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Archived News from March 2003

27th March 2003 13:22

BY IAN WILKERSON, Evening Post, 27 March 2003

Mansfield Town boss Keith Curle was today still looking to fill the vacant No.9 shirt at Field Mill, but admitted he was not desperate to sign a new striker before the end of today's transfer deadline.

The shirt was originally allocated to Shayne Bradley before his departure to Chesterfield and only Colin Little - who was on a loan spell from Crewe Alexandra under former boss Stuart Watkiss - has worn it since. Curle admitted he was trying to bring a new striker to the Division Two strugglers but would not be broken-hearted if the search became fruitless.

His staff are still busy flicking through their contact books to see if they could bring anyone in, but he said today it was unlikely he would be able to bolster his squad.

Stags already have one of the most in-form strikers in the division in Iyseden Christie, who has scored 19 goals this term.

Curle said: "We are still chasing a few names using the contacts we all have but, at the moment, we are finding that the people we would like do not want to leave the clubs they are at.

"At the moment they are reluctant to leave and, ideally, we are looking at a centre-forward.

"We would like a strong player who could score goals, hold the ball up and use it well but the problem is most players who fall into that category are already playing for someone else's first team.

"But, in all honesty, it shouldn't really be a problem because we have got players here who have scored nearly 60 goals already this season so if we cannot bring anybody in, so be it."

Meanwhile, Andy White offered a reminder to his manager with a goal in the reserves as they fought back from a two-goal deficit to record a 3-2 win over a Grimsby side that included former Forest central defender Steve Chettle yesterday.

The Stags started brightly when Jake Buxton hit the post from a Neil MacKenzie corner but they fell behind when Alex John-Baptiste upended Chris Thompson in the area and the same player tucked a penalty beyond Jason White.

The Mariners then doubled their lead when David Soames was able to squeeze the ball under the Stags keeper following a cross from Stephen Downes.

The Stags were handed a lifeline nine minutes before half-time when Andy White was fouled in the area and MacKenzie converted a penalty and it took only three minutes of the second half to see Stags level as White converted a cross from substitute Den Hankey.

The victory was completed six minutes from time when White released MacKenzie on the left and he cut inside to fire past Shaun Allaway.

MANSFIELD RESERVES: J White, Clarke, John-Baptiste, Buxton, Gadsby, MacKenzie, Hurst, Williamson (Jones, 45), Carter (Lloyd, 73), A White, Beardsley (Hankey, 45)


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