Midfielder Stefan Scougall covered almost every blade of grass as he helped the Blues to a vital three points on Friday afternoon, as the team jumped back to just one point outside the play-off places.
We spoke to him about the importance of both the result and the performance shortly after full time.
“It was a big win for us,” he said. “With the Exeter result going our way before kick off it gives us a chance of making it into the play-offs. We kind of thought that opportunity might have slipped away because we haven’t really been at it over the last few games.
“There are no easy games in this division and that was the same here. We played a very good Lincoln side and they’re a team that’s already promoted for a reason. It was always going to be a big challenge, but it’s one we overcame.”
On the response from the disappointment of last weekend, he commented: “We started with real intensity because I think the boys had to show the gaffer, and everyone associated with the club, a positive reaction from what happened last week.
“The Stevenage performance was just nowhere near good enough and the manager drilled that into us after the game, and also during training this week.
“We also had it in our minds that we didn’t want Lincoln to win the league on our pitch, but it was mostly about the fact we needed the three points for our reasons.”
The game brought a switch to a role on the right of a midfield three, with Jamie Devitt and Callum O’Hare also part of that attack-minded trio.
“All three of us enjoy playing the number 10 role but, unfortunately, there’s only one of us can do it,” he explained. “We did our jobs well in the way we inter-changed and we all saw plenty of the ball. The tactics were spot on and we bought into what the manager wants us to achieve.
“It was a game we dominated – Mike Jones and Kelvin Etuhu bossed the midfield – and the gaffer even reminded us about the Bury game, when we made it hard for them when we only had ten men. He warned us not to take our foot off the gas during the half time break and eventually we got the three points – thanks to Jona finally getting his first goal!”
A number of good chances had gone begging before Jones smashed home his 76th minute winner, and the influential midfielder admitted that it can start to play on your mind when opportunities aren’t finished off.
“It can start to go that way, yes, but that’s when you have to make sure that you keep pushing all the way up to the final whistle,” he told us. “It was all about the three points because I do think the play-offs would have been out of reach if we hadn’t done it.
“The atmosphere was fantastic and you want to play in that as a player, because it does give you a lift. I was dead on my feet near the end but when the fans are shouting like that it generates more energy for you.
“It erupted when the goal went in, which was brilliant. It was roasting hot out there and I think that put the fans in a great mood as well. There was almost a feeling of relief when we scored and it’s got us all believing again, which is the most important thing.
“Even after we scored we were looking for more goals because we know goal difference could come into play. That’s why we want to improve ours. We’ve just beaten one of the best sides in the league so we have to think we can do this now.
“The important thing is that we take it into Monday. If we don’t then it means that, in a way, this result becomes almost pointless. That’s why we have to go there and do it properly.
“Our downfall this season has not been doing it against teams below us. That just hasn’t been good enough. Something seems to click when we play the teams at the top, but we need to make sure we’re doing that in every game.
“It has to happen over the next three games because we’ve got a big chance of making the play-offs. If we win on Monday we can look at the last two fixtures and really start to think about getting it done. Hopefully that’s what we’ll do.”
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