymouth have pulled away by three points, but that will be the league this season.

“I can’t see, realistically, anybody that’s going to run away massively with it. I think it will be a league of consistency. It will be tight. There are a lot of good teams.

“I said pre-season, this league will be a lot tougher than it was last year, probably the last couple of years. There will only be a few points difference from top to bottom.

“So it’s important that in games where we are not fully on it, we grind out results and when we can’t win, we draw. We don’t lose. We must keep the belief.

“We need to understand why we are doing things. You need to understand your purpose as purpose is power.”