Despite being a regular target for the boo boys last season, Mansfield Town midfielder Adam Chapman had nothing but rich praise for the Stags fans and the noise they drummed up last night to help their 10-man side beat Yeovil 1-0 against the odds.
Chapman suffered badly at the hands of a section of the crowd last season but has been in fine form so far this season and said: “It is just about constantly being together.
Click HERE to see video highlights of the game
“The crowd were brilliant tonight. They got right behind us. As soon as we came out for that second half we started well and that was it. They were with us until the end.
“It was just about grinding it down and hoping that with the quality we’ve got on the pitch, which we always have, we could nick a goal.
“It doesn’t matter what my feelings are towards them (the fans) or what their feelings are towards me.
Click HERE to read the match report
Click HERE to read our Lomas on Stags blog on the game
Click HERE to read Adam Murray’s thoughts
Click HERE to see a gallery of pictures of Stags fans in the stands. Can you spot anyone you know?
“For that 90 minutes it doesn’t matter what anybody thinks as long as everyone is on the same page and getting behind each other. That’s all that matters.
“When they get behind us it’s absolutely different class and it really, really does help.”
Stags had to play 82 minutes with 10 men after Danny Rose was shown an early red card for a lunge at Otis Khan and an exhausted Chapman smiled: “I am going to punch his (Danny Rose) head in when I see him.
“Weirdly it was very a enjoyable game. It was disgusting as to the amount of mileage you had to put in, but it was still enjoyable for some reason.
“Even though we were down to 10 men for a long time, apart from the little spells they had, which they were always going to have, I still felt we were the better team and created the better clear-cut chances. And I still felt we were the more dangerous when we did get out and break.
“So in a bit of a sick way it was quite enjoyable. It is all just about sitting in, don’t lose your head, staying calm and don’t chase the game down.
“You know you’re at home and the fans want you to go and chase it. But you’ve just got to talk to each other constantly and help your mate as you’re going to make mistakes.
“You will lose runners, you will lose concentration, you can’t start beating each other up or getting onto each other as you’re going to have to help your mate and he’s going to have to help you.”
The win was a real tonic after being held 1-1 at home by Cheltenham on Saturday.
“We were disappointed on Saturday as we got suckered into playing their kind of game, but we are confident,” said Chapman.
“It is a very confident group and the ability we have in this group is so obvious. It’s just getting the mentality we’ve shown tonight game in, game out.
“No disrespect to the boys that were here last year as I thought we had a great squad and a great group of lads. But I think in certain areas we have just upped that quality a bit more this season. That little brain level has gone up a bit more.
“The tightness in the group was there last year – it’s not like we are a tighter group. But in quality and football brain I think we have gone up a level or two.”
He added: “We’ve got people like Jamie McGuire too. I think the fourth official had to tell him to sit down more than the gaffer as he was on the pitch more than him tonight. You have people like that rooting for you – it’s different class.”
Now Chapman and the rest of the squad must rest their weary limbs ahead of the long haul down to Plymouth on Saturday.
“The next game is always the most important,” he said soon after the final whistle.
“We’ll enjoy tonight but once we wake up in the morning that’s it.
“In fact two hours from now you get your food in, you have a laugh and a joke but then you’ve got to get to bed and rest as the games are coming thick and fast now.
“It’s a big ask to travel down there (Plymouth). They are a good team with a big pitch and we want to go down there and start beating teams like that as we didn’t do that last year.
“We got a lot of good points away against the bigger teams but we didn’t beat many of them. That’s what we need to start doing.”