Ahead of Saturday's Sky Bet League Two fixture against Mansfield Town, Phil Wallace addresses Stevenage supporters in the Digital Matchday Programme...
Good afternoon and welcome to the players and officials of Mansfield Town.
Well, where to begin. The strong performances at MK Dons and at home to Cambridge on Tuesday night have set the tone for what we need to do going forwards, following a very tough run of results in the league.
As an owner, since you cannot change the players mid-window, you have to make the difficult decision as to whether you believe the management can deliver wins. The inquest into why the run of defeats happened in the first place is for another time.
First Team Coach Mark Sampson gave us his notice on Friday, which was accepted, and we moved Ronnie Henry up on Monday to fill that gap temporarily. What Ronnie lacks in coaching experience, he makes up for with a winning mentality and I believe we are stronger as a group for that.
Alex and I have had a series of conversations and we both know how football works. It is beyond debate that our league results are unacceptable to all of us, and the manner of the last four league defeats made it clear something was very wrong. I think the performances on Saturday and Tuesday showed that there is a new spirit in the camp, and the players know they need to do more - much more - to deliver winning football for the fans. When your back is against the wall in any industry, you need warriors in your camp. Mental as much as physical.
I think we saw that stronger mentality over the last two performances, but especially on Tuesday night. There was a change in the way we played, in the way we tackled and in the aggressive way we attacked their goal. It was only 1-0 but it was convincing. These lads obviously know they have let the management down over the past few months – and I suspect the management know they have let the players down. So, we go into today’s game, followed by a FA Cup replay and another home league game with a different, stronger mentality and a clearer picture of what is needed to get wins. This group of players are highly talented, and we should not be at this end of the table. Not only do we have a job to do against Mansfield, but we have a job to do in every successive league game to climb the table.
In situations like this, there are only two choices. Support the lads and management vocally and urge them on to win or turn against them. I believe we have turned a corner, that we have learnt a lesson and that we are about to see a team that will excite and entertain you in a winning way.
Let’s get behind them, give them a chance and get The Lamex rocking again!
Enjoy the game.
- Phil Wallace
- Please click here to view or download the Stevenage vs Mansfield Town Digital Matchday Programme in full.
Match tickets for Stevenage vs Mansfield Town are now available from www.borotickets.co.uk.