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Jackson previews league opener at Mansfield

11 September 2020

Tranmere manager Mike Jackson has insisted that team spirit will hold the key to a successful season in Sky Bet League Two this campaign. 

Rovers’ 2020/21 league schedule gets underway at Mansfield Town on Saturday afternoon as Jackson goes in search of a first three points of his Tranmere tenure. 

The Rovers’ boss has already experienced promotion from the fourth tier with the Club in 2018/19 and explained what will be required from the team to replicate this achievement.  

Jackson said: “The biggest thing, for me, is that whenever I’ve ever had a team that has done well in League Two, there has been team spirit. That has always been the case. 

“On top of that, you need that sprinkling of talent, you need to be good in both 18-yard boxes at this level and good at set-plays. That never changes. But the biggest thing for me is that team spirit. I know you can say that’s easy, but it’s not. That is the hardest thing to get and the easiest thing to lose. You need talented players within that to be able to bring you forward and people who can deal with setbacks as well, because you will get them along the way. You will get ups and downs, but can the group deal with those setbacks? That’s our job, collectively, to be able to do that in games.” 

Cup matches versus Harrogate Town and Port Vale have provided the Tranmere manager with a clear indication of progress that has been made by the squad, while Saturday’s showdown with the Stags will act as another opportunity to execute training ground tactics.

“I’ve learned that it’s a squad that is working for each other, wants to improve all the time and be part of something. I know the areas where we need to improve, which have been well-documented,” expressed Jackson. 

“We’ve had these last two games against Harrogate and Port Vale, and you see the intensity levels go up. You get a good feel for the group, fitness-wise, and the stuff you’ve been working on in training. They have been good games for us, in terms of: fitness, working with the group, working on things we need to improve at and things we’ve been doing well.” 

On Saturday’s opponents, Jackson added: “There has been quite a bit of investment at Mansfield, they’ve been going for promotion the last couple of years. I know their manager very well; I played with him and know his strengths and weaknesses. We’re really looking forward to the game. We know the way they play; we’ve just got to make sure we do what we do and work from there constantly.” 

Mike’s full pre-match thoughts and further exclusive video content is available on iFollow. CLICK HERE to sign up and watch. 

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