Leeds United youngster Conor Shaughnessy has warned his loan side Mansfield Town against complacency tomorrow as they take on Chorley of the National League.
The Stags have struggled to mount the expected promotion challenge in League Two and were beaten at home by Colchester this weekend. manager John Dempster has the backing of CEO Carolyn Radford, but defeat against minnows in the FA Cup would surely weaken his position.
Shaughnessy, who spent time with Hearts in the SPFL last season, who has ten League Two starts to his name but is well aware of the threat posed by the underdogs at Field Mill.
“Anything can happen in the cup, so we won’t be taking it lightly at all. We want to win,” he told the Mansfield Chad.
“Heart, desire and endeavour from us is the minimum expected from us. If we get that right we know our quality will show with the ball and it should go our way. It will be a tough game and they will put up a really strong fight. I am sure it will be a physical game.
“We just have to start it well and pass the ball well. We are expected to get the result as we’re in the league above, but at the same time, it’s the cup so we won’t be thinking it’s an easy game.”
The 23-year-old was part of the Whites’ squad humbled by Newport County two years ago and he warns against underestimating the quality of lower league opposition.
“I think we might have under-estimated Newport a little bit. We played them away and it was a tough ground to go to. We controlled the majority of the game but little things cost us. It was a big upset.
“Everyone ups their game, especially against teams from leagues above you. So we’re going to have to be ready for that on Saturday.”
The Irishman made ten starts for Hearts in the SPFL and has looked calm and assured in his outings for the Stags.
The youngster knows all about the threat of a giant-killing; manager Thomas Christiansen didn’t last much longer after that defeat and if Chorley were to humble Mansfield it might increase the pressure on John Dempster.
There are good reasons to underestimate their opponents though; Chorley are bottom of the National League with just one win to their name in the league all season.
They’re surely there for the taking and anything less than a Mansfield win would be beyond embarrassing for the manager and perhaps as much of a shock as Newport provided when they beat Leeds.