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Archived News from January 2019

6th January 2019 23:49

Watching players celebrate with fans a proud moment - manager
mansfieldtown.net, Tuesday 01 January 2019

Stags’ boss David Flitcroft has said that watching the Mansfield players celebrate with the travelling supporters in today’s win over Grimsby ‘meant a lot’ to him.

The win at Blundell Park - Stags’ first league victory there since 1987 - was watched by 865 Mansfield fans, with the win stretching the unbeaten streak in Sky Bet League Two to 17 matches.

The Mansfield boss says that he was ‘proud’ to watch his charges celebrate with the Stags’ faithful.

“The credit [for the win] has to go to the football club,” he said. “We had a stayover last night which gave us an opportunity to get some recovery into the players.


“It’s really important to be as professional as you can be around Christmas time. The players have committed to everything.

“First ten minutes we weren’t quite at it. Our work wasn’t as careful as it has been. Once we got used to our surroundings, how we’re not three or four goals up, I really don’t know.

“Their ‘keeper was man of the match at our place and he was man of the match today. I felt that if we got that second goal, it was game over. They didn’t look like scoring, but they might have nicked one.

“[Conrad] Logan was a passenger second half, and I thought the three lads at the back were outstanding.

“Again, Bish [Neal Bishop], I don’t know how he keeps doing it. That energy he displays, it almost defies logic a little bit.

“It was a brilliant squad performance, and everyone was committed to this win. I’m really delighted for the players and the supporters.

“To watch the players celebrate with the supporters, that means a lot to me. They have travelled over again in their numbers.

“When you see the players go and celebrate with the supporters who have paid a lot of money to watch football, it gives you a sense of pride.”

Following the victory, the manager praised the professionalism from his players and staff shown in the build-up to today’s match.

“When we talk about momentum, I think pre-season gave us that. It gave us a foundation and a solid platform to work off.

“This is a really tough place to come to [Blundell Park]. They’re young, energetic, and doing exactly what the manager asks.

“I think the conditions helped us a little. Today it was still and calm and the surface was okay. We moved it really well. The word ‘professional’ epitomises the performance and the last 48 hours from the players and staff.

“Everyone has committed to the programme, which is quite an intense programme. We can now really plan and plot through January.”

Up next for the Stags is a trip to in-form Carlisle in Sky Bet League Two on Saturday, a side that David Flitcroft believes will be a ‘tough opponent.’

“Grimsby have picked up and Carlisle are flying. They have a lot of threats. The manager places high demands on himself and on his teams.

“They will be a tough opponent but we have something to protect and honour. The pitch is beautiful up there [Carlisle]. It’s a big pitch.

“It’s a fantastic pitch to move the ball on, and that’s the intent that we’ll go up there with.”

Lastly, the manager gave an update on the club’s stance on transfer activity, with the January window now open for business.

“We do want to add [to the squad in January]. We want to make sure that we have cover and competition.

“The balance of the squad has to be right and your numbers have to be right. It’s vital that you have cover for every position.

“Things will move and change all through January like in every window. It’s like a domino effect where one player moving will loosen off a player somewhere else.

“We have Craig Davies out of action for a few months, and I have no real intel on Alex MacDonald at the moment. They are two very good players for us.

“We have four weeks to make good decisions, and there’s no panic as the squad we have is fantastic. It’s just about making sure we are covered in every position and we have enough attacking threat, midfield guile and defensive cover.”

iFollow Stags subscribers can watch the manager’s interview in full by logging into mansfieldtown.net/ifollow later today.


Flitcroft thrilled as Mansfield Town win at Grimsby

David Flitcroft played a glowing tribute to his players, staff and the Mansfield Town board after the Stags won 1-0 at Grimsby Town on New Year's Day. Neal Bishop's goal was enough to seal the points and keep the Stags in the automatic promotion places.

And Flitcroft said the victory was reward for not only the players and fans but also those behind the scenes.

He said: “The credit has to go to the football club and what we’re trying to do here. We had a hotel last night, a place called Forest Pines, and it gave us the chance to get some good recovery for the players after a really tough and battling game against Swindon. “The club have backed me again when it comes these things - it’s really important you’re as professional as you can be, especially around Christmas and New Year’s Eve, and the club have committed once again to what we’re trying to do.

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/flitcroft-thrilled-as-mansfield-town-win-at-grimsby-1-9517099

“We weren’t quite at it in the first ten minutes and as careful as we should be but once we’d got used to our surroundings and worked Grimsby out, how we’re not then three or four goals up I don’t know. Their keeper was man of the match at our place and again today. “It’s always tentative if you don’t get that second goal and we had chances to do that, and if we had got that it would have been game over, but when you don’t it only takes one moment for them to get level.

“Conrad Logan had very little to do in the second-half, the three at the back were outstanding and the energy that Hayden White and Mal Benning gave us out wide was excellent, and I don’t know how he keeps doing it but the energy that Neal Bishop showed almost defies logic when you look at his legs and his running power and I thought he was phenomenal.

“So it was a brilliant squad performance, everyone was committed to the win and I’m really delighted for the players and the fans, as watching them celebrate together meant a lot to me as the fans had travelled again to support us in numbers and paid a lot of money. To see the players celebrate with them gives me a lot of pride.”

With Stags in such a strong position, Flitcroft says it can't be underestimated how important the momentum gained as long ago as last summer has been to the 17-game unbeaten run the club is now on. He said: “When it comes to momentum, I think pre-season gave us that when it came to building a foundation and a solid platform of work which gave us the basis to be able to go on the kind of run we’re on now.

“But this is a difficult place to come - they’ve won the last five games here and really turned the corner since we beat them at the One Call. They’re young, energetic, do what their manager asks and have a no fear approach and they’ve got some dangerous players, so this is a really good win.

“Everyone committed hugely to this result over the last 48 hours and we can really plot and navigate our way through January.”

Mansfield now head to Carlisle on Saturday with Flitcroft adding: “Grimsby have picked up and Carlisle are flying too and carry a lot of good players. But we have something to protect. The pitch is really good up there and a good surface for us to move the ball on which is what we intend to do.”

As for whether he expects to make any additions to the squad during the transfer window, Flitcroft was open to the possibility. He said: “We do want to add and make sure we have cover and competition. The balance and numbers have to be right for the run-in as it’s crucial for that and it’s the last chance we have to do so.

“It may be we have to move out in order to bring in. We’ve got Craig Davies and Alex MacDonald out injured as well as Bobby Olejnik. We have a month to make some big decisions but there’s not panic as we have a good squad already, it’s just about having good cover in place.”


Stags are a club on the up - Bishop
mansfieldtown.net, Tuesday 01 January 2019

Match-winner Neal Bishop paid homage to everybody associated with Mansfield Town following his side’s 1-0 victory over Grimsby Town.

The Stags’ latest win, that consequently extended their unbeaten league run to 17 games, was made possible courtesy of Bishop’s thunderous header mid-way through the first half.

David Flitcroft’s side were made to work for three points against in-form Grimsby, but it duly arrived alongside their 12th clean sheet in Sky Bet League Two.

Notching his third goal in a Mansfield shirt, Bishop was keen to praise everybody affiliated with the Stags outfit - at all levels.

“At the minute, through everyone, we’re all pulling in the same direction,” he began.


“There are some fantastic characters in the dressing room - a team of winners - that’s instilled from the chairman to the manager.

“The way we celebrated with the supporters at the end, that’s what it is all about. I don’t think we played to our maximum [today] but these are the points you need if you’re to have a successful season.

“Everyone’s pulling in the right direction so long may that continue. It’s a massive respect for the football club to want to do well for the Chairman and the Chief Executive, who pay our wages.

“We want to make this club and the town proud. “

Aside from his match-winning header, the industrious midfielder showcased another brilliant performance in regards to his general play against the Mariners.

And the 37-year-old touched upon his age and just how he continues to power through gamesmanship .

“I don’t like talking about my age but it’s one of them things,” he said, jokingly.

“I just try and do things right off the pitch because when you hit a certain age, let’s be honest, you can’t do the things you could when you were younger. I’ve got to look after myself to give myself the best chance of performing on the pitch.

“I’ve come here to a club that I really want to help, with a manager that’s top notch. Him [Flitcroft] and Futch [Ben Futcher] with the depth they set us up, and prepare us, is really good and I’m really enjoying working under them.

“I think you can see that all the lads are fully behind him and this club, and like I say, it’s going in the right direction. But nobody’s getting carried away.

“We’ve achieved nothing yet because these records mean nothing unless you can add promotion at the end of the season. It’ll be all about where we are come May 4th.”

Bishop then cited the various components to his side’s play as they extended their unbeaten league run in north-east Lincolnshire.

“If you look across our wins we’ve come from behind, we’ve led and we’ve took control of games.

“We’ve got different attributes in the squad to go on and win games of football. That’s shown again today. This probably wasn’t one for the football purists in this division, though.

“There are 46 hard games and on a pitch that’s not giving you much, so we dug in. You can see the desire not to get beat, not to concede and the desire to give these supporters a win.

“It’s a great way to start the year.”

iFollow Stags subscribers can watch Bishop's interview in full by logging into mansfieldtown.net/ifollow later today.


Match-winner Bishop says respect amongst players is key to Mansfield Town form

Neal Bishop says respect and work ethic have been two of the main factors behind Mansfield Town's superb run of form. Bishop netted the winner at Grimsby on New Year's Day to make it 17 games unbeaten for Stags and keep them in the automatic promotion places.

And he firmly believes the values instilled at the club from top to bottom are aiding the promotion bid.

He said: "The respect the gaffer instilled in pre-season for each other has been a key factor, namely to respect and work for your team-mates which I think showed at Grimsby. The lads are willing to break their necks to help out their team-mates.

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/match-winner-bishop-says-respect-amongst-players-is-key-to-mansfield-town-form-1-9517165

“For the chairman, the chief executive and those who pay our wages, we want to make the town proud. I’ve been part of both successful teams and not so successful teams, but at the moment, from the chairman right through to the players and staff, we’re all pulling in the same direction. There are some great characters in the dressing room and we are a team of winners and that’s instilled from the top right through the club. Celebrating with the fans at the end is what it’s all about.

"It’s a working class town and I think the fans can relate to the team when they see everything put into it on the pitch. I’m a football supporter and all I ask from my team is that win, lose or draw, if you can walk off that pitch knowing you couldn’t have given any more then that’s all you want and that’s how I play the game as if you do that you’ll win more than you lose.”

The win at Grimsby saw Bishop score the only goal as he turned in Jacob Mellis's corner midway through the first-half.

He said: "It was a great corner from Jacob Mellis who put all the pace on the ball and it was just about me being able to hit the target, and fortunately enough it went in. “So I’m obviously pleased to get on the scoresheet but it was a massive win for the club and a great start to the year.

“It’s a difficult place to come with them having won the last five home games and it showed at the end what a big win it was. “We have been solid throughout and got a clean sheet which was the basis to go on and win the game.

“If you look at all the wins we’ve come from behind to win games, led and controlled some, and it’s shown we have different attributes to the squad when it comes to how to win games. “It might not have been one for the purists but that’s football in this division for you. The pitch wasn’t great today but we dug in and you could see the desire not to get beaten or to conceded, and to give the fans a win.”

“There’s still a long way to go and these runs mean nothing for now as it’s where you are at the end of the season that matters, but this was a huge result."

On his own form at the age of 37, Bishop says discipline off the pitch is crucial to the part he can still play on it. He said: "I try and do things right off the pitch, which you have to do at my age rather than doing the things you can do at 22 or 23. So I have to look after myself and give myself the best chance of performing on the pitch because that’s what it’s all about. I’ve come to a club run by good people and with a manager I’ve never worked with before but who is top notch and knows what he’s talking about and who the lads are all behind."



Neal Bishop @NealBish
Get in the boys!!!!

Ryan Sweeney @RyanSweeney97_
Right off the baldy

Neal Bishop @NealBish
Straight off the sunroof Sweeney laaaaaaad

John Radford @JRadfordMTFC
Superb way to begin 2019!
Really good performance today and a clean sheet to boot.
Well done to our boys, David and the staff.
Thank you to our fans, for your chants :-) and encouraging support.
We’ll keep moving forward, together.


Grimsby Town manager Michael Jolley reacts to 1-0 defeat against Mansfield Town
Neal Bishop scored the only goal of the game at Blundell Park as Grimsby Town suffered first defeat in five


Michael Jolley says his Grimsby Town side can take pride from their narrow defeat against League Two contenders Mansfield.

Neal Bishop settled the scores with a powerful header on 22 minutes, and that was enough to see the Mariners slip to their first reverse in five.

Sunderland loanee Elliot Embleton twice went close for Town, who will now put in the preparations for their crunch FA Cup Third Round tie at Crystal Palace on Saturday (5.30pm).

Jolley said: “I think we gave it more than a good go. We were playing a team that has lost one game all season and were unbeaten away.


“Despite the injuries and the travelling we have had to do, I thought my players gave absolutely everything to try and get a result from the game.

“The defeat stings like it always does, of course, but there is some pride there in terms of how we went about it.”

Jolley added: “Sometimes as a fan, you are happy when you win and you are sad when you lose.

“But as a manager you have got to see through that.

“There is a bigger picture, which is that we have come a long way in the last several months - that was on show again, but we didn’t get the result to go with it.

“Mansfield are a good team, they have only lost one match all season and you can see that they’ve got some really good players.

“From our perspective, we have got to be proud of the fact we have a group that gives us absolutely everything.

“We’re not going to win every match, but if we can give everything in every match, then that’s a good starting point.”



Latest | January 2019