HOLLAND SEARCHES FOR NEW PLAYERS
CHAD VIDEO: Caretaker Holland searches for new Stags players
Muggleton out for couple of weeks
PAUL Holland will this afternoon try to persuade new players to come and help Mansfield Town's relegation battle ahead of Saturday's trip to Bradford City.
The caretaker manager would appear to still be the prime candidate and has been told by club chief executive Stephen Booth to go ahead and strengthen the squad and that he is definitely in charge at Bradford.
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It was believed that up to four candidates would be formally interviewed today, though Holland confirmed this morning he had not been asked for an interview today.
"I am just getting on with it and we will see what happens," he said. "I phoned up every club yesterday and asked which players were available.
"I had a huge list which I have whittled down and I have three or four irons in the fire with permission to talk to the players from their clubs. I just have to persuade them now to come here to a club second from bottom in the League. I have to sell the club to them.
"But I will not bring in anyone for the sake of it just so it looks like I am doing something. They must improve the squad.
"I am looking at every position. If someone can come in who is better than we have in that position I will get them if I can. It is pleasing to be told by the chief executive that I do not have to get players out to bring players in so we may need a bigger bus for Bradford if I am successful!
"But time is tight and, if nothing comes off for Saturday then we have a free week next week and things can start to happen."
Holland has waited patiently for a crack at the manager's job at Field Mill and said: "I am loving it so far.
"I love football and am enjoying the challenge. It was no good moping about things after Billy went on Saturday. I wanted to stamp my authority from day one and be positive and I think the lads showed their backing for me with that performance on Tuesday night.
"I am preparing for Bradford and working as if I am going to be the manager, not just getting things ready for someone else to come in. I want to get things right for me.
"I don't know what would happen if someone else came in. They may want to bring in their own staff. If I don't get the job this time will I ever get the job at all?
"I hope they make a quick decision. Time is running out. If they brought someone new in then it would take him three or four weeks before he knew the players, but I already know them well."
Holland is being helped by veteran keeper Carl Muggleton and youth coach Ivan Hollett and said: "We sat down and had a chat on Monday and we all had ideas and opinions. The lads took them on board very quickly on Tuesday and now Saturday can't come quickly enough."
This morning Holland organised a pre-training film show at the training ground of the unlucky 1-0 home defeat by Hereford on Tuesday.
"We show them when they play badly but I thought it was important to show them how well they played," he said. "We were unlucky not to get a result. I knew we played well, but I watched it all the way through yesterday before I went up to Chester v Bradford and we played even better than I thought."
Despite going a 10th home game without a win, Stags know they deserved at least a point, if not all three, against high-flying Hereford and, in contrast with recent booing, were clapped from the pitch at the end.
"I thought our fans were brilliant on Tuesday night after the game," said Holland.
" It was a fairly upbeat dressing room, even though we had lost. The lads were pleased with how they had played and I think they could see some light at the end of the tunnel."
Now they head for Valley Parade where the home side will be lifted by last night's 1-0 win at Chester but, despite regular home crowds of 13-14,000 have lost three of their last four home games against Dagenham, Rochdale and Bury.
Holland added: "Bradford is a hard place to go and they have a lot of experienced players. But I have seen things that make me think we can cause them problems. And I know they watched us the other night and will be on their guard."
Keith Briggs looks set to return to the squad after missing out on Tuesday with injury, though keeper Muggleton's groin and knee problems will sideline him for a couple of weeks.
"Keith will be back in contention," said Holland. "It was very professional of him the other night to admit he wasn't 100 per cent fit. That's the kind of honesty we need and he ended up losing his place and now it is up to him to try to win it back.
"Carl's injury means another chance for Jason. I though he did very well on Tuesday even though he didn't have a lot to do. He did what he had to do well and I have no problem putting him in on Saturday."
New chance for young Stag Arnold?
With Paul Holland in charge, it seems bright young prospect Nathan Arnold has a real chance of coming in from the cold.
The young winger/striker had only started nine League games under Billy Dearden this season but was thrust straight back into the starting line-up against Hereford on Tuesday and responded with a fine display.
"I thought Nathan deserved his chance and I think very highly of him," said caretaker boss Holland.
"He has been patient and his attitude in training spot on.
Full story at CHAD website here: here
"I wanted him to go out there and express himself and I though he was probably one of our best players on the night."
Season over, but McIntosh offers help to Stags caretaker boss
IT seems unlucky central defender Martin McIntosh may have played his last game for the club this season.
But the injury-stricken Scot has offered his wealth of experience to help caretaker boss Paul Holland in any way he can.
McIntosh's season has been ruined by hamstring and lower back problems and he has managed just 10 starts plus two as substitute.
"Martin has been very honest and has said he will struggle to play again this season," said Holland.
"He is as frustrated as anyone. But I spoke to him on Sunday and he said if there was anything he could do to help me he would which I appreciate.
Full story at CHAD website here: here
"I have taken that on board and will make decisions when I know more myself.
"We brought Martin in at the start of the season as someone experienced who had played a lot of games.
"But he hasn't been able to play since the end of last year and it would take him six to eight weeks to get properly fit again now which would bring us to the end of the season."
Latest | March 2008