Town defender Scott Griffiths insists the depth of Town’s squad will shine through in the absence of first-choice centre half pairing Steve McNulty and Luke Wilkinson.
Fraser Franks and Alex Lacey are expected to form a new partnership at Mansfield this evening as Griffiths said: “People are waiting on the sidelines and are really eager to get in the squad. Everyone’s pushing, there’s a lot of good competition, so I don’t think he’d (John Still) find it too hard to find someone willing to step into the shoes of those who are out.
“They’re going to do nothing more than their best in training and games to take it.
“Both (Lacey and Franks) are good players, you can see that from last season. The step up is a difference, but I think they’ve handled it well when they’ve both been on and will continue to handle it well.
“I know they can do a job and hopefully we can keep them on the field for the games that the others players are out.
“With any luck for them, they want to make it as hard as they can for the two players out to get back in.
“Healthy competition is always there and you want to stay in the team.”
Striker Mark Cullen also believes his team-mates will more than cope, as he said: “It’s a great opportunity for Fraser and Lacey to step in and it’s up to them whether they can take that opportunity or not.
“They’re more than capable of playing and doing a really good job so hopefully they can do that.”
Victory could put Town back into third place ahead of Saturday’s trip to AFC Wimbledon, but Griffiths said: “I don’t really look at the table or other people’s results, I just look at ours and hope they go the way we want
“We can’t really do anything about anyone else, to quote the gaffer again, we’ve just got to go out and win our games.
“If we’re good enough and work hard enough, results will come for us.
“We want to be going to both those places and getting results there.
“Three points would be fantastic as we don’t really want to settle for one.
“They’re all going to be hard games, but just as it’s going to be hard for us, it’s going to be hard for the other team, as we’ve got a lot of passion in our team and a lot of ability.”