Jim Bentley’s Morecambe can secure League Two survival at Mansfield

Aaron Collins celebrates putting Morecambe in front against Grimsby Town last weekend
Aaron Collins celebrates putting Morecambe in front against Grimsby Town last weekend
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Morecambe head to Mansfield Town this afternoon knowing that a victory will guarantee them League Two football for another year.

Last Saturday’s point against Grimsby Town saw the Shrimps 19th in the table, 10 points clear of the bottom two with four games remaining.

It was overshadowed somewhat after Morecambe manager Jim Bentley criticised a minority of the club’s fans.

The Shrimps had been within minutes of claiming a sixth victory in 11 games after taking a late lead through Aaron Collins’ penalty.

However, Charles Vernam’s equaliser with injury-time looming meant the spoils were shared and that safety was not guaranteed.

If they are to down a Mansfield side sitting in the final automatic place, then Bentley acknowledged there cannot be a repeat of last Saturday’s performance.

“I thought we started quite brightly,” Bentley said.

“Some of our football was good and there was a couple of half-chances but they tested our keeper more than we tested theirs.

“Second half, it didn’t get going for either side for the first 10 or 15 minutes.

“A couple of changes lifted us a bit and we got the penalty –whether it was or it wasn’t we’ll take it.

“They made a tactical change and moved to three at the back which caught us on the hop a bit.”

Five wins and three draws in the last 11 games have moved the Shrimps to a position of relative comfort but nobody will be allowed to slacken off.

“I want to win every game and be safe as soon as possible,” Bentley said.

“We’re looking forward to the next game because we’re on a little unbeaten run and I’m pleased with that.”