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Archived News from November 2018

15th November 2018 0:09

Mansfield Town dreaming big as they begin their FA Cup adventure
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Friday 09 November 2018

Manager David Flitcroft said Mansfield Town, and every club involved, will this week be allowed to ‘dream big’ as they begin this season’s FA Cup adventure at home to Charlton Athletic on Sunday (12.45pm). It will be a stiff first round test against the League One high-flyers, but Flitcroft knows the value of a good cup run.

“When you talk about the commercial value of it, it’s massive for football. It keeps our pyramid the best in the world and gives everyone hope,” he said.

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/mansfield-town-dreaming-big-as-they-begin-their-fa-cup-adventure-1-9436843

“Sometimes the FA Cup can save a club. A cup run can keep a club going for years and years. “I don’t think we are good at dreaming big in this country. I think the Americans dream big.

“We seem to suffocate those dreams at a young age with children. We tell them they can’t do this or that. “But the FA Cup gives every fan hope and a chance to dream big as there have been so many upsets and underdog stories that have come true.

“The Champions League is an enormous competition. But with the FA Cup, everyone starts with it and everybody can achieve greatness in it.”

Although they have injury worries and ongoing issues over the protracted sale of the club, Flitcroft has no doubts how big a hurdle Charlton will pose. But he believes the home supporters can be his side’s biggest advantage.

“We’ve got a good pitch and they are a very good footballing team,” he said. “They are coming to a League Two club and I am sure they will be pleasantly surprised what they find.

“They could have got a non-League team where it’s tight and they are disadvantaged. “With what our owners have done here - it’s now a phenomenal set-up and super-professional. So we don’t have that advantage really.

“What we have got is our supporters. When we get this place rocking, as I hope we can on Sunday, then that becomes a factor for teams from a higher level that are expected to win the game. It gives them a problem.”

He added: “They do have injuries to key players. But some of the players they can bring in like Jamie Ward and Nicky Ojose are good players at any level. “This is a brilliant opportunity for us to pit our wits against their players. “They are a fantastic football club with tradition and they have a good manager and a good team who are doing well in League One. “We know they are going to have the ball a bit more than a League Two team that might just get the ball forward really early and play direct football. “They are a really attractive team who want to play through the pitch and want to try to break you down and dismantle you which we have to be on our guard against.”


New setback for injured Mansfield Town midfielder MacDonald
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Friday 09 November 2018

Mansfield Town midfield ace Alex MacDonald has suffered a setback in his bid for fitness. MacDonald returned to training after a knee operation on an injury sustained at Cambridge in mid-September. But he has had to pull out with another problem and outside hopes of having him available for this weekend’s FA Cup tie are over.

“Macca has had a slight setback,” said boss David Flitcroft. “He had come back into training for a couple of days and he was flying. “But he has just tweaked something else in his other knee, which can happen when you have been out that long so you over-compensate on the injury you’re trying to protect.

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/new-setback-for-injured-mansfield-town-midfielder-macdonald-1-9436901

“He’s had a scan and it’s not serious at all. We are just settling him down. It’s set him back a couple of weeks. “We are all gutted he won’t be involved in this FA Cup weekend. “But we don’t want to rush it or the injury becomes prolonged.

“We hope to have him back on the training ground in a week now but, if I’m honest, from all the work we’d been doing with him we thought he’d be involved on Sunday.”

The club are having to keep a lid on the players’ enthusiasm to return for his own good.

“The most difficult thing with Macca is holding him back. We can’t keep the reins on this guy,” smiled Flitcroft. “Football is his life and having him on the training ground for a couple of days last week you could just feel the energy go up and enthusiasm levels go up. He gives everyone a lift and it was brilliant to have him.”


Late decision on Khan fitness for Mansfield Town FA Cup clash
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Friday 09 November 2018

Mansfield Town will make a late decision on the fitness of Otis Khan before deciding if he will rejoin the squad for Sunday’s tough FA Cup first round home clash with Charlton Athletic (12.45pm). The midfielder suffered an Achille’s tendon injury at home to MK Dons and has missed the last two games, though he is now back in training.

“We will leave it right to the wire with Otis,” said manager David Flitcroft. “With it being a Sunday game we are hoping it might give us a small chance to have him in and around what we’re doing. He is on the grass now.

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/late-decision-on-khan-fitness-for-mansfield-town-fa-cup-clash-1-9436899

“To have a player and a component like Otis in your armoury would be brilliant for us as he’s different to anything we’ve got in the squad. He plays in pockets and finds good space.

“He is getting the assists I brought him in for and he is a miss for us. “We have a small glimmer of hope. But Sunday might be too soon. We will make a calculated decision on Saturday afternoon.”


Hamilton believes home advantage is key to Mansfield Town’s FA Cup hopes
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Friday 09 November 2018

CJ Hamilton believes home advantage could be key to Mansfield Town pulling off an FA Cup shock when League One giants Charlton Athletic visit the One Call Stadium on Sunday (12.45pm). The wing back also believes Stags can take inspiration from their 6-1 Carabao Cup demolition of Accrington Stanley earlier this season with Stanley up there in the play-off hunt with the Addicks.

“Charlton are doing very well in League One and are up there in the play-offs. They are a very good team and like to play football,” said Hamilton.

“It will be a tough game, but we are good at home. I am confident that being at home will see us do the job. “We have made it a little fortress here this season, which you have to do when you’re going for promotion. You have to make it that when people come here they are frightened to play here.”

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/hamilton-believes-home-advantage-is-key-to-mansfield-town-s-fa-cup-hopes-1-9436418

He added: “Accrington are also up there around it and they are a good team. If we can play the way we played against them, hopefully we can get a similar result.”

Hamilton is a big fan of the competition and said his dream would be to progress and eventually play away at his boyhood favourites Arsenal. “Everyone likes to go as far as they can in the FA Cup no matter what level you play at. And you always like to draw one of the big boys,” he said.

“I am a big Arsenal fan and I can remember watching the final against Hull City when they were losing. I was at my uncle’s and we went mad when they won it in the end in extra-time.

“Playing at the Emirates would be the dream obviously, but we have to get through this round and the next before they’re in the draw.”

“Playing-wise, my best FA Cup memory so far would be when I played well against Guiseley and set up a couple of goals - one of my first FA Cup games.”

Stags are currently 11 games unbeaten, 10 in the EFL, and showed their mettle with a late winner in Tuesday’s 2-1 home success against Grimsby to move into the play-off spots.

“It was a win we needed to show people we are on our way up there,” he said.

“Everyone just went for it in the second half. Everything came off.” Hamilton set up Tyler Walker’s winner with a superb back post cross and he admitted: “The feeling was just as good as scoring a goal, seeing a team mate score in an important game. You get that buzzing feeling and I was happy to help.

“I thought the first pass that Bish (Neal Bishop) made was going to be intercepted. But luckily it came through to me and I went for the by-line and dug it out for Tyler at the back stick. “Tyler has been brilliant lately. He’s been there when we needed him and score important goals. Fair play to him as he’s been putting in the work on the training field.”

Hamilton has enjoyed playing almost every minute of every game this season, often in an unfamiliar role of wing back. “Everyone is comfortable playing different positions. We are all quite versatile and the gaffer trusts us,” he said.

“I have racked up the minutes this season and I am happy to be playing. “This is the first time I have started a season where I have been playing from the start and luckily enough the gaffer has been trusting me to play in various positions. “I think I’ve done all right but I think I can hit another level yet. I want more assists, more goals and to do more overall for the team. There is definitely another gear to come.”


FA Cup fan Benning confident Mansfield Town will cause Charlton problems
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Tuesday 06 November 2018

Mansfield Town wing back Mal Benning believes he is part of the best squad of his career and they have every chance of FA Cup progress this Sunday when League One giants Charlton Athletic visit in a first round showdown (12.45pm). The Stags are now 11 games unbeaten and Benning believes that Stags can get past the Addicks if they can match the pace at which the visitors play.

Benning is a huge fan of the competition, and said: “It’s a very, very big cup to be involved in. Obviously I’ve watched it growing up as a kid and if you get to the later rounds, you get to play some big clubs.

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/fa-cup-fan-benning-confident-mansfield-town-will-cause-charlton-problems-1-9432702

“Last season was probably my best season in it so far - we were one game away from playing Manchester City. So hopefully this year we can go a step further. “Drawing a big name is a big carrot, but as a sportsman you just want to win every game and get as far as you can.”

He added: “Charlton are high up in the League One table, so we are expecting a tough match. They are a very big club. “But I am sure if we are on it on the day, we can get through to the next round.

“I don’t think there is that much difference between the League One and League Two standards really, just the tempo and playing the ball on the floor. “After playing in League Two on loan from Walsall for a while, when I went back to League One I found it a faster tempo.

“But I think our squad is very good and I think we can match a League One side here. “It will be a footballing game - I don’t think there will be much hustle and bustle.”

Benning believes Mansfield have every chance of success this season, saying: “I think this is probably the best squad I’ve been involved in. “The squad in my last year at Walsall was one of the best. But in my four years at Mansfield this is the best team and best squad and some of the football we’ve played this season portrays that.

“We have quality in every department and great competition for places.”

He also believes boss David Flitcroft’s methodology of concentrating more on his own side than worrying about the opposition is the right way to go about things. “We focus on ourselves much more than focusing on the opposition, which I think is much better,” he said. “If we focus on ourselves more then we know what we are good at and we can put that into games. “The gaffer, Futch (assistant boss Ben Futcher) and the training staff will know all about Charlton. “But on the training ground it will be more about us and how we can exploit their certain weaknesses. “It won’t be worrying about them, it will be about us being good on the ball and being good on the day.”

After four of the last five games being away from home, last night’s 2-1 home win over Grimsby was the start of four successive home games. “It has been tough with all these away games with all the stop-overs and Tuesday nights, though preparation has been top class,” said Benning. “But I love playing at home and hopefully we can now give the home fans some good results.”


Bowyer on Billy Clarke's return for Mansfield FA Cup tie

Billy Clarke will be travelling to Mansfield as we face The Stags in our FA Cup first round game on Sunday.

Lee Bowyer confirmed in his press conference this morning that the striker is looking forward to breaking back in to the team.

He said: "He’ll be involved Sunday. It’s good to have him back in and around the squad."

Bowyer's full interview will be available on Valley Pass this afternoon.

Bowyer went on to discuss how he is “slowly but surely” making his way back into the fold and is training with the squad.

Ahead of Sunday's game the manager did admit that the striker is still facing the effects of his lay off. “He’s not back to where he was (last season), he is still a bit off that, but he’s a good lad and he’ll keep working hard and we’ll keep pushing him.”

The Addicks boss is hoping that Billy Clarke can make a speedy return and is hoping he’ll be back in form “sooner rather than later”.

Mansfield, who currently sit seventh in League Two and are unbeaten in 11, will provide worthy competition for the Irishman in a game Bowyer insisted was intended to be chosen for his return.

“This was always the plan, to introduce him into this game and he’s ready to get involved so it’s good for him.”

Clarke was on target for the U23s, netting a thunderous volley as they shared a draw with Bristol City earlier this week and Bowyer was more than happy for the front man. “It’s a relief, I’m pleased for him because he’s worked so hard.”

Charlton will make the trip to Mansfield on Sunday as they kick-off their FA Cup bid.

Article by Brandon Smith


FA CUP PREVIEW - Mansfield Town v Charlton

Charlton will look to make it three straight wins when they make the journey to Mansfield Town this Sunday as we face the Nottinghamshire outfit in our first Emirates FA Cup fixture this season (12:45pm).

Charlton have produced two fine displays recently with comfortable victories against Doncaster Rovers and Walsall in our League One campaign, although the focus is now on the cup and Mansfield who have shown impressive form as of late.

Unbeaten in 11, he Stags currently sit seventh in the Sky Bet League Two table and will no doubt be raring to replicate that form in their FA Cup bid.

Lee Bowyer has expressed in his pre-match interview his desire to introduce striker Billy Clarke back into the side as the Addicks deal with the recent double injury blow of fellow frontman Igor Vetokele and midfielder Josh Cullen.

Clarke, who had been subjected to a long stint out with injury, will be hoping to hit the ground running against Mansfield.

Alongside Vetokele and Josh Cullen in the treatment room is Patrick Bauer and Ben Reeves who are out of contention for the cup tie. There is welcoming news in that Anfernee Dijksteel is expected to be available for selection at Mansfield.

Mansfield are expected to be without midfielder Alex MacDonald through a Knee Injury, also out of contention for the match is defender David Mirfin and midfielder Otis Khan.

Around 480 Addicks have secured their place for the trip to Nottinghamshire and Mansfield have confirmed that they will be selling tickets on the afternoon of the game at the price of £17 per adult, £12 for concessions (over 65 and U18s) and £7 for under 11’s.

Lee Bowyer: “It’ll be nice if we can have a bit of a run in the cup, but we have to be realistic and be careful at the moment with the injuries that we keep picking up, so hopefully we can get a bit of luck with this.”

Read more at https://www.cafc.co.uk/news/view/5be5b11616e0e/fa-cup-preview-mansfield-town-v-charlton



Latest | November 2018