EVANS, HAMILTON AND KEVIN NOLAN REACTION
Boss impressed by individual performances in County win
mansfieldtown.net, Tuesday 24 October 2017
Stags' boss Steve Evans says there were 'a number of good performers' in this evening's 2-1 Checkatrade Trophy victory over Notts County at Meadow Lane.
Striker Lee Angol struck after only 47 seconds to give Stags the lead, before veteran frontman Alan Smith equalised for the Magpies just after the half-hour mark. Winger CJ Hamilton then scored his first goal in Stags' colours after 73 minutes to secure the victory.
Stags made 10 changes to their starting XI from Saturday's draw at Newport and although the gaffer recognises that the Magpies weren't at full strength, he was impressed with the level of performance from a number of his players this evening.
"I just said to the players in there: the credit they get is that we have real thoughts for Saturday. There were big performances and I love saying to players: go and show me why you should be in the team.
"Too many players talk cheaply in an office and don't deliver it on the pitch. I thought we had a number of really good performers but at the same time, we do recognise Kevin made changes as well.
"When you look at the quality of the individual performances, I think we've had, just from memory, ten or 11 efforts on target and dare we say it, we could've won here [by] five or six. We were disappointed to be one-each at the interval."
The manager said Stags 'attacked at will' in the first half and the scoreline could have been even more emphatic.
"We laid siege to their goal and we attacked them at will really. We had one that we think is over the line from Rhys Bennett's header. We've had Jimmy [Spencer] when he's brought down, which is a penalty. Jimmy Spencer hits the post and Lee's [Angol] unfortunate with the spin of the ball to not be touching it and tapping it in.
"In the second half, we came out and we said it pass it and move it around and let's create one-on-ones. I thought Omari [Sterling-James] and CJ [Hamilton] gave them real problems one against one and I thought my front two covered every blade of grass."
Midfielder Joel Byrom made his comeback from a foot injury in this evening's game, completing 57 minutes, and the former Leeds United manager commended his performance, as well as that of the match-winner, CJ Hamilton.
"We had to get them in at half-time and we said we were really pleased by the effort and the performance by everybody. I asked my boy Byrom how he was and he said he was good to stay on so we made a decision with the medical team to give him another ten minutes. That's the big plus.
"In the first half, I thought he was simply sensational and that's an easy word but again, he might not get that time if you're playing against players that play every week for County.
"He's (CJ Hamilton) a young man that we've been saying for weeks we should find a way to get him in the team but he's been a little bit up and down in training games and reserve games.
"We love the kid, we gave him a new lease of life when we first walked in here. We had cash offers for him in the summer and we said no. He's given himself every chance of being involved on Saturday."
Supporters will be able to login to iFollow Stags to view the manager's post-match interview later this evening.
Fringe players give Evans food for thought
chad.co.uk, Tuesday 24 October 2017
Mansfield Town boss Steve Evans said matchwinner CJ Hamilton and several other players had staked a genuine claim to play at the weekend after shining in tonight’s 2-1 Checkatrade Trophy group win at neighbours Notts County. With both sides making 10 changes, Lee Angol’s first minute strike was wiped out by Alan Smith’s first goal for Notts on 34 minutes against the run of play. But a scorching finish from Hamilton on 73 minutes kept Stags’ hopes of progress alive.
Evans said: “We were pleased to win it but I’ve not changed my mind from before the game - it (the competition) was not a priority. It became a priority at quarter to eight.
Read more at: http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/fringe-players-give-evans-food-for-thought-1-8822086
“You saw me and Paul get warned by the referee because we want to win every game. “I said to the players afterwards the credit they get in that they have given me real thoughts for Saturday. I thought there were some big performances.
“I said to players go and show me why you should be in the team. Too many players talk cheap in an office and don’t deliver on the pitch.
“But I thought we had a number of really good performances, though I do recognise Kevin Nolan made changes as well.”
He added: “From memory I think we’ve had 10 or 11 efforts on target and, dare I say it, we could have won here five or six couldn’t we?
“We were disappointed to be 1-1 at the interval. Jimmy Spencer got a punch in the nose in the box leading up to the goal. Minutes before that Jimmy Spencer got brought down by the goalkeeper which everyone thought was a penalty bar the referee. “That was the big plus. I thought in the first half he was simply sensational.
“After scoring early we laid siege to their goal and attacked them at will really. We’ve had one we think is over the line from Rhys’ header" (comment from Martin - it was Digby).
“We’ve had Jimmy brought down for a penalty, we’ve had Jimmy hit the post, then their goal came totally against the run of play.
“It’s a set play but all I’d say to our 400-plus supporters tonight is have a look at that when you get back. If you did that on the street you’d get charged with assault. He just turned and smacked Jimmy across the face.
“That seems to be allowed in the modern day game. “Second half we said let’s get the ball down, pass it and move it around and let’s create one-on-ones.”
Hamilton eventually won the day s he found the top corner from 15 yards and Evans smiled: “I have been saying for weeks he is a young man we should be trying to find a way to get him in the team. “He has been a little bit up and down in training games and reserve games. But we love the kid.
“We gave him a lease of life when we walked in here and we had cash offers for him in the summer and said no. “He has given him every chance of being involved on Saturday. Whether he’s given himself a chance of starting, I never pick a team myself without taking council from other people first.
“I thought Omari and CJ gave them real problems and my front two covered every blade of grass. “We have won a game and kept the chance of going through. But we’re not worried about that.”
Matchwinner Hamilton savours first goal for the Stags
chad.co.uk, Tuesday 24 October 2017
CJ Hamilton was Mansfield Town’s unlikely matchwinner with a rocket shot off his ‘wrong’ foot at Notts County last night for his first competitive goal for the Stags and first goal in 20 months. A Stags side showing 10 changes won 2-1 in the Checkatrade Trophy group game at neighbours Notts as Hamilton scored for the first time since netting for Gateshead in a 3-2 win at Altrincham on 8th March 2016.
“I did score in pre-season but I can’t remember the last time I scored in a league game,” he smiled.
“Personally I hope it kicks me on and hopefully I can contribute a lot more to the team with more assists and more goals. “It’s been so frustrating not to get a goal in the last 12 months, so just getting off the mark is what you want. “You’d never expect me to score with my right foot. I just hit it with everything I’d got and luckily it went in.
“I caught it so sweetly I knew it was going in. I could see the path of the ball.”
Read more at: http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/video-matchwinner-hamilton-savours-first-goal-for-the-stags-1-8822744
It was a first win in five games for Mansfield and a booster ahead of Saturday’s League Two visit of Exeter City with Hamilton and several other fringe players staking firm claims for a place. “It was a great shift by all the boys. We dug deep and obviously got the victory in the end,” he said.
“Everyone is happy to get the win and hopefully we can bounce on and get another at the weekend.”
Even though it was only the Checkatrade Trophy, Hamilton said the pressure was still on. “We want to start winning games on the bounce, so there was still a lot of pressure on us to get the victory,” he said.
“We were told to play with freedom. We were trying to get the ball down and pass it a lot more and trying to create opportunities, which we did.”
Fleet-footed winger ecstatic to get off the mark
mansfieldtown.net, Tuesday 24 October 2017
Match-winner CJ Hamilton was delighted to score his first goal for the Stags after bagging the winner in tonight's 2-1 Checkatrade Trophy win over Notts County.
Stags took a very early lead when forward Lee Angol found the bottom corner after just 47 seconds before County responded through striker Alan Smith, the former England international turning the ball home from close range on 34 minutes.
Former Sheffield United winger Hamilton then made his mark with just over quarter of an hour to go as he blasted a shot into the roof of the net with his right foot to give Stags their first win in this season's Checkatrade Trophy.
The 73rd-minute strike was Hamilton's first competitive goal for the Stags and the winger was visibly delighted to open his account for the club.
"It was so frustrating not being able to get a goal in the last 12 months and to finally get one, just getting off the mark is what you want," Hamilton said.
"You'd never expect it, right footed. I just thought I'd hit it with everything I've got and, luckily, it went in.
"I caught it so sweetly; I could see the path of the ball already and I was thinking: 'yeah, this is in' and that was it."
Hamilton was also full of praise for his team-mates who put in a terrific performance to secure their second win over the Magpies in the last few weeks following a 3-1 league victory at One Call Stadium in September.
"It's just a great shift overall by the boys, obviously we dug deep and we got the victory in the end.
"The boys dug very deep; from the back four to the midfield to the strikers running their socks off, everyone put in a very good performance today.
"Everyone's happy to get another win and hopefully we can bounce on and get another win at the weekend."
Despite Stags' boss Steve Evans admitting that the Checkatrade Trophy isn't a priority this season, Hamilton believes it is important to build a winning mentality.
"We want to start winning games on the bounce so there was still a lot of pressure on us to get the victory.
"We got told we could play with a lot more freedom and we were trying to pass it and get the ball down a lot more and create opportunities which you saw we did, which was good for all the boys."
Supporters will be able to login to iFollow Stags to view CJ Hamilton's post-match interview later tonight.
Nolan: There are players ready and waiting
Kevin Nolan was impressed with a number of individual performances in tonight's Checkatrade Trophy tie against Mansfield.
Goals from Lee Angol and CJ Hamilton gave the Stags the win, leaving Alan Smith's first goal for Notts as a mere consolation.
However, the manager was full of praise for his former Newcastle United team-mate.
"Tonight I learned that there are players who are ready and waiting for their opportunity," he said. "A couple have taken a lot on board and are getting better, so that was pleasing.
"I also learned that Alan Smith can score for us! He was great and that's what you're going to get from him when he plays.
"He still has the hunger and desire but unfortunately his legs won't allow him to complete 90 minutes as much as he would probably like to.
"He took his goal really well but that's what we expect of him when we put him up front because he has been doing that all his career.
"He's played in a deeper role during his time here but I have told him he's a forward again now so we expect him to chip in with a couple of goals here and there."
At the other end of the spectrum, Callum Saunders and Elliot Hodge both caught the eye with their displays.
"I thought they did really well," said the manager. "I was pleased with both of them.
"Callum led the line well and ran the channels, showing what he's all about. He was probably unlucky not to get a couple more chances but he'll get better the more we work with him.
"Elliot did well in, particularly in the first half; he did a lot of good things.
"When you have two young lads who are decent, hungry and have pace, it excites crowds so I was delighted for them and they should be pleased with what they put out there tonight."
Notts County 'weren’t at the level we need to be' - boss Kevin Nolan can't hide frustration after defeat to Mansfield Town
nottinghampost.com, by Leigh Curtis, 24 OCT 2017
Notts County manager Kevin Nolan couldn’t hide his frustration after Mansfield Town left their hopes of progress in the Checkatrade Trophy hanging in the balance.
The Stags sealed a 2-1 win at Meadow Lane as the two teams made 20 changes between them for the Northern Group G clash.
Lee Angol put the visitors ahead in under a minute before Alan Smith equalised before half-time as he scored his first goal for the club.
But CJ Hamilton took advantage of some poor defending to seal the Stags’ win, and boss Nolan said he was very disappointed with the way they had surrendered the game.
“I am very frustrated and disappointed because of how cheaply we gave goals away,” he said.
“There were a lot of good individual performances, but we just weren’t at the level where we need to be.
“We have lots of work to do and I was disappointed in the manner Mansfield won.
“There wasn’t much in it and I don’t think they deserved to win the game, but I don’t think we did anything to deserve the win either.”
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