Boss to relish Cambridge test
mansfieldtown.net, 19th January 2017
Stags’ boss Steve Evans says Saturday’s Sky Bet League Two clash against Cambridge United gives him the chance to gauge his side’s play-off credentials.
We travel to the Cambs Glass Stadium to face a U’s side who haven’t tasted defeat in Sky Bet League Two for eight games.
And the gaffer believes Cambridge will ultimately finish the season inside the play-offs and Saturday’s match will act as a reference point to judge how his side are progressing.
The manager said: “It’s a real benchmark for us; we get an opportunity to go and say ‘are we really contenders?’ or ‘are we kidding ourselves along and we should get ready in the summer?’
“It will tell us a lot about individuals. Football is always about an individual sport, people forget that. It’s a team that comes together, made up by individual performances. We need to go there and we need to be better than Cambridge on the day, and that’s going to be tough. I watched them at first hand and they gave a good Leeds United XI the run-around for 60 minutes.
Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/2016-17/boss-to-relish-cambridge-test-3527747.aspx#WVWxkm08kp24sMuH.99
“We need to go there, be on the front foot and make it a game. It’s not always about winning or losing or getting a point, just how close are we to Cambridge? Because I believe Cambridge will be up there [in the top seven].”
Loanee Shaquile Coulthirst trained with his new team-mates for the first time this morning and the manager says his recruitment isn’t yet complete and is currently in talks with a club from the league above regarding the permanent addition of a player.
“Obviously we’re nearing the top end of our loans - we’ve probably got room for one more loan, which would make six.
“We’ve got Kyle Howkins who is probably a couple of weeks away. Probably for the period of that three weeks, all five could be available and then it’d be five from six but I’ve always done that, I’ve never had a problem with it.
“We’re hopeful now that we need to really focus and try and get over the line one or two permanent deals. We’re in conversations - I’ve had a long chat with a top end League One manager today about a permanent deal about one of his players.
“He’s been very positive and responsive and I’m now waiting on that young man’s representatives speaking to us. We can proceed on that fairly quickly if we can get the green light from the boy’s agents.”
The manager also reflected on Tuesday’s victory over Notts County in the Central League Cup and highlighted midfielder Jack Thomas as a stand-out performer.
“I think full praise must be given to young Jack Thomas - he’s suddenly looked like the player who we can remember watching last season when he got into the team and he was a real box-to-box dynamic midfield player.
“We’ve got him a little bit fitter, so Lee Taylor (fitness and rehabilitation coach) takes a lot of compliments. He’s got him a lot fitter and he’s been able to produce performances like that.
“I think there’s winners; Danny Rose and Paddy Hoban will always look a handful for any team, so I was pleased with that. The boy [James] Baxendale, he’s had a lot of minutes under me because I think he’s a real talent. I think like most others here, we just need to get him a little bit sharper.”
Supporters can view Steve Evans’ news conference, in full, on Stags PlayerHD.
Cambridge clash can be a yardstick for new-look Stags, says Evans
chad.co.uk, by John Lomas
Mansfield Town manager Steve Evans believes tomorrow’s game at Cambridge United can be a yardstick as to how serious his new-look side are as play-off contenders this season.
Evans has brought in six new faces in January with more to come and believes Cambridge are a side who will finish in the play-offs, so sees this game as a great chance to assess his own team alongside. “It is a real benchmark for us,” said Evans.
“We get the opportunity to go and say - are we really contenders or are we kidding ourselves on and should we get ready in the summer? “I think Saturday will tell us a lot about individuals. A team comes together made up by individual performances.
“We need to go there and be better than Cambridge on the day, and that’s going to be tough.” He added: “I watched them first hand give a good Leeds United side the run-around for 60 minutes. Dare I say that cup tie should have been two or three nil to Cambridge at half-time.
Read more at: http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/cambridge-clash-can-be-a-yardstick-for-new-look-stags-says-evans-1-8344276
“Only one or two outstanding saves by Marco Silvestri stopped that. We need to go there on the front foot and make sure we make it a game.
“It’s not always about wining and losing or getting a point, it’s just how close are we to Cambridge as I believe they will be up there.
“It chops and changes in this league but we can achieve if we stay in the pack at this minute in time.”
Evans is looking forward to seeing United boss Shaun Derry who, after a poor start this campaign has taken Cambridge to one point and one place outside the play-offs and is currently unbeaten in eight League games.
“I love the manager. I loved him as a player and I love him as a person,” said Evans.
“He often spoke to me when we were at Rotherham and at Leeds and he was always asking about the availability of players and my thoughts on players and he is one of the game’s real hard-working guys.
“I have a lot of respect for him - and I will have even more respect for him if he gets his hand in his pocket and gets a nice bottle of red wine for after the game! “A big investment has gone into the team. Jez George has done a wonderful job and controls the club. He works very hand in glove with his board.
“They have used the money from the Manchester United game last year and the cup run and Leeds United game this year and I’ve heard Jez say he wants a couple more quality players.
“I believe they will be in the top seven come 6th May.”
The Stags head to the Abbey Stadium unbeaten in five games and not having conceded a goal in 377 minutes of football.
New signing, on-loan Peterborough striker Shaq Coulthirst goes straight into the Mansfield squad.
Thomas impresses Evans in Stags reserves’ win over Notts
chad.co.uk, by John Lomas
Steve Evans confirmed that midfielder Jack Thomas had caught his eye during the reserve team’s 2-1 win over Notts County on Tuesday.
Thomas has found himself on the fringes of the squad all season, but as part of a very strong reserves side he shone, particularly in the second half as he proved he is finally fully fit and a serious contender for a first team start.
Evans, who fielded nine first teamers in the side, said: “It was good for the players. We started really bright. We had a real energy and purpose in the first 15 minutes and got two early goals.
“At that time you were probably thinking this could get a bit too easy, and it did become too easy. What happens from that is players take an extra touch, they try to hit their pass more precise and everything goes off a bit.
Read more at: http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/thomas-impresses-evans-in-stags-reserves-win-over-notts-1-8344173
“But we worked incredibly hard and full praise must be given to young Jack Thomas. “He suddenly looked like the player we could remember watching last season when he got into the team. He was a really dynamic box to box player.
“We have got him a bit fitter so Lee Taylor takes a lot of compliments for that as Jack has been able to produce performances like that.”
He added: “There were other winners. Danny Rose and Paddy Hoban will always look a handful for any team so I was really pleased with them and the boy Baxendale has had a lot of minutes under me as I think he is a real talent. But, like most others here we just need him to get a little bit sharper.”
The side contained two young players in Keiran Harrison and Louis Danquah and Evans said: “It’s great to see the young lads come through.
“Nothing will please me more than two or three Mansfield youngsters being able to break into the squad and get in the team.
“The youth team have a big task here as the quality of the first team goes up. It gets tougher.
“So the demands on the youth team staff will actually go up to find better players as we will hopefully very soon trying to find players good enough to go to League One and the Championship and not just League Two.”
Evans eyes three more before window closes
chad.co.uk, by John Lomas
Mansfield Town boss Steve Evans is still hoping to complete deals for two more permanent signings and another loan player before the window closes.
Shaq Coulthirst became the Stags’ sixth signing in the transfer window so far when he came in on loan from Peterborough yesterday with Chris Clements departing for Grimsby Town.
Now Evans is close to a permanent deal for one player and also closing in on another loan signing, which will take his loans tally to six but only able to play five of them at once.
“We are still working on it,” he said between phone calls. “We are nearing the top end of our loans, we’ve room for probably one more loan, which would make six.
Read more at: http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/evans-eyes-three-more-before-window-closes-1-8344156
“Obviously we have Kyle Howkins two or three weeks away, so probably for that period all five could be available, then it would be five from six. But I have always done that. I’ve never had a problem with it.
“It just makes it a little bit of competition within the big group competition if you like and that is healthy.”
But Evans is keen to get in some permanent signings.
“We now want to try to get over the line one or two permanent deals,” he said.
“I have had a long chat with a top end League One manager today about a permanent deal for one of his players. He has been very positive in response.
“I am now waiting on that young man’s representatives speaking to us, but we can proceed on that fairly quickly if we can get the green light from the boy’s agent.”
Evans said one of his deals may still come off before the trip to Cambridge, but it would come too late for anything other than a place on the bench apart from injury or illness.
“There is still a possibility, but they wouldn’t start,” he said.
“The players in the building today are the people focused on the training ground.
“It was important we got Shaq done today so a thank you to Darragh MacAnthony who expediated the deal for us to get him in the building and he comes into our thoughts. Evans confirmed Stags’ interest in Blackpool forward Jack Redshaw was over.
“It’s as dead as dodos,” he said. “We tried to do something and Gary (Bowyer) was good to deal with. There were no issues. We just didn’t want to make it happen at the end of the day. “People can conclude the boy Coulthirst becoming available changed everything.”
Tight defence makes Pearce proud
mansfieldtown.net, 19th January 2017
Centre-half Krystian Pearce says he is proud to be a part of the Stags’ current defensive solidity and hopes to continue the excellent run of clean sheets against Cambridge United on Saturday.
The Stags have recorded an impressive four clean sheets in their last five outings, winning three and drawing two during the unbeaten run.
The impervious Mansfield rearguard has been a crucial factor for manager Steve Evans’ men going unbeaten in the previous five games, and Pearce has hailed the contributions of his defensive colleagues.
“Obviously, he (Jake Kean) has come in and done well. He has come in and just been a solid base for us,” Pearce said.
Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/2016-17/tight-defence-makes-pearce-proud-3528158.aspx#zP4iJZM9fFYtZV2o.99
“He (Hayden White) slotted right in [to the defence] and I felt comfortable playing with him. So, hopefully we can build on it.
“For me, Lee Collins has been our best player in the last few games. He has done everything asked of him, so I am glad that he has played in front of us.”
Pearce, who has racked up 68 appearances for the Stags since switching from Torquay United in the summer of 2015, explained how he has adapted to playing with different defensive partners.
“It is about adapting to who you are playing with and trying to get the best partnership you can with whoever you are playing with.
“They (Kyle Howkins and Rhys Bennett) are both big lads, both quick and strong. They both win their headers. So we just try to complement each other as much as possible.
“Obviously I take pride in our defensive records, and I try to get as many clean sheets as possible.”
The Stags next make the trip to Cambridge United this Saturday, who are unbeaten in their last eight Sky Bet League Two fixtures.
Pearce says it is important for Stags to show that they can match teams like Cambridge United as they work towards finishing the season in the Sky Bet League Two play-off positions.
“If we are serious about getting promoted, we have to go to places like Cambridge and get the [right] results.
“Hopefully we can go down there on Saturday and keep another clean sheet and win the game. Hopefully we can get the three points everybody wants, and it would be a good game to watch.”
Supporters can view Krystian Pearce’s news conference, in its entirety, on Stags PlayerHD.
Pearce: ‘My best is yet to come for Stags’
chad.co.uk, by John Lomas
Krystian Pearce says his best is yet to come at Mansfield Town. The 27-year-old centre-back has been part of a Stags defence which has kept four clean sheets in their last five outings.
And he is keen to see where the Stags can go under new manager Steve Evans during the second half of the season.
Pearce said: “I think my best is still to come but I’m happy with the level I’m at at the moment.”
And added: “I think the results speak for themselves. We’ve not conceded in God knows how many games and obviously we’re picking up points so the evidence is there.
Read more at: http://www.hucknalldispatch.co.uk/sport/football/pearce-my-best-is-yet-to-come-for-stags-1-8344655
“We’re excited by the players coming in, they’ve all done well and by the sounds of it there will be a few more coming in so hopefully it will improve the team further.”
Evans has indicated he would like to further add to his squad ahead of the transfer window closing. Stags finalised a deal to bring in Shaquile Coulthirst on loan yesterday.
Pearce and Coulthirst know each other from their time at Torquay United when the former Spurs academy product joined towards the end of the 2013/14 season.
Pearce said: “I’ve played with Shaq at Torquay. He came in late in the season and did well. He went back to Spurs but I’m looking forward to playing with him again.
“Hopefully [he’ll get] a few more goals. He’s sharp, got good movement and got a good touch as well as an eye for goal so hopefully he’ll nick a few goals.
“We’ve trained and I’ve tried to put him in my pocket as much as possible.”
Cambridge United manager Shaun Derry wary of Mansfield Town’s attacking threat
chad.co.uk, by John Lomas
Shaun Derry has spoken of the attacking threat Mansfield Town possess in their ranks. The Cambridge United boss is preparing his side for Saturday’s clash against a new-look Stags with a new manager in Steve Evans.
Derry is well aware of the striking options Stags have within their ranks - but is concentrating on what trouble the U’s can muster.
He said: “Steve will want to go out and win the game.
“He’s a new manager at the helm and he has been given the green light to go and change the squad dramatically.
“He has made a number of changes, technical changes as well in terms of the way they set up the team, so we’re pretty aware of what the strengths of the players are.
Read more at: http://www.hucknalldispatch.co.uk/sport/football/cambridge-united-manager-shaun-derry-wary-of-mansfield-town-s-attacking-threat-1-8344314
“We’re all aware of what a track record Steve has got as well, but at the same time we’re in good form.
“I want them to be coming to Cambridge United and seeing the problems we can pose for them.
“We’ve proved that over a number of weeks now.
“I understand this weekend is going to be a tight affair, you mention about the goal against column and it’s pretty healthy for Mansfield Town, so we need to be on our game and take our game to the opposition.
And added: “Matt Green has led the line for them over the last couple of years and he has done it particularly well, he’s a good player.
“But Yoann Arquin at the top, Shaquile Coulthirst has just arrived, Pat Hoban, and two or three others there, they’ve got options up the top and they play in a system where they cater for two centre-forwards as well, but like I say, let’s just think about ourselves.”
MATCH PREVIEW | MANSFIELD TOWN - HOME
20th January 2017
Cambridge United entertain Mansfield Town at the Cambs Glass Stadium on Saturday afternoon, with the U’s in search of a seventh win from their last nine Sky Bet League Two fixtures.
Shaun Derry’s men are unbeaten in their previous eight League fixtures and have not lost a game at the Cambs Glass Stadium since the defeat to Wycombe Wanderers in late November.
United have been slightly hampered by injury in recent weeks, but Harrison Dunk and Brad Halliday both face late assessments as to whether they will be available for the clash with the Stags, whilst the additions of Jake Carroll, Paul Lewis and Scott Wharton in January have added depth to the U’s squad.
Read more at http://www.cambridge-united.co.uk/news/article/2016-17/match-preview-mansfield-town-home-3529001.aspx#o1EWV4CW5ad3MBJz.99
Cambridge United defender Greg Taylor ruled out of Mansfield Town game in League 2
BY MICHAEL VAUGHTON, 19 JAN 2017
Greg Taylor is set for a couple of weeks on the sidelines with the groin problem he picked up against Blackpool.
The Cambridge United full-back was forced off at half time in last Saturday’s 0-0 draw with the Seasiders in Sky Bet League Two.
And, speaking at his pre-match press conference ahead of this weekend’s visit of Mansfield Town, United manager Shaun Derry said Taylor will certainly miss out.
The boss also said Brad Halliday will once again be given as long as possible to prove his fitness, while Harrison Dunk appears unlikely to be back in the starting line-up yet.
“Greg’s a loss for us this week,” said Derry. “His injury is a groin problem and it’s going to keep him out for a few weeks.
“Brad’s going to be touch and go for the weekend, so it will be a late shout for him.
“He’s become a very good player us. The levels he’s been producing since he came here have been high, so we want him to be able to pull on that shirt so many more times between now and the end of the season.
“To go and risk him for one game, we have to make sure that risk is very, very low.
“H is another one of those where we need to make sure his hamstring problem doesn’t rear its ugly head again.
“We have to make sure he comes back and then stays in the squad because, to be fair to H, he put his body on the line for us against Notts County and Leeds.
“In a different situation I perhaps wouldn’t have been calling for him to be on the bench, but he did it and that’s testament to how he wants to be involved in the group even though he’s not 100 per cent fit.”
Latest | January 2017