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Archived News from February 2013

18th February 2013 16:09

Could Ross Dyer return this season for the Stags?
chad.co.uk Saturday 16 February 2013 08:00

DON'T rule Stags striker Ross Dyer out of making a shock appearance before the end of the campaign.


The ex-Forest Green front man suffered a cruciate knee ligament injury on the opening day of the season against Newport which was expected to rule him out until next season.

However, Dyer is doing really well with his running and is ahead of schedule. But Mansfield Town manager Paul Cox said he wouldn't push the player too hard too soon.

“Certainly don't rule out him playing before the season finishes,” said Cox. “But I don't want to put any pressure on Ross. There's a world of difference between running and playing in a game.

“He is doing absolutely fantastically. It's a bit surreal as he took some stick when he was in the side last season, but now fans are coming up and saying how much we have missed him.

“He is a brilliant lad to have in the dressing room. You come in every morning and see the smile on his face and it makes you smile too.

“I would never force a player back too early. I would sit and talk to him one on one.

“I would be very happy to see Ross wait until the summer, get a good pre-season behind him, and come back strong and fit for next season.”


Mansfield Town: "We have to get back on the horse," says boss Paul Cox
Saturday, February 16, 2013
Nottingham Post

MANSFIELD Town boss Paul Cox says his players have got to jump back on the horse – and he does not mean eating it!

The Stags face Cambridge United at home today in the Blue Square Bet Premier and Cox is demanding a response from his side after they lost 2-0 at Newport County on Tuesday night.

That defeat came just three days after Town thrashed Barrow 8-1 on home soil and Cox was given a flash Aston Martin car by the club's chairman John Radford.

"We were very poor over the 90 minutes, but I don't want to be too hard on the lads," said Cox.

"I know it's an old cliché, but I want a response from them now.

"We've still got games in-hand and there is a lot of football to be played.

"I'm more concerned with how we bounce back and us not changing our mind-set.

"As a manager you can go into the dressing-room and throw a few things around, but they are a good set of boys.

"They are an honest set of lads and I just want to make sure that now we're not erratic in our mind-set and that we are focused on a big game today.

"When you fall off the horse you have just got to get back on it."

Mansfield are only one place and three points outside the play-offs, lying sixth in the table.

They have games in-hand on every team above them and Cox has not given up on catching leaders Grimsby, who are 11 points ahead of them but have played two more games.

Many Stags fans are starting to dream of a return to the Football League after seeing their side in the wilderness of non-league since 2008.

"We're in the pack and if we win our games in hand we will be very nicely placed," added Cox.

"We want to be where Grimsby are, that's our goal, but it's not as easy as that."

Read more: http://www.thisisnottingham.co.uk/story-18167595-detail/story.html#ixzz2LBhY2BrP
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Cox looks for reaction
mansfieldtown.net 15th February 2013

Paul Cox has called for a response from his players ahead of Saturday's big game at home to Cambridge United.


The manager saw his side fall to a 2-0 defeat at Newport County on Tuesday night, which broke a string of four winning matches.

“It's a cliché but I want a response this Saturday," Cox said, speaking at hsi weekly press meeting. "We still have games in hand on some clubs around us in the league table and there is still plenty of football to be played from now until the end of the season.

“We can't be erratic now in our mindset, we need to be focussed on Saturday, which is another big game. The lads will have the chance to rectify the performance and result from Tuesday.”

Possibly referring to a knee-jerk reaction of team selection heading into tomorrow's game, Cox said: “I call for a strong mindset from the players and supporters and I want to make sure that at this present time, the strong mindset comes from me as manager and there isn't any erratic reaction from me.

“We weren't up the standards we have set ourselves of late, and they have been high, but realistically there are no panic stations. We have the chance to get bounce back on Saturday in a game which we want to get our teeth into and one which we can use to rectify Tuesday.”

There are no fresh injury concerns in the home camp ahead of tomorrow's game as we head into the match sitting in 6th position, three points off the play-offs but with as many as three games in hand over our promotion rivals. Cambridge lie in 10th


Stags boss Paul Cox to give his players a second chance against Cambridge
chad.co.uk Thursday 14 February 2013

PAUL Cox looks set to give his players the chance to prove Tuesday's 2-0 defeat at Newport County was a one-off blip by not changing his side for Saturday's visit of Cambridge United (3pm).


Stags had won four on the bounce and four successive away games, bagging 13 goals in two games, before Tuesday's 2-0 surrender in the Newport mud, and Cox said: “I thought we let ourselves down the other night.

“But I don't want to be too hard on the lads. Our form over the last eight games has been quite good. It is the old cliché that I now want to see a response from them on Saturday.

“I am more concerned about how we bounce back and how it affects our mindset.

“So the lads will probably have the chance to rectify things on Saturday. If you fall off the horse, you have just got to get back on it.

“I will be watching them all very closely in training and unless I see tired legs, tired minds or for tactical reasons, I won't be changing things for the sake of one defeat. I don't want to rush into stupid decisions.

“But I do have good players champing at the bit to come back in. I left Lindon Meikle out for a rest and he is now a little firecracker waiting to be let loose.”

Cambridge, who beat Stags 4-1 at home earlier this season, arrive looking to bounce back themselves after a 3-0 home loss to Alfreton in midweek, and have won just once in five games to sit 10th


'We were too cautious at Newport,' says Stags assistant-boss Adam Murray
chad.co.uk Friday 15 February 2013

ADAM Murray blamed over-cautiousness for Mansfield Town's 2-0 defeat at Newport on Tuesday night.


And the Stags' player/assistant-manager said tomorrow's visit of Cambridge United was now 'a massive game' as they look to stay in touch with the promotion race.

“After the run we've been on, I don't think we expected that performance on Tuesday, but I think we went there a bit over-cautious,” he said.

“We spent too much time on the back foot and it ended up putting us on our backsides.

“Newport have been up there all season and you have to respect these teams. You can't go gung-ho and play three up front, trying to score four goals away from home. You'd end up losing four or five-nil. We had a game plan but it didn't work.

“That's what this league is all about and now we have to pick ourselves up again. We've agreed we mustn't beat ourselves up too much about Tuesday.

“If we did we'd be carrying it into training and then still have a hangover from it on Saturday. We have to put it down as a one-off bad day at the office.

“Now we have to focus on what is a massive game on Saturday. Cambridge showed at their place what they can do (they beat Stags 4-1) on their day so we know we've got to be on top of our game.”

On a personal note, he added: “Being honest, I have not really enjoyed this season as it's been stop-start. But I have been working hard in training and playing a good run of games so I now feel probably the best I have felt all season.”


Murray relishing U's test
mansfieldtown.net 15th February 2013

Assistant Manager/Skipper Adam Murray insists it is time to put the midweek defeat at Newport County behind us, as we prepare to face Cambridge United at One Call Stadium tomorrow.


Our side slipped to defeat in South Wales for the third season in succession three days ago, as Andy Sandell's spot-kick and Christian Jolley's late strike consigned us to our first league loss on our travels since October.

“Realistically, Newport have been up at the top of the table for most of the season and you have to respect that,” said Murray.

“It was disappointing [to lose] with the run we've been on. We probably went there a little bit too over-cautious and we weren't expecting that outcome.”

He added: “Our game plan didn't work; it was a bad day at the office, but we've got to move on now and go again when we play Cambridge on Saturday.”

Despite having scored 13 goals in our last two home encounters, The U's promise to be a tough proposition for our side, as they romped to a comfortable 4-1 victory over us earlier this term.

However, their patchy form in recent weeks, which continued with a 3-0 midweek loss on home soil to strugglers Alfreton Town, didn't surprise Murray.

He continued: “It didn't surprise me to see Alfreton win there. They can beat anyone on their day. I nickname them 'Tempo Rovers' because when they have it, they are really hard to deal with.

“But Cambridge have also got some good players and they showed it when we went down there earlier this season, so we know what they're capable of.”


Spotlight on Mansfield Town v Cambridge
Friday, February 15, 2013 Nottingham Post

Mansfield: Marriott, Beevers, Jennings, Jones, Dempster, Briscoe, Rhead, Howell, Murray, Daniel, Stevenson, Green. Subs: Sutton, Meikle, Clements, Wright, Redmond, Geohaghon, Thompson, Hutchinson, Tafazolli.


Team news: Jake Speight and Ross Dyer (both knee) remain on the sidelines but otherwise, Mansfield have a clean bill of health. However, after the midweek defeat at Newport, Paul Cox is set to make changes to freshen up his side which means the likes of Lindon Meikle could get a recall.

Cambridge: Ross, Roberts, Coulsen, McAuley, Anderson, Wassmer, Brighton, Jarvis, Shaw, Berry, Reed, Hudson, Gash, Hughes, Pugh, Hedge

Team news: Striker Jamie Reed has joined Blue Square Bet Premier club Cambridge United from York City and is set to line up for the U's again tomorrow at the One Call Stadium with top scorer Tom Elliott and Sam Smith out. Cambridge are also suffering injury problems with. Curtis Haynes-Brown and Harrison Dunk both missing the midweek defeat to Alfreton. With James Jennings having joined the Stags last month, it meant Joe Anderson made his debut at left-back in the week and could start against tomorrow.

One to watch: Michael Gash. The striker has scored 13 goals in 29 appearances this season, including one in the 4-1 win against Mansfield earlier in the season. A lively striker, he has scored seven of those in his last ten outings

Read more: http://www.thisisnottingham.co.uk/story-18155677-detail/story.html#ixzz2KxWcMDf1
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Mansfield Town staying calm as they look to bounce back from Welsh disappointment
Friday, February 15, 2013 Nottingham Post

THERE have been a few times earlier in the season where, after an away defeat, there has been a pumped up and frustrated manager Paul Cox.


Back in August, after the 4-1 reverse at Grimsby, he was livid.

Then, at Cambridge, he emerged to conduct his post-match review of another 4-1 reverse and was almost lost for words.

On both occasions, the performances had been poor. They had been disjointed and opened up another can of questions to be answered.

They also led to big changes in personnel in the weeks that followed, as Cox tried to plot a winning path as the disjointed form continued to hold his side back.

Yet, at the end of Tuesday, he took his time, he sat on the old wooden seats at the back of the stand at Rodney Parade, and offered no excuses.

There was no overriding outburst of anger or frustration, just an honest opinion as he took stock of the situation.

Yes, he could have been sat there after victory and his side finally in the play-off places but instead, defeat had seen Newport open up a six-point gap on the Stags, as they moved up to fourth in the Blue Square Bet Premier after the 2-0 win.

But he wasn't. And he told it as it was. Flat. Below-par. He admitted his side deserved nothing from the game.

However, that is where the criticism ended as he promised no knee-jerk reaction. No wholesale changes.

By Wednesday, it was back to work and the positive and realistic head was plotting a course to promotion.

Tuesday was a setback – nothing more, nothing less. His side had been on a run of seven wins from nine league games, but were thwarted on that occasion.

They had won their previous four away games going into that match, but that record also ended.

But the bigger picture points to plenty to draw on, as the Stags are just three points off Kidderminster in fifth spot with two games in hand.

And, in their last two home games, they have plundered 13 goals, winning 5-0 against Dartford and 8-1 against Barrow.

Unlike earlier in the season when such defeats were seen as the beginning of the end, it was merely moved straight to the dustbin. And maybe, that attitude, refusing to dwell on the past, can be their biggest weapon as they plot a course through the remaining 18 games in their bid to seal a play-off berth.

The fact is, overall, the Stags are in great form, whereas tomorrow's visitors arrive in north Nottinghamshire cutting their budget, suffering injury problems, with one win in five and on the back of a 3-0 home defeat to Alfreton.

Three points at the One Call Stadium tomorrow against Cambridge and the Stags could be in the play-off places.

That is why if Cox does make changes, it will be to freshen things up, with games coming thick and fast every Saturday and Tuesday from now on in.

But while Newport can be put down as an off day, given their recent return of form and looking solid, they have to start producing in games against their promotion rivals.

They have now lost twice to Newport, they lost to leaders Grimsby while honours were even over two games against sixth-placed Kidderminster – one win, one defeat.

But they have beaten third-placed Forest Green and have to play them again, while they also have to meet second-placed Wrexham twice.

Those will be crucial games when it comes to Mansfield's play-off aspirations but, in the meantime, they have to ensure they do not slip-up against the teams in an inferior league position to themselves.

If that happens tomorrow, then maybe Cox will not take such a philosophical view when he conducts his post-match interviews.

In the meantime, one blip should not taint the recent good work and back on home soil, where they have recently been back to their best, they have to draw confidence.

With away games at Hyde, Luton and Lincoln to follow in quick succession, it is crucial they tee themselves up with a solid three points at home and prove why manager Cox was right to remain calm and collected after that midweek defeat

Read more: http://www.thisisnottingham.co.uk/story-18155760-detail/story.html#ixzz2KxWxtJLr
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Money: We're going to have to tinker with U's selection
by Michael Vaughton

Richard Money will leave Cambridge United supporters guessing as to his starting line-up again when they travel to Mansfield tomorrow.

The head coach is still without the services of Tom Elliott as he is yet to return to group training, but the striker, Curtis Haynes-Brown and Harrison Dunk should be fit for next Saturday's home clash with Hereford.

Money is busy hatching a plan that he hopes will get the U's back to winning ways at Field Mill, though it may give fans an impossible job to guess who will be playing where.

"Probably the most difficult thing at the minute is making the players we have available fit the way we play," said Money.

"Just maybe we don't have that, so we might have to look at something else.

"We did something else at Kidderminster on Saturday and, if you like, gave them a game. And we certainly had too many square pegs in round holes on Tuesday to play the way we want to play.

"It's tough at the minute as we're not in a good place, but I'm very confident we will go on another run. That same team that went on a run previously is still here, and there is plenty to back that up.

"But we do need some of them back and we do need to get them fit again to play at match intensity. We're not sure when that will be yet, so in the meantime we need to keep the points total ticking over."

Two straight defeats have left United eight points adrift of the play-offs, but Money is not ruling out a renewed assault on the top five.

"I talked about doing something extraordinary a long time ago and, for a long period, we were doing that," he said.

"It doesn't mean we can't finish it off, just at the minute we're having some troubles. It's in these times you really find out about people.

"It's also these periods that determine where you end up in the table at the end of the season, so it's my job, as always, to pick people up."


Read more: http://www.thisisnottingham.co.uk/story-18157622-detail/story.html#ixzz2KzSKQMV1
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Cox has a near fully-fit squad to choose from with injured duo Ross Dyer and Jake Speight (both knee) remaining the only absentees.

Striker Matt Rhead stepped off the bench on Tuesday and could be in contention for a starting role while Nick Wright and Lindon Meikle are also pushing for inclusion.

Cambridge boss Richard Money is expected to make changes ahead of the trip.

United were thumped 3-0 at home to Alfreton in midweek, forcing Money to consider his options.

On-loan York striker Jamie Reed is likely to continue in attack while new defender Joe Anderson should also retain his place.

Tom Shaw, Blaine Hudson and James Brighton were all introduced after the break on Tuesday and could be handed a starting role next time out.

But forwards Sam Smith and Tom Elliott are both sidelined. Smith is not expected to feature again this season after picking up a hand injury in training, while Elliott is still struggling with a hamstring problem.

The loss meant the U's recorded back-to-back defeats for the first time since November and will be targeting a return to winning ways



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