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Archived News from December 2013

2nd December 2013 12:29

Sutton out until the New Year
mansfieldtown.net, 28th November 2013

Defender Ritchie Sutton is expected to be sidelined until the New Year after suffering a thigh injury in our midweek match at Burton Albion.

Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/sutton-out-until-the-new-year-1202203.aspx?#tUcVH6wLMDyOXWxO.99

The 27-year-old, who has been an almost ever-present for us this term, limped off after just a quarter of an hour at the Pirelli Stadium.

Boss Paul Cox confirmed the news at his press conference this morning, ahead of our Sky Bet League Two match with Morecambe on Saturday.

“Sutton is going to be [out for] a while as he’s got a tear in his hip flexor,” said our boss.

“It’s like a thigh [injury] and we’re looking at around six weeks, which is what Simon (Murphy, physio) has given him [to recover].

“He’s going to be a big loss, because I think ‘Sutts’ has been very consistent this season.”

Meanwhile, Lee Stevenson sustained a calf injury in midweek - the extent of which as yet is unclear.


twitter, Wed Nov 27, 2013
Ritchie Sutton @suttonra
14cm tear in my thigh...brilliant


Stags boss Cox calls on fans to keep the faith
chad.co.uk, 28/11/2013

Mansfield Town boss Paul Cox is calling on home supporters to get behind the players and cheer them on to victory against Morecambe on Saturday (3pm) as Stags try to end a slump of five straight League defeats and no wins in nine League matches.


A section of fans have been quick to turn on the manager and players at this time of year over the past two seasons, only to see Cox get it right in the end with play-offs and promotion.

Fans who travelled to the defeats at Fleetwood and Burton this week will know their side didn’t deserve to lose either.

But Cox knows the knives are already out for him, and said: “The social media networks will be going into overdrive now and people will question, question. That’s the nature of the beast, that’s football.

“But I have always said let’s see where we are at Christmas and adjust things accordingly. It’s not rocket science that we are doing things for the long haul, not the short term.

“At Eastwood I think we lost about seven defeats on the bounce but ultimately finished one point off the play-offs.

“I know people will be questioning me - and I question myself. You are always self-analytical as are the players.

“I am learning more as a manager like this. You don’t learn anything when things are going well.

“I don’t know if it’s right, but someone told me the other day that my winning record in 2013 is 62 per cent which is an amazing ratio if that’s correct.

“We have been used to winning here as I have created a winning mentality.

“I understand the business and I understand supporters. Managers come and go, chairmen come and go but the supporters are always here - it is their club and they are passionate about it.”

He added: “When I came here, without wanting to sound arrogant, I knew we would be successful and get the club back in the League.

“But anyone who thought we would be 10 points clear at the top by now and heading for the promised land need to get real. This season was never going to be easy.

“This is a tough league and we have only lost the same amount of games so far as Fleetwood. The biggest problem is that they’ve all come in one chunk.

“But three of the five games we’ve lost, we have had 10 men and we have also had injuries.

“We just have to get back on the pony and start winning football matches again.”

Some fans were worried Cox would leave earlier in the season when the club were flying high in the top three. How that has changed in a short space of time.

“Six to eight weeks ago fans were asking me to be loyal when I was being linked with bigger clubs,” he said. “But that is a long time in football. All I ask is that people judge me at the end of the season.

“Our first plan was to get out of the Conference. Now we are in a new plan. We want to build this club and become stronger. We want to lay foundations so, when we have gone, this club in 10, 15, 20 years will be in a healthy position.

“It is at this stage of the season that the players need the supporters. The players are down at the minute and they need a bit of a push in the right direction.

“All you need sometimes is a bit of luck and the ball bouncing in off someone’s backside.

“It will be interesting to see on Saturday, but I think they will get behind them. We have some very good supporters at this club and they will get behind us and we will come through this together.

“Sometimes when things are going wrong you only hear the minority. But I am calling on the majority to get behind the boys and help turn this blip round.

“I want supporters to embrace where we are at the minute. I spoke to some after the Burton game on Tuesday and they said they would be happy to finish fourth from bottom and consolidate in this league.

“Let’s enjoy the ride. No one likes losing. But there is always going to be a period without winning and what happens then dictates to me how far we can realistically take this club.

“Look at how big some of the club are in this League and how big some of the clubs are in the league below us who want to replace us.

“Our results at home have been erratic lately and I want to see it turn back into the fortress it was. We have had some big games there in the last couple of years and our supporters have won us games.”

Stags will be without the suspended Jamie McGuire and the injured Ritchie Sutton with Lee Stevenson also a doubt.

But Ben Hutchinson and Ross Dyer both got 90 minutes under their belts in a 2-2 behind-closed-doors home friendly draw with a Notts County XI yesterday, both also finding the net.


Clucas and Poku video interviews, 28Nov2013:

Clucas tells Jason Harrison that the referee said the ball did hit the Burton player's arm, but it wasn't deliberate so he couldn't give a penalty. Clucas says that some of the Burton playerws admitted it should have been a penalty.


Patient Poku hoping to hang onto Stags shirt

Midfielder Godfrey Poku was delighted to finally made his full Stags debut at Burton in midweek, 17 months after joining the club.


But, whatever happens against Morecambe tomorrow, he is fully aware that fellow ball-winner Jamie McGuire is back from a three-game ban the week after.

“Jamie will be tough competition as he is a brilliant player and someone I play like,” said Poku. “But he is very experienced. If I play on Saturday and play well, hopefully it will give the gaffer a hard decision to make.”

On his debut, he said: “I was delighted, to be fair. It’s been a long time.

“I have been working hard and tried to get my head down. The gaffer told me to work hard and I would get my chance. Finally I got that chance.

“It’s been hard but I have kept going for the club and for my family.

“Making your debut is always great. I was a bit nervous at the beginning but I grew myself into the game and started to feel much better. The lads helped me and encouraged me and talked to me through the game and I think it was a good debut for me.

“The fans were great and it’s nice to do something to please them.

“I am the type of player who gives 100 per cent in what I do. I like to give everything for the club.”

Having signed in the summer of 2012, Poku failed to make the starting XI and ended up on loan at Southport.

“I was a little bit disappointed to go out on loan last season, but happy that I would get games and keep myself fit,” he said. “Then I came back here for my last year. I am out of contract at the end of the season and I know I need to put everything I can into it to stay in the frame.”

despite five straight League defeats, Poku feels there is no crisis brewing.

“We started the season flying, and I don’t think we have anything to panic about. It’s a tight league and if we can get a few wins under our belt, we will soon be up there again,” he said.

“We need to set out our stall like we did at the start of the season, harassing teams, getting in their faces and being hard to play. We need a strong defensive base.”


Clucas: We've got confidence

Frontman Sam Clucas believes that our team will soon start climbing the Sky Bet League Two table.

Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/clucas-weve-got-confidence-1205392.aspx#pZRYOomjVKEku1U2.99

Over the past week, we have slipped to 17th position in the division, following back-to-back defeats at Fleetwood Town and Burton Albion respectively.

Reflecting on the two encounters, Clucas said: “It’s very frustrating and I thought we played well in both games.

“The way we battled back from 4-2 down at Fleetwood, shows the spirit the boys have got. We’ve got confidence to go out and score goals, but it’s just about seeing the game out.

“When we’re at our best, we know that we can compete with any team in this league.”

Our match at the Pirelli Stadium with Burton Albion in midweek was settled by Billy Kee’s late header, but it’s a goal that Clucas feels should not have counted.

“Anyone who saw their goal will say that [we should have been given] a free-kick, but the referee didn’t see the foul,” continued the 23-year-old.

“I thought we should have been awarded a penalty too. I asked the referee and he said the ball hit their players arm and it wasn’t intentional, so he couldn’t give a penalty.

“I thought it was, but it’s one of those things. You can’t do anything about it now. You’ve just got to look forward to the next game, where we can hopefully get three points.”

Clucas added: “Any loss is difficult to take - especially with the run that we’re on, but against the big teams we’ve played very well and deserved to come away with some points.

“It’s very frustrating but we know if we keep sticking to what we’re doing, then the points will come.”

Our current top scorer, who has netted on 10 occasions since joining us from Hereford United in the summer, is also targeting more goals in the coming weeks.

“I’m happy with my goalscoring, but I’d prefer the team to be higher up in the league,” said Clucas. “If I keep on scoring and we start winning again, then I’ll be even happier.

“I’m heading for 20 now, but we’ll see how many I can get altogether.”


Stags’ sharpshooter Clucas calls on side to see out games

Stags’ leading scorer Sam Clucas is calling on his side to see matches out after two late goals proved costly in defeats at Fleetwood and Burton Albion this week.


“It’s very frustrating as we’ve played well both games but perhaps been a bit naïve as we could have seen them both out. But the way we played is looking good for the upcoming games,” he said.

“The way we battled back from 4-2 down at Fleetwood shows the spirit of the boys. You get confidence from scoring goals. We know we’ve got that in us, it’s just about seeing the games out.

“Fleetwood have some big names there, but when we are at our best we know we can compete with any team in this league.

“At Burton, anyone who sees the goal will see it’s a foul. The referee hasn’t seen it and played on, so you can’t blame him. We just move on to the next match.

“We definitely should have had a penalty, too. I asked the ref and he said it hit his arm and wasn’t intentional. That was his opinion. I thought it was a penalty and a few of their players thought it was too.

“Any loss is difficult to take. But we know if we stick at what we are doing, it will come.”

Clucas’ goal at Fleetwood took him to double figures in all competitions and he said: “I am over the moon to reach 10, but I’d prefer the team to be higher in the league. Now I will try to head towards 20 and see how many I can get.

“Confidence is still high and we are still buzzing as a team. We know the results will come and, hopefully, we can go on a bit of a run.

“The fans have been clapping us off which is a good feeling. People don’t realise how much the fans help us or put negativity onto us.”


Murtagh joins Woking on loan
mansfieldtown.net, 28th November 2013

Manager Paul Cox has confirmed that midfielder Keiran Murtagh has joined Woking on a one-month loan.

Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/murtagh-joins-woking-on-loan-1201811.aspx#c7hAsil1Ais7ceKy.99

The 25-year-old, who joined us from Macclesfield Town in the summer, has made four appearances this term.

“[The move] will get him playing and hopefully free up some funds, so we can do something in the market,” said our boss.

“Keiran is still a good player, but [loan moves] help to freshen people up.

“He will be working with ‘Hilly’ (Garry Hill) at Woking, who if I’m being honest, Keiran had his best period as a footballer under.

“Hilly knows how to motivate him and put a smile back on his face, but Keiran knows that there is a massive part for him still to play at this club.”


Murtagh goes out as Stags look to bring in new faces on loans deadline day
chad.co.uk, 28 November 2013

Mansfield Town are hoping to bring in a couple of new faces to ‘freshen things up’ ahead of today’s 5pm loans deadline in time to face Morecambe at One Call Stadium on Saturday.


The Stags, without a win in nine League games and having lost their last five League games, have also allowed midfielder Keiran Murtagh to go out on a month’s loan to Woking.

Manager Paul Cox said: “Keiran has gone out for a month. It will get the kid playing and hopefully free up a bit of finance so we can do something in the market today.

“We will get Jamie McGuire back from suspension after Saturday so I will have to juggle the pack.

“Ross Dyer has been out on loan, freshened up and come back a different player. It is hard to keep everyone happy when they want to be playing matches.

“We are not yet halfway through the season and Keiran still has a massive part to play at this club.”

He added: “I am working hard to try to freshen things up and see if we can bring in one or two players today and do a bit of business.

“Every club will be trying to freshen things up. It’s not about good players becoming bad players overnight. But we had two more limp off on Tuesday night, and players get tired, lose form and then there are those little niggling injuries.

“Two new faces walking into a dressing room will always give player a lift, whatever level you are at.”

Ritchie Sutton looks set to be out for six weeks with a thigh injury after a scan, and Stags are also waiting to see how bad Lee Stevenson’s calf problem is.


Keiran Murtagh has joined Woking on loan


Murtagh Returns to Cards on Loan

Skrill Premier club Woking have re-signed midfielder Keiran Murtagh on loan from Sky Bet League Two side Mansfield Town until January 4th 2014.

Murtagh rejected a contract offer at Macclesfield Town in order to join the Stags ahead of their return to the Football League at the end of last season.

The Antigua & Barbuda international, who made forty-four appearances for the Silkmen last season, boasts exceptional ability on the ball.

The 24-year-old began his career in the academy ranks at Charlton Athletic.

Unfortunate not to be offered a deal at The Valley, he signed for then Conference South side Fisher Athletic in November 2007, and won the young player of the year accolade.

Following trials with Premier League and Championship clubs, Murtagh eventually signed for Yeovil Town and made fifty-nine appearances during a two-year stint at Huish Park.

Spells with Wycombe Wanderers, Cambridge United and Woking then followed, before he signed for Macclesfield in July 2012.

At international level, Murtagh represented the Republic of Ireland at under-17 level, but switched his allegiance to Antigua & Barbuda three years ago.



Latest | December 2013