MURRAY, COLLINS, SHAUN DERRY REACTION
Murray thanks players for effort during season
mansfieldtown.net, 7th May 2016
Stags' boss Adam Murray has thanked the Mansfield Town squad for what he describes as a ‘very good’ season which has seen the club finish in the top half of Sky Bet League 2.
The Stags were held to a 0-0 draw against Cambridge United at One Call Stadium this afternoon, meaning they end the campaign in 12th position.
And after being involved in a relegation dogfight last season, Murray has reflected positively on a progressive year.
“I think it’s been a very good season, I think we’re fine lines away from being an excellent team. From where we’ve come from in a short space of time, it’s a credit to the footballers because they’re the ones that have carried it out,” Murray said.
Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/murray-post-cambridge-3100483.aspx#ULgtYhh58lFVFSli.99
“We’ll see how to get better and we’ll see the ingredients we can get in to make us better. The team spirit and fight of this group has been the strength for 12 months. I thank them and I’m proud of every single one of them.”
The 34-year-old manager was satisfied with a better second half showing from his team, while he also gave praise to 17-year-old academy graduate Zayn Hakeem, who came on as a substitute to make his senior debut.
“[In] the first half, we looked a little bit ‘last game of the season-ish’. Then I thought in the second half we upped the tempo and the standard and probably did enough to win the game.
“I thought he (Hakeem) was excellent, we had to throw him an energy gel within about ten minutes of him coming on! I remember that moment myself [in my own career] and I was actually sick after ten minutes of being on because it drains everything out of you.
“He’s a goalscorer, but I thought his hold-up play was top drawer - he’s as quick as Greeny (Matt Green) which is a good asset, so [I’m] really pleased for him.”
Murray also commented on the future of defender Ryan Tafazolli, who he believes has played his last game for the club, despite wanting him to stay.
“I don’t know the facts. My gut feeling is that he’ll probably move on - if I’m being honest I thought Lee (Collins) and Pearcey (Krystian Pearce) were superb in the second half.
“‘Taf’ has been brilliant for this football club, he’s put a right shift in and if he decides to move on, the chairman can’t do any more than he’s done.
“He just wants to play as high as he possibly can and my opinion [is that] he’d gain more from playing another season in League 2 and becoming the best defender in League 2, because he’s still got a lot to work on.”
Murray has also outlined his plans for the upcoming weeks, which includes sorting out the ‘retained list’ of who will remain at the Stags for the 2016-17 campaign.
“I’m not going to mess about with it (the retained list). We’ve got a couple that we need to ‘cross the t’s and dot the I’s’ as they say. [It’s] time to switch my brain off first and foremost, I’ve not had a day off for going on 19 months.”
Finally, the gaffer has a message for supporters looking ahead to the next few months without league football, as he prepares to put a squad together to improve further in the 2016-17 campaign.
“Enjoy your summer. I’ll have three or four days before I’m ready to go again, I know that’s what the football world’s like. We want to rest but then we want to ‘kick back in’.
“I think the fans have been superb this season - I think they’ve been excited at times, we’ve had some good results where we’ve nicked last-minute goals. We’ve battered our local rivals a couple of times, which always helps! Now it’s up to us to keep them smiling - a big ‘thank you’ [goes to them] and get ready to do it again next year!”
Supporters can watch Adam Murray’s post-match interview on Stags Player HD.
Stags boss Murray fears star defender Tafazolli will move on
chad.co.uk, by John Lomas, Saturday 07 May 2016
Mansfield Town boss Adam Murray admitted his gut feeling is that star centre half Ryan Tafazolli will leave the club this summer.
Tafazolli limped out of today’s 0-0 final home draw with Cambridge United at half-time, and fans were left wondering if they will ever see him in a Mansfield shirt again.
The Stags have put together the best package they can offer to their out-of-contract defender, but Murray knows offers will come in they can’t match.
“I can’t give a factual answer as I don’t know the facts, but my gut feeling is, yes, he will probably move on,” said Murray.
Read more: http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/mansfield-town/mansfield-town-news/stags-boss-murray-fears-star-defender-tafazolli-will-move-on-1-7898780#ixzz480e8Hum1
“But I though Lee Collins and Krystian Pearce were superb second half, so there are a lot of good footballers out there.
“Taff has been brilliant for this football club and he’s put a right shift in. If he decides to move on, the chairman can’t do any more to put a deal together for him.
“It’s one of the best deals I’ve seen and fair play to the club for doing that.
“Ultimately he has to make a decision. Taff is not someone who is financially driven. He just wants to play as high as he possibly can.
“In my opinion he’d gain more from playing another season in League Two and becoming the division’s best defender. He still has a lot to work on. But he is ambitious and has a lot of drive.
“If he gets a contract elsewhere, fair play, we can’t do any more.”
On the game, Murray said: “It was a battle. I thought first half we looked a little ‘last game of the season-ish’ and sluggish.
“Then I thought second half we upped the tempo and our standards and probably did enough to win the game.
“I was pleased overall. It was another game unbeaten which we are happy with. We learn from it and we know the issues we need to address to make the one point games into three points.”
Youth team striker Zayn Hakeem made a lively second half debut and Murray said: “I thought he was excellent. We had to throw him an energy gel on 10 minutes after coming on. It’s an emotional moment when you first come on.
“I remember that moment when I first came on myself and I was actually sick after 10 minutes.
“It drains everything out of you. You are trying to run around but emotionally you have the whole occasion to deal with.
“I think if he got that opportunity that fell to him after two minutes, if he’d been on longer he’d have scored as he is a goalscorer. But I thought his hold-up play was top drawer and he gave a lot of energy to us.
“He is probably quicker than Greeny which is a good asset, I am very pleased for him.”
Murray looks set to announce his retained list this week.
“It will be this week. I am not going to mess about,” he said. “We have a couple we need to dot the i’s and cross the t’s, but the majority should be done by mid-week.
“I need to switch my brain off. I’ve not stopped for 18 months. I need a few days to review and shut off from the club. I need to review the season and review myself.
“I think it’s been a very good season. We are fine lines away from being an excellent team.
“Where we’ve come from in such a short space of time, it’s credit to the players. They are the ones that have carried it out.
“From nearly being relegated to finishing in the top half and being in with a shout of the play-offs until a few games ago, it’s been a massive step for us.
“Now we have to go again and not rest on that. We will see how we can get better and if we can get the ingredients in to make us better.”
Collins pleased to end season with positive performance
mansfieldtown.net, 7th May 2016
Captain and Man-of-the-Match Lee Collins was happy to end the 2016-17 campaign with a solid display in the draw with Cambridge United today.
The 27-year-old featured at right-back in the first period before moving to centre-half after the interval following an injury to Ryan Tafazolli.
And the former Northampton Town defender was satisfied with the improved second 45 minutes, in which the Stags could’ve grabbed the victory but had to settle for a point in a goalless draw.
“We made it difficult [in the] first half, they had a bit of a better hold of the game - [for the] second half we came out and really put them on the back foot which was a pleasure to watch, finishing the season with a good second half performance,” said Collins.
Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/collins-post-cambridge-3100502.aspx#0qqGJbqKl4W5SMWQ.99
Overall, Collins has been impressed with the progress of the Stags, as well as his personal growth within the club.
“[The season has been] very productive. Personally, I’ve moved to clubs [and] like to think I’ve settled well in a great changing room full of great lads [with] great staff around us.
“From surviving relegation battles season-after-season to nearly getting there (the play-offs) this year with a very new squad, I think everyone to do with the club can be proud.”
Reflecting on the year, the defender feels that the positives far outweigh any negatives, with the Stags finishing in the top half. Meanwhile, he is hoping that his contract situation can be sorted out in the coming days.
“[The] high? Probably Morecambe away, setting up the two goals late on like a natural full-back! Lows have been losing here at Accrington; that was my worst game. There’s been a lot more highs than lows.
“I’m hoping in the next few days we can sort something out [regarding my future]. I hope the rest of the lads are here too because we really have got a good backbone to take into next year.”
Furthermore, Collins believes it is the camaraderie within the squad that has helped them to have a good season in Sky Bet League 2.
“I’ve been in squads where they don’t bounce off each other as well as we have - everyone knows each other [here] really well on and off the field.
“We can 'banter' each other day in and day out and we can be serious with each other and not get personal about it - it just means that we’re demanding more and being professional and all the lads take it in their stride.”
Supporters can view Lee Collins’ post-match interview on Stags Player HD.
Stags skipper Collins close to new deal with club
chad.co.uk, by John Lomas, Saturday 07 May 2016
Mansfield Town captain Lee Collins is hoping to complete a deal this week to enable him to stay at the club for another season.
The inspirational Collins won man of the match in yesterday’s final 0-0 home draw with Cambridge United as Stags finished a respectable 12th just a year after almost going down.
Collins is one of many players in talks about staying and said: “I am very eager. I am hoping in the next few days to sort something out.
“I hope the rest of the squad are here too as we really have a good baton to take into next year.
Read more: http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/mansfield-town/mansfield-town-news/stags-skipper-collins-close-to-new-deal-with-club-1-7898853#ixzz485v6PWKy
“This dressing room is right up there. I’ve been at clubs where the players don’t bounce off each other as well as we do. We know each other really well on and off the field.
“It’s been a very productive season. Personally I have moved clubs and I like to think I have settled well.
“There are some great lads and some great staff around us. As a squad I think it’s been brilliant, from surviving a relegation battle to nearly getting the play-offs this year with a very new squad, I think everyone to do with the club should be proud.”
Collins felt his season got better and better after a false start when injury saw him ruled out of early games and Ryan Tafazolli and Krystian Pearce form a good centre back pairing.
He said: “I had to (improve) as I started flat when I couldn’t get in the team. I’d like to think I got a bit of momentum. Like other players, you get a good run of games and really see your true self.
“My highlight was probably Morecambe away, setting up the two goals late on like a natural full back! My low was losing at home to Accrington, which was my worst game. I was really disappointed with that.”
On the last day draw with Cambridge, he added: “We made it difficult first half - they had a bigger hold on the game, but second half which really came out and put them on the back foot.
“It was a pleasure to watch, finishing the season with a good second half performance.
“I now plan to have some down time from the game for a couple of weeks before I get back on the treadmill.”
Mansfield Town 0 Cambridge United 0: Shaun Derry reaction
Cambridge News, By Michael Vaughton
Cambridge United manager Shaun Derry has been speaking to the media after his team's 0-0 draw at Mansfield in Sky Bet League Two.
ON THE MATCH: "It was a difficult week. Those that follow football staunchly as we do will see results today and that four, five and six goals have been hit, and that happens when you haven't got a lot to play for in the last game of the season.
"We didn't want that to be the case and, to be fair, nor did Mansfield and I think that's why it was such a cagey game with not a lot of quality in it.
Read more: http://www.cambridge-news.co.uk/Mansfield-Town-X-Cambridge-United-X-Shaun-Derry/story-29242669-detail/story.html#ixzz4804WxZmR
"Nobody wanted to really come out of the traps and take the game to the opposition, and that's the disappointment that we didn't end with a win, which we'd have loved to do and be the best of the rest.
"We were eighth up until the 87th minute when (Leyton) Orient scored in their game, but all in all we've all got a lot to be proud and happy about this season.
"I'm really pleased we're eight unbeaten going into next season and I think that's a really, really massive bonus for us.
"Mansfield's not an easy place to come and up until a few weeks ago they were right up there in it (the play-off race). They've got a really tough side that's hard to break down.
"I think the emotional aspects of last week maybe caught up with us."
ON KEEPING ANOTHER CLEAN SHEET: "I'm really pleased, as are Will (Norris) and the back four with another clean sheet.
"We had to make a change at half time as Josh (Coulson) was suffering with a bit of concussion, and (Mark) Roberts has gone on there and defended really well.
"There were lots of positives, but we all want to win. The numbers we travelled with again was phenomenal, the best part of 600 people.
"I was really down last week and it took me a while to get over the disappointment, but I'm looking forward now to next season."
ON ROBBIE SIMPSON NOT BEING IN THE SQUAD: "Robbie was carrying a knock into the final game and he's been carrying it for a three or four weeks, so it was best he didn't come."
Fear factor to blame, says Cambridge boss Derry after Stags draw
chad.co.uk, by John Lomas, Saturday 07 May 2016
Cambridge United boss Shaun Derry felt it was the fear factor of losing the final game of the season that saw Mansfield Town and the U’s battle out a tame 0-0 draw with few chances at either end yesterday.
Both sides missed out on the play-offs late on in the season, United only last weekend, and former Notts County boss Derry said: “It was a difficult week.
“Those that follow football staunchly, as we do, will see results today and that four, five and six goals have been hit, and that happens when you haven’t got a lot to play for in the last game of the season.
Read more: http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/mansfield-town/mansfield-town-news/fear-factor-to-blame-says-cambridge-boss-derry-after-stags-draw-1-7898849#ixzz485uvmS00
“We didn’t want that to be the case and, to be fair, nor did Mansfield and I think that’s why it was such a cagey game with not a lot of quality in it.
“Nobody wanted to really come out of the traps and take the game to the opposition, and that’s the disappointment that we didn’t end with a win, which we’d have loved to do and be the best of the rest.
“We were eighth up until the 87th minute when (Leyton) Orient scored in their game, but all in all we’ve all got a lot to be proud and happy about this season.
“I’m really pleased we’re eight unbeaten going into next season and I think that’s a really, really massive bonus for us.
“Mansfield’s not an easy place to come and up until a few weeks ago they were right up there in it (the play-off race). They’ve got a really tough side that’s hard to break down.
“I think the emotional aspects of last week maybe caught up with us.”
Derry added: “I’m really pleased, as are Will (Norris) and the back four with another clean sheet.
“We had to make a change at half-time as Josh (Coulson) was suffering with a bit of concussion, and (Mark) Roberts has gone on there and defended really well.
“There were lots of positives, but we all want to win. The numbers we travelled with again was phenomenal, the best part of 600 people.
“I was really down last week and it took me a while to get over the disappointment, but I’m looking forward now to next season.”
Santan Zayn @ZaynDaboss
Buzzing to make my league 2 debut at 17 for @mansfieldtownfc / the hard work continues #stags
Ryan Tafazolli @RyanTafazolli
Delighted to win the awards today. Thanks a lot to the fans! Shame I broke my wrist and had to go off! #yellows
Latest | May 2016