CLOUGH, RAWSON, KEITH HILL REACTION
Boss praises veteran midfielder in Iron rout
mansfieldtown.net, Saturday 9th April 2022
Mansfield Town manager Nigel Clough says midfielder Stephen Quinn was a ‘shining example of what we wanted to do today’ in a thumping 4-0 win at Scunthorpe this afternoon.
The 36-year-old maestro shone as he bagged his first Sky Bet League Two goal of the season at Sands Venue Stadium.
The boss praised the Irishman’s display in a performance that helped the Stags tighten their grip on the play-off positions.
Speaking to the local media post-match, the gaffer said: “I thought Stephen Quinn was a shining example of what we wanted to do today.
“I’ve just said to the three young midfielders we’ve got in there [the dressing room] in Jason Law, Matty Longstaff and Ryan Stirk, ‘if you’re thinking about having a career in football, look at him’.
“He [Quinn] was the driving force, he got us the victory almost on his own today.”
"He gets angry. He doesn't like losing. And you see that with a couple of disciplinary problems he has. But I'll take that for the desire that he has to win."
Quinn’s display seemed to reflect onto one of his midfield partners, Ryan Stirk. The 22-year-old was also on the scoresheet after a fine run and finish in the first-half.
“[It was] About time he [Stirk] got one,” said the manager.
“I think Stevenage was when he scored last (in November).
“[He showed] A little bit of quality, darting into the box and then tucking it away into the bottom corner.
"I thought he was a little bit lethargic in the first half.
“But we got the goals at good times.”
"But we gave two corners away in the first few minutes. So I wasn't particularly enamoured with the way we played."
The contest at Sands Venue Stadium was an entertaining one. The boss felt his side were clinical, but slightly fortunate to have a three-goal advantage at the interval.
“It [the game] pretty much [had] a bit of everything,” Nigel said.
“In the first 45 minutes, I thought we were a bit fortunate.
“I didn’t think it was a 3-0 first-half.
“We were fortunate with a couple of goals, I thought we played better in the second-half.”
After this afternoon’s victory, Mansfield move up to fourth in Sky Bet League Two, just three points off the automatics having played a game less.
“We don’t know how many victories we need to make the play-offs or even challenge the top three, but we’ll take them [the fixtures] one at a time,” the Stags’ chief said.
“To finish the run of seven [away matches] out of eight [league games], as we’ve just had, it sets us up nicely for the last six games.”
Top scorer Rhys Oates was again not included in the matchday squad due to a thigh problem.
The boss provided an update on his squad’s injury list.
“He’s [Rhys Oates] here today having a bit of treatment.
“He’s had a little jog yesterday but that’s all.
“We’ll just see how him and Jamie Murphy are [as we get closer] towards Friday [against Sutton].
“I would think Rhys Oates is more doubtful [to feature in the Easter weekend fixtures against Sutton and Carlisle] than Jamie Murphy.”
Full-back and scorer of the Stags’ second, Stephen McLaughlin was withdrawn on 45 minutes.
“That was a blow. [It was a] Tight hamstring, we’re not sure of the extent of it at this stage but that was an injury as well,” said the boss.
“With Laps [George Lapslie] being out suspended [and] Ollie Clarke out (groin), we can’t afford too many more [missing matches].”
"But the way James Perch played at left back today, we've got good cover."
"We couldn't play Oli Hawkins today with him being on 13 bookings, but he'll be in contention for Friday."
Mansfield were backed by 2,028 Stags’ supporters this afternoon. Nigel was pleased the away faithful were able to witness a superb result.
“It was nice to see them all here. Enjoy the victory, enjoy the night.
“If nothing else, I think the connection between the team and the supporters has really been strengthened.”
On the pitch invasions: "Yes (it did knock us off our groove). When there's interupptions like that, it's bound to be stop start. I thought the referee handled it brilliantly."
Watch the boss' news conference now by clicking here.
Nigel Clough told Craig Priest for Mansfield 103.2:
On Lapslie's red card appeal: "We were bitterly disappointed because we believed we showed evidence from a different angle to the referee's that George hadn't done what the referee described after the game. The referee told me three times he thought he raked his studs down his shin.
"We provided evidence that showed that didn't happen."
"Danny (Johnson) looked bright and fresh when he came on. I thought it was the right thing to do to try a chip."
"The pitch was difficult today and bobbly. But all you can do is win."
On the game against Sutton: "We owe them one a little bit from the game earlier in the season."
"The lads have got a couple of days off now which they need. We had some tired legs out there today."
Stags’ fans are ‘amazing’, says defender
mansfieldtown.net, Saturday 9th April 2022
Mansfield Town defender Farrend Rawson described the Stags’ away support as ‘amazing’ as the amber and blue recorded their biggest victory of the season in an impressive 4-0 domination of Scunthorpe United.
The Stags cruised to victory thanks to an own goal from Anthony Grant as well as contributions from Mansfield men Stephen McLaughlin, Ryan Stirk and Stephen Quinn.
Speaking of the 2,028 fans who made the trip, Rawson said: “They’ve got to be the best fans at this level. To have two-and-a-half-thousand, or whatever was here today, was amazing.
“They didn’t stop singing and we’re going to need them. We’ve got six big games left, like [having] six cup finals. We’re going to need the fans every step of the way and I’m sure they’ll be there, they’ve never failed us. We’re all in it together.”
The 25-year-old said that despite Scunthorpe’s rock-bottom position in the Sky Bet League Two table, they were always going to try and frustrate the high-flying Stags.
“It was an all-round good performance, a good clean sheet and [it was] nice to get four goals,” he said.
“These can be tough games. They’re scrapping for every point. They’re putting their bodies on the line and they’re giving it everything, so it can be tough.
“The first 15 minutes they were on us but we got through it and our quality shone through in the end.
On the first goal: "I think it was an own goal. The guy was just unlucky and it hit him and gone in the back of the net.
"The first goal is massive in a game like this. We got it and didn't look back."
“We go out there and enjoy ourselves and get on the ball with freedom, there was some good play [from us today].”
“[The stoppage in play due to a pitch invasion by some of the home fans on 74 minutes] didn’t affect us. We knew what we had to do. If anything it gave us a bit of a breather, ten minutes to get our legs back and give it one last push to keep the clean sheet.”
On the final run-in, Rawson said: “We’ve got to take it a game at a time, every game is massive now. Every game's a cup final. This is where [in the table] you want to be fighting [for points]. It’s amazing, I think all the lads are buzzing and every game [we’re] looking forward to it. Hopefully it [our good feeling] continues.”
Watch Faz's interview now by clicking here.
Hill post-Mansfield (H)
First team manager Keith Hill provided his reaction to iFollow Iron after the Iron were beaten 4-0 at home by Mansfield Town on Saturday.
He started by saying: “It was very very frustrating. I’m disappointed with the manner in which we conceded the goals.
“We started the game brightly and were on the front foot. We know they’re an excellent side, a possession-based side and we know they invade the centre of the pitch, but we just didn’t deal with it.
“As a consequence, the mistakes we make for the goals. In the first corner there’s a catalogue of mistakes which leads to a goal but just prior to that they had a free header at the back post.
“What I will say about the players is that they never hid or gave up. They continued to try, continued to work hard, in and out of possession and I hope they learn from these bad experiences and results because it can really affect you and it affects me.
“I try and put the stick-on smile on because I’m trying to encourage the young players. You’ve got to look at Liam Feeney, he’s constantly doing everything he can to make sure he’s supporting the young players and supporting us in our quest to try and do better.
“There’s a disappointment but almost a predictable feeling/outcome - a predictability of what I need to say to you (iFollow Iron) and the players but ultimately the mistakes we made mean we aren’t going to win football matches."
“Even though we were competitive, and we were honest, we weren’t good enough,” he finished.
“They’re an elite opposition,” stated Hill about promotion pushing Mansfield Town.
“They’ve recruited superbly well with the budget they’ve got and they probably deserve to get promoted because of the way they play and the experience they’ve got."
“It’s something for us to strive to be individually and collectively,” he finished.
Hill also revealed that defender Luke Matheson was set to start this afternoon but missed out due to illness.
“Today, once again, I’ve been given the opportunity to give young players an opportunity and I hope they learn from it," he said.
“Prior to the game we had an illness with Luke, so we had to change around about 11am. He’d been sick all night and so Fin (Shrimpton) came in.
“I said to Fin, ‘I do hope you learn from the experience; you were brilliant in training and really good midweek (against Gainsborough Trinity) and previously against Burnley behind closed doors’ so I hope he learns from that experience and then develops."
Speaking on the recall of Shrimpton from Cleethorpes Town and subsequent EFL debut, Hill said: “It’s not just a reward, he’s worked hard on the training pitch and I want to reward players for working hard.
“He wasn’t due to start, he was due to be on the bench and to have a slow introduction. I thought he competed really well but when you’re playing against a side like Mansfield you really do have to look after the ball and make clean and better decisions."
Hill also introduced fellow youngster Jack Moore-Billam and gave an EFL debut to Ethan Young. Reflecting on their performances, he said: “I believe that Ethan Young when he came on was superb and Jack was superb as well.
“There are small glimpses of progress but the big result is the underachieving and the sense of inevitability which hurts me and hurts the players. For that I can only apologise to the supporters. I really want to give the supporters something back."
Midfielder Harvey Cribb also missed the game this afternoon due to injury, Hill revealed.
“He’s got a little bit of a thigh strain or dead leg, we aren’t quite sure at this moment in time but it was a good time for him to rest and evaluate what he’s done so far," he said.
Hear more from Keith Hill and Liam Feeney on iFollow Iron.
Feeney reflects on Mansfield game
Midfielder Liam Feeney has spoken to the press following the defeat to Mansfield Town on Saturday.
The 35-year-old reflected on what was a difficult afternoon for the Iron against the promotion-chasing Stags.
Liam joined the iron in the January transfer window and since then he has been made captain of Keith Hill's side.
Providing his view on the game, he told iFollow Iron: “I think we were playing against the best team in the league and it shows, but I feel we started the game really well again.
“We probably could have had a couple of goals early on and we just conceded some poor goals again. Leaving a mountain to climb.
“But we have to look forward, take some positives out. There were some shining lights with the young boys today who came on and Fin (Finley Shrimpton) who started. It’s a difficult situation for them, but I think some of them put in some really good performances.
“We’ve got to look to build on some of the positives today.
“It’s not an ideal situation for young boys to be coming into, you know ideally you like them to be drafted into a team that is flying high and winning every week. It’s difficult but that’s all we can do. We’ve got to try and put in as much of a performance as we can, as the senior players, to try and bring them along but I think they are dealing with it quite well. Today, I thought some of them put in some really good performances.
“The result aside, you have to take the positives from the performances and building and getting used to each other, and some of the good play we had in the game, because there were spells where their manager wasn’t ultimately happy. They were a couple of goals up at the time but he was still shouting and bawling at them. He wasn’t ultimately happy with the way they were playing because we were doing well in-between the boxes. We should have scored a couple of goals in their box and we’ve got to defend our box better.
“All we can really do is take the positives and look to build."
Superb result today and proud of the 2.000+ supporters who made their voices heard from start to finish.
It’s going to be a hugely exciting last six games of the season.
Latest | April 2022