Mansfield manager John Dempster could barely conceal his pride after his first win as a boss came at the same ground he made his Football League debut in 2002.
After starting their league campaign with two draws, Dempster’s team eased past a flat Carlisle side 2-0 at Brunton Park thanks to first-half goals from Danny Rose and Nicky Maynard.
Dempster said: “It was 18 years ago I made my league debut here and today is my first league win as a manager. I’m proud of the players.
“It’s something I will remember for the rest of my life, but it’s about the players today. All 18 who were selected for the squad gave everything they’ve got and they deserved it.”
Dempster enthused that his side had given him a “perfect” away performance and said: “We had a game-plan and the players were outstanding today.
“The leadership qualities and game management side were a joy to watch. I like to see the gritty side of the game and we saw that in abundance.
“The squad has goals in it, but they can also get clean sheets.”
The Stags’ manager had special praise for Rose, who scored his third goal in as many games.
“The finish was top-drawer, a striker with confidence and freedom. But he also got back to head three or four balls away in our box and did his job defensively as well.”
Speaking about the second goal, scored on the stroke of half time by Maynard, Dempster added: “It was the old sniffer dog producing a very aware finish. It was a trademark goal by Nicky.”
Apart from a couple of early efforts from Nathan Thomas, and a rushed finish by Harry McKirdy, Carlisle created little in front of goal and even the introduction of newly signed on-loan Newcastle forward Elias Sorensen had little impact.
Chances for both sides were scarce in a scrappy second half although the visitors were able to see out the contest in relative security.
Carlisle manager Steven Pressley said: “The players that can make a difference didn’t do it today.
“Mansfield had two attacks and scored. The way they set up was a sign of respect they showed us.They adopted tactics to frustrate us and I’m disappointed with the goals we gave away.
“We didn’t create enough. I can’t fault the effort or application, but the quality was not there.
“We have got to defend better and we didn’t make our possession pay. We spent most of the second half in their half and finished with four strikers on the pitch, but it was not enough. We could not find that creative moment.
“We came off the pitch at half-time thinking, ‘how are we losing this 2-0.’ We huffed and puffed but didn’t manage to carve out chances that might change the game.”