COTTERILL KEEN TO PLAY DOWN STAGS GAME
Cotterill keen to play down Mansfield game
Cheltenham Town manager Steve Cotterill is keen to play down the significance of Tuesday's third division match at Mansfield Town despite both clubs being involved in a neck and neck battle for promotion to Division Two.
Third placed Cheltenham and fourth placed Mansfield go head to head at Field Mill but Cotterill is at pains to point out that the only thing at stake will be three points.
"There is always a lot talked about games like this, particularly in the media," said Cotterill.
"But the fact is that there are no more points at stake when we play Mansfield than in any other game of the season.
"Mansfield have had a very good season, as we have, and we are very much looking forward to the game. Hopefully it will be as entertaining as the match at Whaddon Road earlier in the season."
On that occasion Mansfield raced into a 2-0 lead that Cheltenham pulled back to 2-2 only to lose to a last minute goal. That defeat remains Cheltenham's only reversal at home this season.
Cheltenham will also be keen to bounce back to winning ways after their 1-0 defeat at Macclesfield Town on Saturday.
"I said on Saturday that we never got going and that was the case," said Cotterill.
"At this stage of the season with the games coming thick and fast it is a tall order to expect a team to win every one.
"But we will prepare as well as we can and the players will work as hard as they can. They have been tremendous for nine or ten months of the season and now we are down to the last few weeks."
Cotterill has been forced to change the team due to injuries in recent games and will have a further headache tomorrow as leading scorer Julian Alsop starts a two match suspension.
"I said a couple of weeks ago that the last few games might be a test of our squad strength and that has been the case," he said.
"We had to make changes for the Easter period and the players that came in did a good job. Hopefully that will continue if and when we have to make more changes.
"We will assess the injury situation before the game to see which players are fit and which are not. One or two have been carrying knocks so we will see how they are."
Cotterill also had a word for the club's travelling supporters and highlighted the important role they might have to play.
"I am sure there will be a good crowd at the game so we need our fans to be vocal for us," he said.
"They have a big part to play in determining how we fare in the remaining games this season."
Latest | April 2002