Mansfield Town manager Adam Murray was delighted with his side’s discipline and stamina in tonight’s 1-0 home pre-season friendly defeat by Premier League new boys Hull City.
Jarrod Bowen scored the only goal on 55 minutes as the Tigers increasingly tested Murray’s League Two squad and he said: “It was exactly what we expected when you come up against that standard of opposition.
“The work-out tonight was designed for fitness and thinking at the same time.
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“When you work hard and you physically go, you mentally go as well. So we wanted to test those boundaries tonight and make sure that when the boys got tired, we kept our discipline and kept our organisation.
“We used it as a shape session and we got exactly that out of it. It was a great work-out for us in terms of the organisational side of things and it proves a point that if you switch off for that split second against good players then you get punished.
“I felt at times tonight we were really good with the ball. But when you come up against Premier League opposition like that, it’s hard to take that fear factor out of it.”
Murray added: “Sometimes when we did win the ball back we’ve got good enough players to hurt any team, and I think we could have done that a little bit more.
“I am really chuffed with the work-out and we move on to the next one.” Stags fielded two trialists tonight with an accomplished-looking left back completing the game and a big target man playing the second half.
“It was two balanced, separate performances, so we will have a look at them for the rest of the week and then we’ll make a decision on them,” he said.
On being able to add to his squad ahead of the big kick-off, Murray said: “We’d have to speak to the powers that be, but we have 20 players that can push for a shirt, the rest are kids, and I think it’s shown in pre-season that if you do take a slight couple of injuries, you’re down to bare bones straight away.
“Sometimes you’ve got to have that cover to keep you strong, especially with the windows next year.
“I think 21 would be more comfortable.”