Stags set for Robins contest
mansfieldtown.net, Monday 25 September 2017
Stags' boss Steve Evans says his squad are in 'good health' as they embark on the trip to Gloucestershire ahead of tomorrow's game against Cheltenham Town in which we'll look to extend our six-match unbeaten run.
Tomorrow's fixture at the LCI Rail Stadium (7.45pm kick-off) will be Stags' sixth game in September, a spell which has thus far yielded three wins and two draws.
And the manager believes the 'one or two' players suffering from knocks are in good hands with the club's medical department.
"The general health is good. We've just got one or two knocks that we're having to deal with, probably one or two in key areas," the Stags' chief said.
"We'll look at how fresh the players are this morning. There might be one or two tired legs; again, we've got one or two knocks but we're not going to speak about them, we'll leave them to the medical department.
"That comes across the course of the season and that's why we've got the players that we've got here, because it does take all types. There's some clubs that are doing particularly well, but if they get two or three knocks it'll be a problem for them.
"We wouldn't like to think it's a problem, we think it's an opportunity because some of the lads probably think they should be playing. That's always the way when you get real healthy competition in the group."
The gaffer says he will take the threat posed by the Robins - who drew away to Accrington Stanley on Saturday - into consideration, but believes if he gets his team selection correct, they will always stand a chance of winning a game.
"It was a real tough game on Saturday; we had to go to 97 minutes on the clock to secure the points and we make the trip down to Cheltenham and Whaddon Road is a place that's always tough. It's a ground that [when] you go there when Gary's (Johnson, Cheltenham boss) got the best of his players available, it's never going to be easy.
"We say that if we get our game right, most of the time we're going to be involved in trying to win it. We'll take the consideration of the opposition as a big factor and then we'll sit down as a management team, as we always do, and i'll seek opinion and counsel and I'll retire to pick it."
The gaffer praised the impact of striker Danny Rose, who has scored winners in consecutive games in the last two weeks, heading home against Lincoln City last week before sweeping the ball into the net against Cambridge United on Saturday.
“When we arrived here, he had a conversation with myself and Paul Raynor in the office and he said he’s never been a player known to play beyond 60 minutes. Our aim in the summer was to get him so he could play 90 minutes.
“Our supporters around the bench probably heard me ask him ‘how are you?’ because it would have been a disaster for us to withdraw Kane Hemmings for us to then have Danny saying ‘look, my legs have gone’.
“He’s a real good guy. He works ever-so-hard, he comes in with a smile every day. He’s a lovely kid and, more importantly, he’s a young man at the minute who’s high in confidence and every time the ball goes in the box, he looks as though he can score a goal.”
Supporters will be able to login to iFollow Stags later today to view the manager's full news conference.
Stags head south wary of improving Robins
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Monday 25 September 2017
Mansfield Town manager Steve Evans believes Cheltenham Town’s magnificent 1-1 draw at high-flying Accrington on Saturday underlined how tough it will be for the Stags at Whaddon Road tomorrow night (7.45). After a poor start, Gary Johnson’s side have started to find some form, though still sit 21st with fifth-placed Stags heading south today on a six-game unbeaten League run. “It (Cheltenham’s form) was a little bit patchy to start with, but Garry has made one or two good signings, the boy (Alex) Davey coming in who was at Chelsea before,” said Evans. “I watched back their game from the weekend and I think it’s fair to say there’s not many teams who go to Accrington and dominate for large spells - and they did. “They were under the cosh a bit early on, but dealt with that, came through and scored a goal against the run of play. “Second half it was game on and either team could have won it. It was a good performance by Gary’s side. With a second derby in three weeks looming on Saturday against Notts County, Evans admitted: “We have had a run of games that have been really tough physically, taking the demands on the players to the extreme. And we have the same again this week. “That was a really tough match against Cambridge on Saturday - we had to go to 97 minutes on the clock to secure the points. “Then we have to make the trip down to Cheltenham and Whaddon Road is a place that’s always tough. It’s never a ground you go to, when Gary has the best of his players available, and think it’s ever going to be easy. “So that will be tough and then we go into Saturday, which we will only think about at 11pm on Tuesday evening.” Evans said there were one or two bumps and bruises from the weekend and he was hoping they would be cleared to play before the team coach heads for Cheltenham tonight. “We will take into account a number of factors before we pick the team,” he said. “We will take into account our players first and foremost. We say if we get our game right most of the time then we will be involved in trying to win it. “So we’ll be looking at how fresh the players are today. There will be one or two tired legs and we have one or two knocks - we will leave them to the medical department - and we’ll also consideration the opposition - that’s a big factor. “We have one or two knocks we are having to deal with, probably one or two in key areas. “But that comes over a course of a season and is why we have the players we’ve got here. It takes all types.” He continued: “Some clubs are doing particularly well but if they got two or three knocks it would be a problem for them. “We wouldn’t like to think of it as a problem, we’d like to think of it as an opportunity as some of the lads probably feel they should be playing. “That’s always the way when you get really healthy competition in the group. I don’t want players on the bench or up in the seats watching the game with a smile on their face and happy they’ve not been selected. “They are the type of players that we don’t want and I have never wanted. They don’t belong in our squad. “We will sit down as a management team as we always do, seek opinion and counsel and then I will retire to pick the team.” An 87th minute Danny Rose goal saw Stags come from behind to beat Cambridge 2-1 on Saturday and Evans said: “It was a great three points and a good win, though I don’t think we were at our best. “I said that after the game and I have since watched back the whole 90 minutes and still think that. “I do think it would have been harsh if we’d have lost it as I don’t remember Conrad making too many saves - one first half and one second half. “Once we’d scored the penalty I did think we’d go on and win the game. Apart from a few corners well into in added time we were dominant in that last 15 minutes, trying to get a winner without being overly creative. “I was pleased with the substitutes and I was pleased to get a win when a draw was a fair result.” The Stags are unbeaten in their last four trips to Cheltenham.
Read more at: http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/stags-head-south-wary-of-improving-robins-1-8771964
Boss backs Hemmings to start scoring soon
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Monday 25 September 2017
Stags manager Steve Evans is backing loanee striker Kane Hemmings to hit the goals trail soon. Some fans are starting to lose patience as Hemmings has failed to score in any of his six games so far and had a penalty saved, yet he arrived on loan from Oxford last month with a scoring record of almost one every two games.
“He just needs a goal,” said Evans. “I can remember Alan Shearer getting that sort of stick once and how can you give him stick?
Read more at: http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/boss-backs-hemmings-to-start-scoring-soon-1-8771944
“Strikers occasionally do go through spells. Kane has always been a goalscorer and always will be a goalscorer.
“Probably by this stage he gets a little bit frustrated and wants things to happen quicker which affects your all-round game when that’s in your head.
“But we’ve never seen chalk and cheese as much in two Saturdays as Paul Digby. At Lincoln he was man of the match for me and outstanding, then wasn’t so good here on Saturday. It can happen in football.”
Evans added: “What you need is a management team who believe in you. We believe in Kane Hemmings and if he was available tomorrow we’d still try to bring him to the football club.
“We have to believe he will deliver the goods.”
Robins are finding more consistency - Boss
ctfc.com, Monday 25 September 2017
Manager Gary Johnson believes his Robins are finding more consistency to their game - but warned they must maintain those standards when they face Mansfield at the LCI Rail Stadium on Tuesday night (kick-off 7.45pm).
Johnson's men claimed an impressive draw at Accrington Stanley at the weekend and could have taken all three points from the Wham Stadium after a bright finish.
They return to home soil tomorrow night (Tuesday) as Mansfield arrive in town - and Johnson knows the size of the challenge his team will face.
He said: "Mansfield have been in-form and have got an experienced team. They are reaping the rewards because there is no substitute for experience.
"We have got to be in the game and hope that something falls for you or that bit of quality comes out.
"We have done a lot of homework already, as I am sure Mansfield have, and we are at home and have got to take advantage of that.
"Everyone gets more points at home, but we have got a tough nut to crack."
"We seem to be more consistent with our play now," he added. "We've been pretty solid at the back for a while and definitely been creating chances.
"We scored one away, took three last home game. I've always said to the boys we've got to score two to not lose the game so that is our aim.
"We had our chances at Accrington and, to be fair, their manager John Coleman acknowledged after the game that we finished strong and, but for the goalkeeper, we could have got a couple more goals."
Mansfield Town boss Steve Evans yet to experience winning feeling at Cheltenham Town
Not a happy hunting ground for Scotsman
BY JON PALMER, 25 SEP 2017, gloucestershirelive.co.uk
Steve Evans has been in the away dug out at Whaddon Road during spells in charge of Boston United, Crawley Town, Rotherham United and Mansfield Town, but he is yet to win in five previous attempts at the home of Cheltenham Town.
The Scotman's first visit was the day Paul Gascoigne played against the Robins, in August 2004.
Jamie Victory's goal earned John Ward's Cheltenham side a 1-0 win, with former England star Gascoigne joining the action as an 82nd minute substitute.
The following season, Victory scored again in a 3-0 victory for the home side after Damian Spencer had opened the scoring.
it was a miserable afternoon for Boston's Ben Futcher, who scored an own goal before half-time and was then sent off in the 88th minute for a second yellow card.
Former Aston Villa and Leicester City striker Julian Joachim and ex-Nottingham Forest forward Jason Lee started up front for Boston, but it was Spencer and Odejayi who caught the eye in a comfortable triumph for Ward's side, who went on to win promotion via the play-offs that season.
Evans and Cheltenham next crossed paths early in the 2011/12 season, when newly-promoted Crawley arrived at Whaddon Road on an unbeaten run of 34 league games.
They found themselves 3-0 down after a first half that Evans described as "lazy and disgraceful".
Kaid Mohamed put Cheltenham ahead when he stroked in Darryl Duffy's cross from the right in the 22nd minute.
Marlon Pack steered home Jeff Goulding's cross to make it 2-0 before Goulding fired in a third from the edge of the box.
Wes Thomas, who had left Cheltenham to join Crawley the previous summer, was hauled off at half-time and Matt Tubbs pulled one back for Crawley from the penalty spot after Alan Bennett fouled Tyrone Barnett as it ended 3-1.
Before the season was out Evans had left Crawley to take over at Rotherham United, who visited Cheltenham in March of the following campaign.
Jermaine McGlashan, Pack and Steve Elliott scored the goals in 3-0 win for Cheltenham, who had to leave Jason Taylor out as part of a gentleman's agreement after his switch from Yorkshire to Gloucestershire earlier in the season.
David Noble, who went on to play for Cheltenham on loan, started the match for the Millers, while Odejayi went on from the bench against his old club, but Rotherham could not find a way through.
Evans' most recent visit was last season, when his Mansfield Town team drew 0-0 at Whaddon Road.
Kyle Storer was sent off in the 18th minute for a challenge on Jamie McGuire, with Robins boss Gary Johnson sent to the stand for his protests.
Evans described it as "the most one-sided 0-0 I have ever seen".
It was Johnson's final match of the season on the touchline before undergoing triple heart bypass surgery in March.
Mansfield Town boss Steve Evans is not on my 'horrible list', says Cheltenham Town manager Gary Johnson
Mutual respect between old touchline sparring partners
BY JON PALMER, 25 SEP 2017, gloucestershirelive.co.uk
Gary Johnson says he has nothing but respect for Steve Evans, despite some of the colourful Mansfield Town manager's antics on the touchline.
The pair have been doing battle since 2001/02, when Johnson's Yeovil Town were vying with Evans' Boston for the Conference title.
Yeovil ended up third, but won the FA Trophy that season and followed Boston into the Football League by finishing top a year later.
Evans is always loud and often controversial, often clashing with former Robins boss Mark Yates when he was in charge of Crawley Town.
But Johnson admires the 54-year-old Glaswegian for his passion ahead of Tuesday night's meeting at Whaddon Road.
"Steve has done well for himself and he wears his heart on his sleeve, as they say," Johnson said.
"He's a passionate fella and he's not on my 'horrible list' because I respect what he's done and what he does.
"You know it's going to be a competition on and off the pitch because everything he does is geared around making his team competitive and successful.
"We'll wait and see if there are any shenanigans on Tuesday night, but you could probably make a documentary about his personality in the technical area.
"I've heard all about his half-time team talks and maybe he's heard about mine, I'm not sure, but it's always good to bump into him, as that's easy to do as he's a big fella!"
One of the pre-season favourites for promotion, Mansfield arrive at Cheltenham in fifth place after coming back from a goal down to defeat Cambridge United 2-1 at Field Mill on Saturday.
They have only lost once this season and Johnson knows his side may have to be patient if they are to break down the solid Stags, who will include ex-Robin Omari Sterling-James in their ranks.
"They have a very good group who are good at getting behind the ball in a position of strength and then trying to break, with two lively strikers, whichever two they pick" Johnson said.
"We will have to be clever tactically and aware of what they do.
"Teams are finding it hard to break them down enough and when Cambridge did, they came back and scored two goals in the second half.
"We might need a bit of patience, but we’ll have to wait and see how it pans out.
"The important thing is staying in the game, but I feel we are a fit side and defenders get tired if you are putting them under pressure."
Nigel Atangana went off with cramp in Saturday's 1-1 draw at Accrington Stanley, but the midfielder is expected to be fit to face Mansfield.
Kyle Storer is also likely to be in contention after missing out at the weekend with a calf injury picked up in the 3-1 home win over Colchester United.
Jordon Forster (Achilles) and Jaanai Gordon (knee) are both out.
Latest | September 2017