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Archived News from October 2017

5th October 2017 0:23

Stags ready for Derby Day battle
mansfieldtown.net, Thursday 28 September 2017

Mansfield Town will be looking to extend their unbeaten home run to six games by overcoming league leaders Notts County in Saturday's hotly-anticipated local derby at One Call Stadium.

We welcome the Magpies to One Call Stadium on Derby Day (Saturday 30 September, 1.00pm kick-off) with Stags aiming to re-claim a place in the Sky Bet League Two top seven.

And with a prospective victory over Notts County on Saturday, Stags would move onto 19 points from their opening 11 games, the same tally as Rotherham United acquired when Stags' boss Steve Evans won promotion from League Two with the Millers in 2012/13.

The manager said: "If we can bounce back into that play-off group by a good performance on Saturday, which we'll need to give for three points, but if we can do that, we'll be well ahead of schedule.


"It's a long season but it will be good for us if we can get three points on Saturday. It absolutely mirrors to the point for the same number of games that I had for Rotherham, which would be 19 points returned in the same number of games.

"They're top of the league. They're doing fantastically well and this becomes almost like people looking at it as a promotion game. So early in the season, it's ridiculous, but isn't it fantastic for Mansfield Town that we're talking about promotion?

"I remember when I came in here 10 or 11 months ago and we were talking about survival with the chairman. We've made a lot of progress and there'll be a lot more progress to come. I'm looking for my players to show their disappointment in their performance on Saturday."

Local rivals County have enjoyed an excellent start to the season, avoiding defeat since the 3-0 loss to Coventry City on the opening day, and currently lie three points clear at the top of Sky Bet League Two.

The gaffer believes the squad inherited by Magpies' boss Kevin Nolan was a group built for a promotion challenge and he sees Saturday's match as 'a real test' for his side.

"First and foremost, congratulations to Kevin Nolan; what a job he's done. He's added very selectively to the group and he inherited a good squad, it has to be said.

"People forget that the squad that was put together the season before last was to be a promotion squad.

"This is a real tough challenge for us. They're a squad that have been assembled for well over a season, we're a squad that are two or three months old.

"I know people want to dismiss it, but those that dismiss it really don't know what they're talking about when putting a squad together and how long it takes.

"This is the real test, this is the real benchmark. This is the league leaders who have gone around the country turning win, after win, after win in the opening weeks, so it's a big test for us."

Stags will be without defender Zander Diamond (groin injury) and midfielder Joel Byrom (foot injury) but the former Leeds United manager is hopeful of having defender Hayden White available for selection.

"[Hayden White's] got a chance to be fit. We're going to ask him to train at his maximum tomorrow. Zander Diamond will still miss, Joel Byrom will still miss and we've got one or two other knocks in the camp but again, we're not going to speak about them.

"We've still got a reasonable sized squad to deal with three or four injuries and that's always why your squad comes into effect. It has to be said, if we get one or two more, we will be down to kids on the bench."

Supporters will be able to view the manager's news conference on iFollow Stags later today.


Stags boss Evans demands more quality for derby day
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Thursday 28 September 2017

Steve Evans urged his side to up their quality levels when neighbours and leaders Notts County come to town on Saturday.

Stags suffered a surprise 3-0 defeat at Cheltenham Town in midweek which manager Evans also believes was partly down to complacency.

“The roadworks on the M5 on the way home were as exciting as it got for us on Tuesday,” he said. “It was a performance below-par in every aspect needed to win a football match.

Read more at: http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/stags-boss-evans-demands-more-quality-for-derby-day-1-8778500

“Our quality needs to go up a level or two. Until Cheltenham I could never fault my team for effort. “And I think maybe a little bit of complacency came into the trip to Cheltenham with people looking at league tables. “Cheltenham are always a team that gets up for the big games. They will compete with any of the top sides but probably not do so well against the others which makes them Cheltenham.” Stags were on a six-game unbeaten run until Tuesday but has not hot top gear recently and Evans admitted: “Defeats often allow you to not paper over cracks and we have said of our performances in recent weeks we’ve got results, which you can always get with endeavour and willingness. But our quality has been a little bit off it. “It tells you at Cheltenham that if you don’t get either out of the locker then it’s going to be a long night for you. “We were well beaten in the end but we should have been 2-0 up - we had two good chances. “We will learn from it and move on It was another sign of how fired up an opposition is when we go to town.” He added: “Did we deserve to beat Cambridge last week? No. It’s how you want to look at it as a manager. If you want to be negative you can be negative. If you want to be positive you’d have said if we drew against Cambridge you’d have been disappointed but if you got a point on the road at Cheltenham, you’d take it. That could have been two points, but we ended with three. That’s football.” Evans has told his players what he thinks and said: “They have trained very professionally and looked bright. They will certainly need to be bright on Saturday.”


Stags boss Evans knows derby clash with leaders is a real benchmark
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Thursday 28 September 2017

Mansfield Town boss Steve Evans said he was full of admiration for table-topping neighbours Notts County ahead of Saturday’s derby showdown at the One Call Stadium (1pm). While Stags were seeing their six-game run halted by defeat at Cheltenham on Tuesday, the Magpies were reeling off their sixth straight wins at rivals Exeter and Evans admitted: “This is a real test - a real benchmark. “This is the league leaders who have gone around the country turning win after win after win in the opening weeks. “It doesn’t put any pressure on us. Nothing will be won or lost on Saturday. READ OUR BIG MATCH PREVIEW “If Notts come here, do a job, put on a performance and get a result, does it mean they are going to get promoted? I have seen a lot better teams further clear than this and not got over the line. It’s a long season. “But, currently Notts deserve comfortably to be league leaders.” Notts boss Kevin Nolan saw his side draw 0-0 with the Stags in his first game in charge last season and Evans said: “Congratulations to Kevin - what a job he has done. “He has added selectively to the group, though he did inherit a good squad it has to be said. People forget the squad was put together the season before to be a promotion squad. “They are the best team in the league - the table demonstrates that clearly. More importantly, from the research we do ahead of games, their performances are matching it as well.” He added: “They may be local rivals but that doesn’t take away the respect we have for Kevin and his staff and some of the players on the pitch. “They have some players I know well - Adam Collin in goal who made that penalty save for me that took my former club Rotherham into the Championship - and Rob Milson - who played a massive part in that season as well.” County’s on-loan midfielder Jorge Grant has now scored eight goals already this season, but Evans said it would be wrong to concentrate his side’s efforts on stopping the Forest prospect. “They have too many good players to concentrate on Jorge Grant,” he said. “Jon Stead has always been a top class striker, who has played at the highest level. It doesn’t matter whether they play Alessandro or Forte, either one will complement him. “They’ve got the boy Yates, who we tried to sign on one occasion, and Milson centrally. “They are a good side with options all round the pitch. So it won’t be about one man.” He continued: “You have two clubs here on Saturday who have not had the greatest seasons in recent times. But they’re top of the league and doing fantastically well. “People are looking on this this almost as a promotion game which, so early in the season, is ridiculous. But isn’t it fantastic for Mansfield Town that we are talking about promotion? “When I came here 10 months ago we were talking about survival so we’ve made a lot of progress - and there is a lot more progress to come.” A win would have an extra special significance for Evans. “It would be good for us to get three points on Saturday as it would absolutely mirror the 19 points for the same number of games I had when we were promoted at Rotherham,” he said. “But this is a really tough challenge for us. They are a squad that has been assembled for well over a season. “We are a squad that are two or three months old, though I know some people want to dismiss that. “Those that do dismiss it really don’t know what they’re thinking about when it comes to putting a squad together and how long it takes. “I repeat, whether we win on Saturday or not, we will be a much better team results-wise in the second half of the season. “If we can bounce back into that play-off group on Saturday and put on a good performance to get three points we will be way ahead of schedule.”

Read more at: http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/stags-boss-evans-knows-derby-clash-with-leaders-is-a-real-benchmark-1-8778343


Evans will be on derby bench, despite midweek dimissal
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Thursday 28 September 2017

Mansfield Town manager Steve Evans said he would be on the bench for Saturday’s local derby against Notts County, despite his dismissal during Tuesday’s 3-0 defeat at Cheltenham. Evans was sent to the stands after his latest fall-out with the match officials and today said: “I have heard nothing yet, but one million per cent I will be down there on the bench on Saturday. “What will happen is I will get a letter from the Football Association - it won’t be talking about my caps as I never got any - and it will another little visit down to Wembley Stadium in due course. “We will go there and we will have an opinion. “The fourth official had an opinion - not backed up by anyone else. So it’s probably two or three from our bench versus the fourth official. “We won’t endorse but we will respect the views and I am sure I will get a full, fair hearing when that letter eventually comes.”

Read more at: http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/evans-will-be-on-derby-bench-despite-midweek-dimissal-1-8778519


White has chance of derby day return for Stags
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Thursday 28 September 2017

Skipper Zander Diamond and midfielder Joel Byrom will both again be sidelined this weekend for the big local derby with Notts County on Saturday. But right back Hayden White has a chance of a return. Brom (foot) and Diamond (groin) will be at least another 10 days, but manager Steve Evans said: “Hayden has got a chance to be fit. We will ask him to train at his maximum tomorrow. “Zander and Joel will miss out and we have one or two other knocks in the camp. “I think they other two will both be about 10 days or so if they have no set-backs. They’re both fighting hard to be fit.” He added: “We have a reasonably sized squad to deal with three or four injuries. It has to be said if we get one or two more we will be down to having kids on the bench. “This nonsense I hear around the country about Mansfield has got a big squad. I look at the back of programmes and I shake my head as, take the kids out, we are probably one of the smaller squads.”

Read more at: http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/white-has-chance-of-derby-day-return-for-stags-1-8778517


Mirfin wants to reward fans with Derby Day success
mansfieldtown.net, Thursday 28 September 2017

Centre-half David Mirfin wants to give Stags' fans the Derby Day bragging rights by defeating league leaders Notts County in Saturday's eagerly-awaited clash at One Call Stadium (1.00pm kick-off)

The summer signing from Scunthorpe United has made eight appearances for the Stags this term, keeping two clean sheets and scoring his first goal for the club in the opening day draw at Crewe Alexandra.

And the 32-year-old boyhood Sheffield United fan knows all about local derbies and wants to give Stags' supporters a reason to be happy on Saturday afternoon.

"You want to give your fans those bragging rights on a Monday morning. That is a great feeling to have as a footballer when you walk off and see how happy they are and knowing family, friends and work colleagues can come in on a Monday morning with a smile on their face," Mirfin said.


"It's louder, the fans are more up for it, you normally get more away support as well. As soon as the [first] whistle goes, you'll see challenges and effort and stuff and that will get reflected in the game.

"At the end of the game, it's three points and that's what we're there to win."

A season-high attendance is expected at One Call Stadium on Saturday and the former Huddersfield Town man wants to put in a performance to encourage the more casual fans to attend matches on a regular basis.

"The fans that come that might not normally come, you want them to enjoy it and want to come back again.

"You want to play in front of bigger crowds and it's the perfect game to do that.

"Fans that don't normally come might want to come back again and see you on a Tuesday night to someone that they might not necessarily want to come and watch."

County are currently the in-form team in Sky Bet League Two with an unbeaten run of nine games and Mirfin believes the prospect of defeating a team who are enjoying a purple patch provides players with an added incentive.

"They're (Notts County) laying down their marker and probably every other team in the league has looked up and though they weren't expecting that.

"I think as a team that's coming up against a team in form, you want to be the ones that beat them. Add to that an early kick-off [against] local rivals, it's all adding up to a game that every player wants to play in.

"You do enjoy as a defender going up against people that are a little bit more prolific and are scoring goals because you want to be the one that stops them scoring. I think that will be all over the pitch; our strikers will want to score against a good defence, wingers will want to be full-backs and so on."

Supporters will be able to login to iFollow Stags to view David Mirfin's news conference shortly.


Mirfin wants to shut out former team mates in derby
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Thursday 28 September 2017

Mansfield Town centre half David Mirfin wants to shut out some of his former team mates with a clean sheet against free-scoring neighbours Notts County in Saturday’s derby. “There are a few lads there I have played with before - Jonathan Forte, Jon Stead, Terry Hawkridge - so you know the ability they’ve got,” said Mirfin. “But, as a defender, you do enjoy going up against people that might be a bit more prolific in scoring goals as you want to be the one that stops them. If no one is talking about them after the game you know you’ve done a good job.” Mirfin is impressed by County’s six-game winning streak and said: “Obviously they are laying down their marker and probably every other team in the league has looked up and thought ‘we weren’t expecting that’. “Coming up against a team in form, you want to be the ones who beat them. Added to that they are local rivals, it’s all adding up to be a game that every player will want to play in. “I’ve played in a few derbies and the build-up from the media and fans is probably more than what is inside the camp. Staff always want to prepare the same and not make it more than what it is. “But then as soon as you come out for the game you can just tell it’s a bit more electrifying and fans are louder than normal. “You want to give fans those bragging rights on the Monday morning. It’s a great feeling to have as a footballer when you walk off and see how happy they are. That’s a big part of wanting to get a result on Saturday as well.” Mirfin said the game also represented the perfect chance to quickly put Tuesday’s 3-0 capitulation at Cheltenham Town behind them. “As a group of players we were massively disappointed, not only with the result but how it happened,” he said. “In games previously where we’ve not performed as we’d have wanted, we at least stayed solid and ground results out. “We have to hold out hands up and say we were miles off it. Luckily we’ve got a great chance to put it right on Saturday. “We are full of confidence and it has all the ingredients for a great game. “It’s probably a blank canvas for Saturday who starts and the lads have looked bright in training. The gaffer will be seeing who wants it the most.”

Read more at: http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/mirfin-wants-to-shut-out-former-team-mates-in-derby-1-8778513


Temperament is key
Boss previews derby day

Kevin Nolan wants his team to stick to their guns as they look to extend their superb run with a win in Saturday's local derby against Mansfield Town.

The Notts manager takes his side to the One Call Stadium for the first time since taking charge of the club and will look to draw on his derby experiences as a player ahead of the contest.

"We're going to a really good Mansfield side who have had a tough result in midweek," he said. "They will want to respond and there's no better way to do that than in a derby.

"I'm concentrating on us, hoping we can go there with the confidence, attitude and application we've been playing with recently, but temperament is key more than anything.

"For me it was always about concentrating on what was happening on the field. If you get carried away with the occasion, you start to make mistakes.

"You need a cool head in a hostile environment, which I expect it to be on Saturday. Mansfield will try to make it as difficult as possible for us."


With six straight wins in September, it's been a perfect month for the Magpies.

And Nolan is determined to make it a magnificent seven on Saturday to keep his side at the top of the Sky Bet League Two table.

"After the two wins this week we want to finish it off with another positive result," he said.

"The manner in which we won the games against Lincoln and Exeter was fantastic so we will stick to what we do, try to counter Mansfield's strengths and hit them where we think their weaknesses are.

"We have a fantastic opportunity to get another three points."

The boss confirmed his only absentee for the shortest away trip of the season would be defender Dan Jones, who has a hamstring problem.

Shola Ameobi returned to training earlier this week and is available for selection against the Stags.



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