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STAGS PREVIEW | Mansfield Town v Stevenage

17th November 2017

Mansfield Town will look to build on their best performance of the season so far when they welcome Stevenage to the One Call Stadium on Saturday.

The Stags moved up to eleventh in Sky Bet League Two last weekend, just two points away from the play-off zone, thanks to a 1-0 victory at Coventry City, Alex MacDonald with the 84th minute winner.

It means Steve Evans' side are now unbeaten in seven matches in all competitions and the manager says it is vital that they use the win at the Ricoh Arena as a springboard.

He told Mansfield 103.2 at Thursday's press conference: "Momentum is a wonderful thing in football and, because of the inconsistencies and results and sometimes performance, we've not been able to get the steam fully loaded in the steam train and away we go.

"We're still finding that we have half of the coal missing at the moment so we need to find some but the consistency is coming, the performances in training are coming and the desire to be in the team has always been there but it's getting greater."

Evans will have centre back Krystian Pearce and midfielder Jacob Mellis available after they sat out the Coventry match through suspension whilst it is hoped that defender David Mirfin and striker Lee Angol have shaken off injuries to also be in contention.

But, top scorer Danny Rose will miss the game due to a one match ban having picked up his fifth yellow card of the season last weekend.

Stevenage come into the encounter on the back of a 1-1 home draw with leaders Notts County but they are desperate to find some form having won only one of their last six league matches.

On loan Aston Villa defender Kevin Toner will be unavailable for selection for the Hertfordshire side as he completes a three-match ban following a sending off against Yeovil Town whilst highly-rated youngster Ben Kenney is out for six weeks following an operation on a knee injury.

Saturday's match will be the eleventh meeting, including four in the Conference, between the two sides with honours even at five wins apiece.

But, Stevenage won the last encounter at the One Call Stadium, Pat Hoban netting for the Stags as they went down 2-1 in one of Adam Murray's final games in charge in October 2016.

Only three of the team that started that match are still at the club - Rhys Bennett, Mal Benning and Krystian Pearce - whilst Danny Rose and Jack Thomas came off the bench and CJ Hamilton was an unused substitute.

Possible Stags XI: Logan; White, Pearce, Diamond, Hunt; Anderson, MacDonald, Byrom, Hamilton; Spencer, Hemmings. Subs: Olejnik, Mellis, Angol, Sterling-James, Bennett, Potter, Atkinson.


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