{ the news }
An independent supporters' website dedicated to Mansfield Town FC
Archived News from July 2015

29th July 2015 23:57

Murray satisfied by draw with Leicester
mansfieldtown.net, 25th July 2015

Boss happy with how our team is shaping up as new season draws closer.

Manager Adam Murray is encouraged at how our players are applying themselves, following today’s 1-1 draw with established Premier League outfit Leicester City.

David Nugent’s neat finish put the Foxes ahead in the early exchanges, but Matt Green netted from the spot - the first penalty that our team have been awarded since the pre-season victory over Notts County last year - to earn us a well-deserved draw.

Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/murray-satisfied-by-draw-with-leicester-2571352.aspx#O34EpZ2sZ40f5fJz.99

“It was always going to be a tough test for us, but we went into it with certain objectives,” said Murray. “We knew at the start of the week these two games [against MK Dons and Leicester City] was always going to be about our defensive structure and our organisation and discipline.

“I think when their goal was scored, it should have been a foul. For 60 minutes we’ve probably more than competed with them and we showed what a good team we can be. When you make [the amount of] changes, it does become a little bit disjointed, but the boys that went on showed how good they can be and it was a good workout.”

Nevertheless, despite today’s encouraging result, our boss insists there is a lot of hard work still to be done before our Sky Bet League Two season-opener against Carlisle United in a fortnight’s time.

He continued: “We’ve spent a lot of time on the training ground getting that organisation and discipline with the shape. Don’t get me wrong, we’re nowhere near where we need to be, but we’re on the right pathway.

“I’ve always said it’s about the process. Once you get the process right, the rest of it takes care of itself. We’ve got a lot of hard work still to do, but we’re happy with where we’re at.”

When discussing fans’ optimism about the upcoming season, Murray said: “Optimism is brilliant and nobody is more optimistic than the players and the staff, because we know what’s in the changing room.

“The balance between optimism and realism is something that we have to keep hold of. We all know what pre-season is like and we’re working hard to make sure that the performances we’ve been putting in over pre-season carry on from August 8th forward, because that’s where it really matters.”

Mitchell Rose, playing in a central-midfield position, was one of those to impress this afternoon and our boss spoke highly of the youngster.

“He’s got everything. He’s fit, strong and powerful and his attitude is spot on,” said Murray. “He’s got every ingredient that I look for and he’s a great person. He’s honest and he wants to win and he cares about playing football.

“When you’ve got that and you put them ingredients together, as long as you keep your work-rate and commitment to the cause at 100%, then it’s a good thing.”


Mansfield Town boss Adam Murray tries to keep a lid on growing optimism
chad.co.uk, by John Lomas, Saturday 25 July 2015

After a second fine display in five days against top class opposition, Mansfield Town boss Adam Murray admitted it was hard keeping a lid on the growing optimism over how well his new-look side can do this season.

After the midweek 1-1 draw with Milton Keynes Dons, Stags more than matched the might of Premier League Leicester City in today’s 1-1 home draw, Mansfield twice hitting the woodwork.


“There is still a lot of hard work to do,” said Murray. “We have two weeks to go and we will now put the foot down.

“Optimism is brilliant and no one is more optimistic than the players and the staff here as we know what we have got in that changing room.

“But we must have a balance between that and realism. We have to work hard to make sure the performances in pre-season carry on to 8th August when it really matters.

“It was always going to be a tough test for us today.

“We wanted to look at our defensive structure and organisation.

“I was disappointed with their goal as it should have been a foul. To be fair he put the ball in the only place in the net it could have gone. That’s Premier League for you.

“But for 60 minutes we more than competed with them and showed what a good team we can be.

“When you start making changes it always becomes disjointed.

“We showed we want to play and there were some strong performances out there and our work rate was terrific.

“We have put in a lot of work on keeping our shape and, while we are nowhere near where we need to be yet, we showed today we are on the right path. Once we get the process right, the results will come.”

He added: “We will look a bit more at our defensive shape but also I think we can get better in the final third where we are having a lot of ball at times and need to make that effective.”

One of Stags’ star performers on the day was summer signing Mitchell Rose, who was in the thick of the midfield action and won the penalty from which Matt Green equalised David Nugent’s early strike.

“Mitchell shows drive from midfield and great energy to get forward,” said Murray. “He has a little bit of everything.

“He is fit, strong and powerful and can play. His attitude is spot on and the key thing for me is that he is a great person and cares about the game of football.”

Mansfield now have two weeks to complete their preparations and Murray said: “It is a fine balance between the work and rest ratio now.

“We may still bring someone else in as we have still got a very small squad. But this squad is becoming something special, so it would have to be the right player to make it better.”

However, Murray said that after his run-out in Thursday’s friendly at Grantham, it was unlikely he would play again.

“It was my first run-out and my last,” he smiled. “It was nine months since I’d played a game, but I think I probably needed it to make up my own mind.

“That was made up when I got cramp at 3am when I was going to the toilet.

“You never know what’s round the corner so I may still register to give us a bit more cover if needed. But I think we have better players than me here now.”

The Leicester game was interrupted in the first half by a streaker from the Foxes end, though he kept his pants on to preserve his modesty.

“I thought the streaker looked like a spitting image of me - perhaps a bit slimmer,”said Murray.

“It was something different wasn’t it? And it got a few people off their seats.

“It was a great day overall. The big thing is we have to give the fans something to shout about and then they have to give us their support. Today that was superb.

“For us to be successful at this football club, they know how big a part they can play.”

Stags now move on to a friendly at Basford United on Tuesday with Murray still to decide whether he will sent a first team or youth side.

He said: “A few boys still need to top their minutes up so I will look at injuries and assess the situation and what environment we are going into over the weekend and then make a decision.”


Rose impressed by team display
mansfieldtown.net, 25th July 2015

Midfielder Mitchell Rose pleased with how far the squad has come over pre-season.

Mansfield Town midfielder Mitchell Rose believes the most eye-opening outcome from Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Leicester City was how much the team has improved as a whole over the summer.

Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/rose-impressed-by-team-display-2571773.aspx#BXP02j1v28XvBcsQ.99

Rose picked up the sponsors’ man of the match award for his combative performance in the heart of the midfield, as Matt Green’s penalty secured a well-deserved draw with Claudio Ranieri’s Leicester City.

The 21-year old spoke about how hard the team had been working to prepare for the visit of their Premier League opponents, and as a result what the fixture has taught him.

Rose said: “The most important thing I learned from the match was how much we have improved. Everything that the manager has drilled in to us from day one of pre-season, we’ve put that together against a very good Premier League team today.

“We were competing with them and they were struggling more against us than we were with them. It was a good overall team performance today.”

Having matched MK Dons player-for-player during Tuesday’s 1-1 draw, the Stags were handed an ever greater task of competing with a side in the top division of English football.

Rose believes that the team’s performance was made up of good communication throughout the side, and working hard in all areas of the field.

Rose continued: “We showed great character, togetherness and everything we wanted to do, we showed in our performance.

“It was difficult when they changed their team up and I had to deal with Jeffrey Schlupp’s pace down the line, but our hard work showed and our ability to stay in the game and grind out a very good result. Each game, each training session and every week we have to push our levels and improve, and today we set ourselves very high standards.”

With that battling mentality and never-say-die attitude, Rose has no worries heading towards the seasons opening game against Carlisle United on Saturday 08 August.

“Our motive will never change; we will always want to go out there and get three points whether that’s against Premier League opposition or League Two” said Rose.

“We just need to keep working and training hard, and what we can take out of today’s game is that we will go right until the end in every game this season.”


Ranieri Pleased With Stags Test
Sat 25 Jul 2015

Leicester City manager Claudio Ranieri was pleased to see his side put under some pressure in their latest pre-season friendly at Mansfield Town.
- Claudio Ranieri pleased to see his Leicester City side put under pressure by Mansfield
- David Nugent scores in a competitive 1-1 draw at One Call Stadium
- Ranieri continues to study options ahead of season opener against Sunderland on 8 August

Leicester City manager Claudio Ranieri was pleased to see his side put under some pressure in their latest pre-season friendly at Mansfield Town.

Read more at http://www.lcfc.com/news/article/ranieri-pleased-with-stags-test-2571372.aspx#CieclDTYCBMeCukc.99

Stepping up their preparations for the new campaign following their midweek win over non-league Lincoln City, Leicester took on a physically imposing Stags side that battled out a hard-fought draw against their Premier League visitors.

A tidy finish from David Nugent gave the Foxes a 10th minute lead, before Matt Green levelled matters from the penalty spot before half time following Dean Hammond's foul on Mitchell Rose.

"Mansfield were a better side than Lincoln, tough players that played strongly and it was important for us to play at the same speed," Claudio reflected on Foxes Player HD.

"It was difficult for us to play football, but I like to see my team under pressure in pre season. "I want a big challenge, but I don't want any players injured, so I'm happy."

Giving half of the squad 60 minutes of playing time before a full outfield change, Ranieri continues to study his options ahead of the Barclays Premier League opener against Sunderland.

Youngsters such as Tom Lawrence, Jack Barmby and Ben Chilwell were once again given the chance to impress, while Ranieri's more established names are also laying down markers.

"I think it's important to give all the players the right level of stamina and that I watch everyone," he said. "Sunderland is very close and I have to choose a first eleven.

"I feel good, I feel confident and I know we need to work hard to keep the club in the Premier League, but I'm very confident we can do that."


Mansfield 1 Leicester City 1 - reaction: Claudio Ranieri confirms he wants to sign new goalkeeper
By James Sharpe, Mercury_Sport, July 25, 2015

Claudio Ranieri now has two goalkeepers at Leicester City - he wants three

Leicester City manager Claudio Ranieri has confirmed he is looking to sign another goalkeeper after Ben Hamer joined Nottingham Forest on a season-long loan.

Hamer joined the Championship side today as the rest of the first-team squad were held to a 1-1 draw at Mansfield Town in the club's second pre-season friendly of the season.

Read more: http://www.leicestermercury.co.uk/Mansfield-1-Leicester-City-1-reaction-Claudio/story-27483293-detail/story.html#ixzz3gwjzDfTc

Hamer made eight Premier League appearances last season, keeping three clean sheets, but found his opportunities limited after the arrival of Mark Schwarzer from Chelsea.

Long-serving Conrad Logan is also no longer at the club, leaving City with two goalkeepers in the squad and, speaking after the game, Ranieri confirmed he would be looking to add another to his ranks.

"Now we are looking for another goalkeeper. Hamer deserves to play, last season when he played he played very well but it wasn't right to maintain him for the third goalkeeper.

"The No.1 is Kasper (Schmeichel), the other is Schwarzer."

City were unable to get the better of their League Two opponents at Field Mill this afternoon as David Nugent's opening strike after 10 minutes was cancelled out by a penalty by Matt Green.

Leicester fielded two different sets of players across both halfs, changing all 10 outfield players on the hour-mark.

Ranieri admitted the Stags had provided his side with a tougher test than Conference side Lincoln City on Tuesday night, which saw Leicester win 3-1.

"Mansfield are much better," said Ranieri. "They are in League Two, they are tough and strong and play very directly. It is good for us to watch how they move, the high ball, the second ball.

"It was good to improve the stamina, especially for those that played an hour. Now must improve together.

"It is important to look at everyone and then I will choose the first XI for the first match of the Premier League against Sunderland."


Okazaki makes second preseason appearance for Leicester
JUL 26, 2015

MANSFIELD, ENGLAND - Japan striker Shinji Okazaki got another preseason run-out with his new Premier League club Leicester City on Saturday but failed to hit the target as the Foxes were held to a 1-1 draw by fourth-tier Mansfield Town.

David Nugent’s curling finish gave Leicester the lead before striker Matt Green leveled for Mansfield from the penalty spot midway through the first half.

Leicester started with a 3-5-2 formation that saw Okazaki partner Andrej Kramaric up front with Nugent in the pocket behind.

All three pressed well and Leicester took the lead on 10 minutes.

Kramaric embarked on a jinking run down the left channel and laid the ball off for Nugent, who steered a right-footed effort into the far corner from the edge of the box.

Okazaki, who made his debut in a 3-1 friendly win over Lincoln City on Tuesday, then played a lovely ball into the path of Kramaric, but the Croatian could not provide the finishing touch.

Okazaki just failed to get his head on a free kick at the end of the first half and five minutes into the second half Leicester fashioned another chance.

Jack Barmby found space on the left to drill a low cross to the far post, but it was just inches ahead of the incoming Okazaki.

“I had chances, I just need to score,” said Okazaki, who was substituted just after an hour as Leicester changed all 10 outfield players.

“When I was at Mainz, I was just focused on scoring goals but it is different here and I have to defend,” said Okazaki, who joined Leicester from German Bundesliga side Mainz last month on a four-year deal thought to be worth around €10 million ($11 million).

“In order to become a better player I have to experience this kind of test. It’s not a bad thing.”



Latest | July 2015