SHEFFIELD UNITED PREVIEWS
Bruised Stags tread carefully with cup side selection
chad.co.uk, 12 August 2014
Stags skipper and assistant manager Adam Murray said a few knocks from Saturday may see them having to make some changes for tomorrow night’s Capital One Cup first round tie at League One neighbours Sheffield United.
But Murray said they would send out the strongest team they could with one eye on Saturday’s League Two home opener against Oxford United.
One player definitely out is Ollie Palmer, the striker undergoing a full assessment later today on an ankle injury from Saturday’s opening day 1-0 defeat at Northampton that is expected to sideline him for two or three weeks.
But Murray said there were other players feeling the effects of Saturday who may struggle to play tomorrow.
Mansfield, who could take over 1,000 fans to Bramall Lane, go into the tie as clear underdogs.
“We know it’s going to be a tough game for us,” said Murray. “We are not stupid. We are going there against a huge club from a higher division so we are going to be up against it.
“With a smaller squad we have got to be careful of injuries and suspensions.
“We have a lot of bumps and bruises we have to be careful of. We won’t hide the fact that the League has to be our priority. We have got to have Saturday in mind and consider if we can risk certain players for the cup game.
“But this is still a game of football we want to get something out of and we won’t just roll over and die. We want to win every game and we won’t turn up there thinking it’s not important. That’s not going to happen.
“We will have a good number of fans there. These games are nice for the fans as it gives them the chance to visit some decent grounds and big clubs and see their team up against that sort of opposition.
“We want to put on a performance we hope our fans will be proud of and leave the ground knowing we put in a right good shift for them.”
Murray said a players’ meeting had been very productive yesterday and he felt very positive about the season, despite some fans’ reaction to Saturday’s narrow opening defeat.
“Obviously we’ve lost a football match so it wasn’t the outcome we wanted,” said Murray. “But, after watching it back three or four times, there were a lot of positives to come out of it.
“After pre-season had gone so well, to go from that high to losing a game, some people have reacted with disappointment and it’s like the end of the world for some of them. But we move on.
“We had a team meeting yesterday which was really productive. The lads spoke their minds and a lot of opinions came out in a good way.
“We did have enough chances in the game to win it and, at times, we showed what were all about. We imposed ourselves on the game. But as the game went on we lost our shape a bit and our discipline wasn’t as good as it should have been. But we were chasing the game.
“We have a lot of new players and young lads out there and they need time to settle and gel.”
Having sold out of their initial alloaction, Mansfield have been given 300 more tickets for the game.
But they must be bought in advance from One Call Stadium. The game is all-ticket and none will be available on the night.
Murray will take Northampton positives in to cup tie
mansfieldtown.net, 12th August 2014
Stags’ captain/assistant manager Adam Murray believes there are plenty of positives to take in to tomorrow’s cup tie against Sheffield United from Saturday’s loss at Northampton Town.
Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/murray-will-take-northampton-positives-in-to-cup-tie-1823005.aspx#m57hgPyxcOLoGSUC.99
Speaking at this morning's pre-match press conference, Murray said: “There were a lot of productive things said in the team meeting yesterday, and everybody is on the same page,”
Looking forward to the Capital One Cup tie at Brammall Lane tomorrow, Murray said: “We’re going to [play] a huge club in a higher division, so we’ve got to be realistic about the game that we’re facing but it’s ninety minutes of football that we’ll be looking to get something out of, and most importantly build on the good bits that we took out of Saturday.
“After the expectations which pre-season set, it was a crash down to reality on Saturday and a realisation of the challenge we face this season.
“We have a lot of new players, the majority being young who hold heaps of potential. These boys need a little patience and time to gel and when this is done I believe this will be a real bonus to our ongoing development."
The last time the two sides met was back in 1989 in the old Third Division with the Stags running out 2-1 winners at Bramall Lane.
With regard to team selection, Murray kept his cards quite close to his chest, however he did admit that Ollie Palmer will undergo a fitness test tomorrow after he picked up a knock on Saturday.
“Ollie turned his ankle during Saturday’s game. He will continue treatment over the next 24 hours and will be assessed again tomorrow.”
The Blades themselves are nursing a couple of injuries following their opening day defeat to Bristol City, with defender Robert Harris and 23-year-old midfielder James Wallace both facing a race against time to be fit for the visit of Paul Cox's men.
Sheff Utd v Mansfield preview
Team news ahead of Wednesday's Capital One Cup clash between Sheffield United and Mansfield Town at Bramall Lane.
Michael Doyle and Neill Collins are expected to start for Sheffield United in their Capital One Cup clash with Mansfield.
The pair were on the bench for Saturday's 2-1 defeat at home to Bristol City and could now be given some game time as Nigel Clough makes changes.
Striker Michael Higdon, who opened his account for the Blades at the weekend, is expected to be rested for the first-round tie and fellow summer signing James Wallace is again likely to miss out as he continues to struggle with a groin injury.
The former Everton and Tranmere midfielder is edging closer to a return, but Clough will not rush him and believes the Stags clash may come too soon.
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