STAGS BAR­REN RUN IS ENDED!

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE TWO - By Tim Mor­riss

DE­LIGHTED Mans­field boss Steve Evans in­sisted he had no doubt the Stags would fi­nally end their goal drought af­ter a first win in five matches, sparked by hit­ting the net for the first time in 438 min­utes, reignited their play-off hopes.

Matt Green’s cush­ioned header and Shaq Coulthirst’s in­di­vid­ual ef­fort in the sec­ond half sent Carlisle to a fifth de­feat in six matches to fur­ther dent their au­to­matic pro­mo­tion am­bi­tions and leave the Cum­bri­ans with­out a goal for 596 min­utes.

Evans said: “As a manger you have to be­lieve the goals will come.

“We have got play­ers who can score at this level, but they were go­ing through a spell when they were miss­ing the sim­plest of chances.

“We needed to get the first goal here to get a bit of con­fi­dence.

“But the sup­port­ers would have been shak­ing their heads again at half-time that we weren't in front.

“Danny Rose has a great in­stinc­tive vol­ley and it hits the goal­keeper on the shoul­der when he’s go­ing the other way. You think here we go again.

“I'm pleased for Green as he missed a cou­ple of big chances at Colch­ester in mid­week and took a lot of crit­i­cism.

“But I stuck with him and it was a fan­tas­tic header.

“Coulthirst has got that in his locker.

“He cut in and the goal­keeper didn't move. It was a won­der­ful fin­ish.”

Rhys Ben­nett, Coulthirst, Rose, Malvind Ben­ning and sub­sti­tute CJ Hamil­ton should have scored be­fore Green headed in his 13th goal of the sea­son from a ter­rific 63rd­minute cross by the twist­ing Coulthirst.

And 13 min­utes later Coulthirst went from goal cre­ator to goalscorer with a fine in­di­vid­ual ef­fort.

He bam­boo­zled two play­ers on the edge of the area be­fore curling into the bot­tom cor­ner.

Carlisle rarely looked like end­ing their own long search for a goal.

Shaun Miller lobbed onto the roof of the net in the first half and Shaun Bris­ley headed a sec­ond-half cross nar­rowly wide.

United boss Keith Curle said: “We will come again. At the minute we are be­ing slapped left and right, and rightly so, be­cause we are not do­ing the sim­ple things well enough.

“It is a very sim­ple game and when you don’t do the sim­ple things well you haven’t got a plat­form and a foun­da­tion to build on.

“So it is back to ba­sics for us. We don’t look like scor­ing goals be­cause we are not putting the ball in the right ar­eas or re­tain­ing pos­ses­sion in the fi­nal third.

“We gave our­selves prob­lems by al­low­ing them to get on the front foot through not putting the ball into ar­eas that would have caused them prob­lems.

“We are try­ing to force play in wrong ar­eas.”

PIC­TURES: Dan West­well

BAT­TLE: Kyle Howkins and Michael Raynes, tus­sle. In­set, Danny Rose is sub­sti­tuted STAR MAN DANNY ROSE Mans­field

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