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Archived News from June 2018

8th June 2018 0:14

Stags strengthen defence with new signing
mansfieldtown.net, 29 May 2018

Mansfield Town manager David Flitcroft has made his first signing as Stags’ boss, with the acquisition of highly-rated defender Matt Preston from Swindon Town.

The Mansfield chief has won the race to sign the commanding centre-half, who turned down offers from a number of clubs to sign for the Stags.

The 23-year-old previously amassed over 40 League One appearances for Walsall, before making the switch to the County Ground last September.

After putting pen to paper the dominant defender told http://www.mansfieldtown.net: “It’s a new challenge for me and I feel like I will thrive under the gaffer and Futch [assistant manager Ben Futcher].

“They are the right mentors for me to improve personally and I enjoyed my time working with them previously at Swindon.

“I feel I have made the best decision for me to keep developing as a player.

Read more at https://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/2018/may/stags-sign-swindon-defender/

“I’ve researched the club and the fans get behind the players here. It’s a massive thing to know that, as a player, you’re coming to a club where the fans are supporting you in the stands.”

Boss David Flitcroft said: “We are delighted to have signed Matt Preston. He’s at a good age, hungry to develop and is ambitious to progress through the leagues with Mansfield Town.

“We are getting a very good defender, who at 23 we believe can only get better and become a fantastic asset for the football club.

“Matt is a very strong central defender who is mobile and can also distribute from the back. He is dominant in both boxes when defending and attacking.

“We feel this a massive coup for the football club and believe Matt can develop into a defender who we believe has the potential to play in the Championship.

“I have worked with Matt before at Swindon, where I loved working with him and he was outstanding in both games against Mansfield last season.

“There were a number of clubs who wanted to sign Matt, but he has a fantastic working relationship with myself and Futch.

“The chairman [John Radford] and Carolyn [Radford, CEO] have really helped to get the deal done and secure Matt, who we believe will be a real acquisition for our club.”


New defender looking forward to reunion with Stags' boss

Newly-signed Stags defender Matt Preston is eager to reunite with manager David Flitcroft and assistant manager Ben Futcher, who he worked under at his previous club Swindon Town.

Preston, who turned down an offer to stay at Swindon, put pen to paper on a deal to bring him to One Call Stadium yesterday.

The centre-back says he is looking forward to working with Stags' boss Flitcroft and assistant manager Futcher again, after being previously signed by the current Mansfield Town boss during his spell with the Robins.

"It’s a new challenge for me and I feel like I will thrive under the gaffer and Futch. They have a lot of experience and I feel like I'm going to learn a lot from them," said Preston.

"They like working hard and I agree with their work regime.

"They are the right mentors for me to improve personally and I enjoyed my time working with them previously at Swindon.

"I feel I have made the best decision for me to keep developing as a player."

Read more at https://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/2018/may/matt-preston-interview/

Preston also spoke highly of the Stags' fans, who he says can expect 'dominant' performances from him in the heart of defence.

"I’ve researched the club and the fans get behind the club. It’s a massive thing to know that, as a player, you’re coming to a club where the fans are supporting you in the stands.

"I know a few players here already like Mal Benning and Omari Sterling-James, and it's those types of things that made me want to join.

"I'd say dominant centre-back would be the number one thing I would say [to describe myself]. I'd like to think I'm quite quick, which as a centre-back is a good thing to have.

"I like to think that if we get the ball down I can play it quite well too."

The defender has plenty of experience in League Two thanks to his playing days with Swindon, and knows exactly how tough the league can be. Despite this, he maintains that he wants to play as much as possible, and feels that the Stags have every chance of promotion next season.

"It [League Two] is a tough division. You have to dig in during a lot of games, and you have to go to places that are not exactly pretty, but when you get there the 1-0 and 2-0 wins are sometimes the best ones.

"The number one thing for me now is game time. The more games you play, the more you learn. There are always little things that you can sharpen up on and I feel like it's game time that adds to that sort of improvement.

"It's nice to get it [the deal] done relatively quickly, it puts your mind at ease because you know what's going to be happening next season. It's a nice feeling.

"Promotion is the number one aim. I know that the gaffer and Futch are on the same wavelength. I feel like the team and the club are very capable of doing it."

iFollow Stags subscribers can watch Matt Preston's answers in full by logging into mansfieldtown.net/ifollow later today.


Stags win race with Swindon as Preston becomes first summer signing
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS

The prospect of working with David Flitcroft and Ben Futcher again was enough to persuade defender Matt Preston to leave Swindon Town to become Mansfield Town’s first summer signing today. Flitcroft and Futcher took the 23-year-old to Swindon last September, though his season was spoiled by injury.

However, new Robins boss Phil Brown - who took over from Flitcroft in March - saw enough in the youngster to offer him a three-year contract at Swindon.

But the former Walsall youngster today opted instead to rejoin Flitcroft and Futcher at the One Call Stadium and he said: “It feels good to sign.

“It’s been a tough decision to leave Swindon, but I feel like it’s the best decision for me moving forward as a player. “I want to carry on developing so I get off to a good start.

“I have worked with the gaffer and Futch before. I enjoyed my time with them at Swindon and they’ve persuaded me (to come here).

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/stags-win-race-with-swindon-as-preston-becomes-first-summer-signing-1-9185211

“I feel like I am going to learn a lot from them, especially with Futch being an ex-centre back himself. They have a lot of experience.

“They know when to be serious and when to be fun and I think you have to get that balance right. Between them they do that. They like working hard and it’s a work regime I agree with.

“I think Futch is a bit of a mentor to me. He’s played a lot of games at a good level. “He’s been there and done that and can teach me what I can and can’t do in certain situations.

“He did that last season and I feel he will carry on doing that. He wants to help me as much as he can.”

There were other factors too in making Preston’s mind up, including the Mansfield supporters. “I know a few of the players here already like Mal Benning and Omari Sterling-James. It’s the little things like that that have persuaded me to join,” he said.

“I did a little bit of research about Mansfield and I know the fans here get behind the club. “It’s things like that which draw a player to it, knowing if you’re playing for a club that the fans are behind you. It’s a massive thing as a player.”

Describing his attributes, Preston said: “I’d say I am a dominant centre back. I’d like to say I was quite quick, which as a centre back is a good thing to have.

“But I’d like to think I can play as well. I’m not just a header and a kicker. If the ball gets down I’d like to think I can play as well.”

Having tasted it last season, he knows what to expect in League Two. “It’s a tough division,” he said.

“There is not a lot of football played by a lot of clubs, but it’s rewarding at the same time as you’ve got to dig in in a lot of games and you’ve got to go to places where it’s not exactly pretty, but when you get there, the 1-0s and 2-0s are sometimes the best wins. “It’s going to be a challenge like anywhere, but the gaffer and Futch are the right mentors for me to try to better myself and hopefully we can go somewhere this season. “The number one thing for me at the minute is game time. “I just want to keep playing games and the more games you play, the more you learn. “There are always little things you need to sharpen up and you need game time to improve them.”

With many players facing uncertain summers, Preston was happy to sort out his future early. He said: “It’s nice being in the office nice and early and knowing what is happening next season. Your mind is at ease. It’s a nice feeling. “Promotion is the number one target. Coming here I know the gaffer and Futch are on the same wavelength and we want to get promoted. “I feel this is a good team and the club are very capable of doing that. “I have one more holiday before we start back and will keep myself ticking over, going to the gym and running, though you’ve got to know when to rest as well. The holiday will do that for me.”


Matt Preston has decided to sign for Mansfield Town after rejecting a contract extension offer from Swindon Town.


by Ben Wills, 29 May 2018

Preston was offered a three-year deal by Phil Brown, but the lure of working with David Flitcroft again proved too much for the centre-back.

Defender Preston was signed by Flitcroft in mid-September last season following a long-term injury to Dion Conroy, and impressed for the club throughout the rest of the campaign.

He made 26 appearances in all competitions for Swindon but had his campaign ended early by injury.

Swindon boss Brown told the BBC last week that if Preston opted to sign for Mansfield, he would pursue Bristol Rovers defender Rollin Menayese, who was on loan at Swindon last season, however Brown did not say whether that would be on a permanent deal or another loan.



22 May 2018

At 59 minutes on the link below, Swindon manager Phil Brown says that Mansfield are in the market to sign centre half Matt Preston



22 May 2018, totalswindon.com, by Ben Wills, @_BenWills

Matt Preston has got a choice between sticking with Swindon Town or working with David Flitcroft again next season.

Preston signed for Swindon in mid-September last season following a long-term injury to Dion Conroy, and impressed for the club throughout the rest of the campaign.

He only penned a deal until the end of the season, however, and now Swindon face a battle to keep the centre-back.

The ex-Walsall man has been offered a new deal by new boss Phil Brown, with the club proposing a three-year deal, however Brown told the BBC on Tuesday night that Mansfield Town, now managed by David Flitcroft, also want Preston.

Brown is hoping Preston will get over his injury problems, which ended his season a few weeks early, and also revealed on Tuesday that if Preston turns Swindon down, the club will aim to bring last-season loanee Rollin Menayese back to the club from Bristol Rovers.

Read more at https://www.totalswindon.com/sport/swindon-town-face-competition-from-mansfield-town-for-matt-prestons-signature/

The manager did not say whether Menayese would return on loan or on a permanent basis, however.

Preston's contract at Swindon officially ends on June 30.

Other story:
During a fans' phone-in to BBC radio Wiltshire, Swindon Town manager Phil Brown fielded questions on whether either of Michael Doughty, Jamie Sendles-White or Harry Toffolo will be returning to Wiltshire this summer.
Michael Doughty and Harry Toffolo have been released by Peterborough United and Millwall respectively following the conclusion of the 2017-18 season, while Jamie Sendles-White is currently at National League South outfit St. Albans City.
All three have been subject of calls from Town fans for a return, and they had their chance to make their feelings known to the boss, as he spoke to the BBC for an hour on Tuesday night.



Stags boss Flitcroft trying to raid former club for centre half Preston
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Wednesday 23 May 2018

Mansfield Town manager David Flitcroft may be about to raid his old club for centre half Matty Preston. But he faces significant competition from the Robins, who want to keep the 23-year-old and have offered him an impressive three-year deal to stay.

Swindon manager Phil Brown said: “Matty is a key player. “The three-year deal I have offered him is not just to compete with Mansfield, who are clearly in the market for him. It’s because of his level of importance.

“We need a rock. We need a backbone right down the middle of the pitch and Matty Preston would start that strong spine off.”

Birmingham-born Preston was signed by the then Swindon boss Flitcroft last September on a deal until the end of the season. He was signed outside the window on a free transfer after Swindon were hit by a lot of injuries at the back and he went on to become Swindon’s best defender.

Flitcroft spoke highly of him every time he got the chance. However, he hasn’t played since February after suffering a knee injury and Swindon really missed his presence at the back end of the season. Brown reported him to be back in training over the final few weeks of the season but he was never fit enough to play.

Now out of contract and originating from the Midlands, a move further back north may suit Preston and Flitcroft is reported to be making attempts to lure him to the One Call Stadium as one of seven potential deals currently on the table for Stags.

Preston was captain of the Walsall youth team when he signed an 18-month professional contract with them in January 2013. A year later he briefly joined up with Icelandic side ÍBV, then spent two months on loan at Northern Premier League side Barwell. He made his debut for the Saddlers in February 2015 and played 41 games for them before being released in summer 2017.

Preston then joined Swindon in September 2017 and impressed until he suffered a serious knee injury - ironically in the 1-0 home win over Mansfield - that ruled him out for the rest of the season.

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/stags-boss-flitcroft-trying-to-raid-former-club-for-centre-half-preston-1-9176540



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