BLAIR OUT FOR THE SEASON / SMITH TO RETURN TO LEIC
Boss 'devastated' to lose winger for season
mansfieldtown.net, 3rd February 2015
Manager Adam Murray says he is devastated to lose winger Matty Blair for the rest of the season.
Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/boss-devasated-to-lose-winger-for-season-2246150.aspx#WzwdyVH6RsTaIgpq.99
Manager Adam Murray revealed at a news conference this afternoon that winger Matty Blair will be out for the rest of the season after scan results revealed a cruciate knee ligament injury.
The 25-year-old was stretchered off in the second half in Saturday’s 2-1 defeat at Carlisle United after falling awkwardly.
The Stags boss said: “We feel like we have run over about eight black cats at the minute.
“Matty will be out for six to nine months. It’s devastating for me as manager, the rest of the lads, but most importantly the boy himself. He has come in and has been a breath of fresh air and for such a nothing incident we are losing one of our ‘x factor players’.”
“Matty is gutted. Obviously, he hasn’t taken it well but you wouldn’t expect anybody to. As a person, he is a great bloke and a true professional and he’ll be somebody who will be back sooner rather than later.”
Blair blow as Stags’ week of misery goes on
chad.co.uk, 03 February 2015
After sinking into the bottom two for the first time since promotion back to the Football League on Saturday, Mansfield Town’s week of misery continued as they today found out they have lost new star signing Matty Blair for the rest of the season with a serious knee injury.
Winger Blair will miss six to nine months after a scan revealed he had damaged his cruciate ligament in an innocuous challenge in the devastating 2-1 defeat at relegations rivals Carlisle United.
Stags at least shored up at the back before Monday’s transfer window deadline passed with the arrival of experienced Newport County keeper Lenny Pidgeley.
But ahead of Saturday’s visit of Stevenage, the mood was a sombre one as boss Adam Murray said: “It’s not good news. It feels like we have run over about eight black cats at the moment.
“Matty has done his cruciate and will be out six to nine months. It is devastating for him but also for me as a manager and for the lads.
“We will miss him. Matty has been like a breath of fresh air since he arrived. And everyone knows what he brings to the table.
“For such a nothing incident, we are losing one of our X-factors, though we still have a number of them in the squad.
“We are all going to have to pull together and dig deep. Maybe this will fire us up to work harder.
“Matty is gutted. He hasn’t taken it very well, but you wouldn’t expect anyone to.
“As a person, he is a great, great bloke. He is a true pro who I know will be back sooner rather than later.”
Murray added: “We are going to have to look at our options as we are quite low in numbers, and the loan window opens next week.
“We need to end this spell of not picking up results. We need to turn good performances into wins.
“That may mean we have got to go a bit more into battle mode. We may have to pick a more gritty side for certain games.
“My overall philosophy of the way we want to play may have to take a hit because of the situation we are in as the bottom line has to be points.
“But I have never shirked a battle in my life and we will fight on.”
Stags face a crucial February with six games of which four are at the One Call where the home fans can make a huge difference.
However, Murray said: “The bottom line is the players have to do it on the pitch.
“That is the most important thing. They have to give supporters something to shout about.”
Stags have only won once in 11 games, but Murray said: “The biggest thing for me is that we have got a hell of a lot of football still to play. It’s not as if we are going into five games left in this situation.
“There are 19 games left and 57 points to play for. We have some good players in that dressing room and they are a frame of mind prepared for battle.”
Stags do welcome back Chris Clements from illness and John Dempster after injury into the squad for Saturday’s visit of eighth-placed Stevenage who, after a great run of five wins and draw in six games, have just lost two on the bounce.
On Tuesday Mansfield then head north again to take on 11th-placed Morecambe, who draw all five games in January.
twitter 4 Feb 2014
Matty Blair @MattyBlair17
Thank you all for the best wishes tweets. Really do appreciate them all, be back before you know it.
Smith set to return to Leicester
mansfieldtown.net, 3rd February 2015
Goalkeeper Adam Smith will return to parent club Leicester City when his loan expires at midnight on Saturday.
Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/smith-set-to-return-to-leicester-2246124.aspx#MmM5ov48Vu0hY215.99
The 23-year-old has made four starts for us in between the sticks since making the switch from the King Power Stadium last month.
Manager Adam Murray said: "Adam has been quality in his performances and I believe he will be somebody who will go on to play in the Premier League.
"We need that little bit of experience in there and we have spoke to Leicester, who have been superb with us about Adam and Callum [Elder].
It follows yesterday's signing of goalkeeper Lenny Pidgeley who joined the club on loan until the end of the season from Newport County.
Pidgeley experience could be invaluable for Stags’ survival, says boss Murray
chad.co.uk, 03 February 2015
Adam Murray believes the experience of former Chelsea keeper Lenny Pidgeley will prove invaluable in Mansfield Town’s relegation battle.
Stags signed Pidgeley on loan from Newport County until the end of the season as the transfer window deadline approached on Monday night.
That meant on-loan keeper Adam Smith has now returned to Leicester City.
The 30-year-old Pidgeley, an ex-England youth international, boasts tremendous experience having racked up over 250 appearances in his career.
Manager Adam Murray said: “First and foremost Lenny is a very good goalkeeper. It is an area we have looked at over the last few months.
“In my eyes since we lost Mazza (Alan Marriott) we haven’t really filled that spot in terms of an experienced figure, an organiser or someone with nous.
“With the situation we are in we feel an experienced head back there would play a massive part.
“Look at Newport. Everyone knows they have a strong, organised set-up and are hard to break down. Lenny has behind 99 per cent of that.
“He is a good signing for us and will also help to develop Sascha (Studer).”
Pidgeley’s arrival means loanee Adam Smith will this week return to Leicester City.
“Adam Smith is someone who will go on and play in the Premier League and is very highly thought of at Leicester,” said Murray.
“But our situation dictated the kind of action we have taken. He has been quality in his performances but we just need that bit of experience.
“Leicester have been superb with us with the way they have helped us with Adam Smith and Callum Elder and I’d like to thank them for the backing they’ve given us.
“Callum’s loan ends on Saturday and we would like to try to extend that. He’s been superb since he’s been come in. he is really highly thought of at Leicester and in football in general. We are very lucky to have him and if we can keep hold of him we aim to do that.
“With Smithy going back we have one loan space left and realistically we have to keep that open for the moment.
“We have had some injury news that isn’t good with Matty Blair so we are in a situation and will have to see where it goes.”
Murray is pleased that, having done most of his business in the first week of the transfer window - Stags being one of the busiest clubs in the country - they are ahead of other clubs in having new players settle in.
“Looking at the window this week, teams were signing two, three, four players,” he said.
“But we did all our business early doors to allow this team time to gel. They have now had four games together and are finding their feet as individuals and as a group, getting to know each other.
“Those teams are now going to have to start that gelling process as well.”
No playing return for Murray
Mansfield Town boss Adam Murray has dismissed calls for him to pull on his boots and join the relegation fight.
Some fans have been suggesting he should play again via social media.
But Murray said: “I won’t be coming back into the side.
“I find it quite funny. In football people flitter from opinion to opinion. When I was out the team people would say ‘we are missing Adam Murray and need him back’ then five games in they’d be saying my legs had gone.
“I have good players in the team. I have got leaders.
“John Dempster is now fully back in the squad, too, which is a massive boost.”
Mansfield Town have 'the stomach' for a relegation fight, says Adam Murray
Nottingham Post, by Sarah Clapson, February 04, 2015
Mansfield Town boss Adam Murray is confident his players "have the stomach" for a relegation fight.
Read more: http://www.nottinghampost.com/Mansfield-Town-stomach-relegation-fight-says-Adam/story-25970582-detail/story.html?#ixzz3QnZKiPV3
Saturday's 2-1 defeat at Carlisle saw the Stags drop into the relegation zone for the first time since their promotion back to the Football League.
They have just two wins from their last 18 games, both achieved with Murray at the helm. He has revamped his squad in the transfer window, though results have still proved hard to come by and Mansfield gave a lacklustre second half display at Brunton Park.
"They have no choice; if they don't have the stomach for the battle then they won't be on the battlefield," said the manager.
"The frustrating thing for me is I think we went through the motions at certain points in the game on Saturday, and then when we did have the game in our court, we weren't ruthlessness enough to hold on to it.
"It's tough. I won't lie to you, it's tough. We're putting a lot of hours in. We're doing things professionally and the way we think things should be done but we're not getting the results at the minute.
"It's my job to keep the group buoyant and keep them focused on the task ahead.
"We've got 57 points to play for. We've got a target of points we need to hit to stay in the Football League and that's all our focus can be on.
"We can't come off the path of our work-rate and the information we're putting in because that would be criminal. We've all got to step up to the plate."
Asked how falling into the bottom two would affect things, Murray said: "We've got to work even harder.
"We've got a fight on. We knew the fight we had on our hands all along. We need to produce results.
"We're back at home this week (against Stevenage) and we need to put it right."
The Stags were leading through Vadaine Oliver's header before a ten-minute collapse saw them concede twice to Carlisle. Sloppy goals have cost them of late, with set-pieces proving a problem - and it was a bad habit which reared its head again as the Cumbrians levelled with a free-kick.
"We've led games and given stupid goals away," said Murray. "We've actually given teams points; they haven't taken them off us, we've given them.
"It's thoroughly disappointing and this group has to pick itself up again quickly because we've got a lot of work to do; and we need to get it done as quick as we can."
MANSFIELD Town winger Matty Blair (pictured) will miss the rest of the season after suffering a cruciate knee ligament injury.
Blair was stretchered during the defeat to Carlisle United on Saturday and scans revealed the damage is as serious as first feared.
Murray said: "We feel like we have run over about eight black cats at the minute.
"Matty will be out for six to nine months. It's devastating for me as manager, the rest of the lads, but most importantly the boy himself. He has come in and has been a breath of fresh air and for such a nothing incident we are losing one of our 'X Factor players'."
"Matty is gutted. Obviously, he hasn't taken it well but you wouldn't expect anybody to. As a person, he is a great bloke and a true professional and he'll be somebody who will be back sooner rather than later."
Goalkeeper Adam Smith will return to Leicester City when his loan ends after Saturday's game against Stevenage.
Latest | February 2015