DEMPSTER, OLEJNIK, NIGEL CLOUGH REACTION
Win was ‘hard-earned’ - manager
mansfieldtown.net, 12 November 2019
Stags’ boss John Dempster was pleased by the ‘hard-earned’ victory his side achieved against Sky Bet League One side Burton Albion to progress to the knockout stages of the Leasing.com Trophy.
Goals by frontman Danny Rose and defender Ryan Sweeney meant that the Stags progressed to the round of 32 in their final Group E fixture at Pirelli Stadium.
The manager praised the efforts of every player who featured in the match as the amber and blue recorded a 2-1 win over the Brewers.
“I thought it was a good match,” he told iFollow Stags. “Both teams tried to play and both teams put everything into the game.
“If you look at both squads today, they were strong for both teams. It was great for us to come out on top again in a difficult away fixture - our away form is good.
“The young lads stepped up today - Clarkey [James Clarke] was immaculate and Alistair Smith was very good in the middle of the pitch.
“They were supported by our senior pro’s who were very encouraging and again they were matched by our brilliant away supporters.
“It was a hard-earned victory that sees us progress to the next stage of another cup competition.
“Bobby [Olejnik], who hasn’t played for a long while, was very good with the ball at his feet and with his shot-stopping.
“The back-three performed very well in and out of possession. So, we did the ugly side well and we also played some very, very good football.
“It’s also brilliant to score from another set play, Ryan Sweeney with his second of the season. We do work on our set plays and it was great to see him pop up with another finish.
“It’s always important to get goals from set plays and if we can add that to the team, our goals tally will look very healthy.”
After making eight alterations to the side that faced Chorley in the Emirates FA Cup, the boss says that the players who featured against Burton are in contention for this Saturday’s league clash away at Macclesfield.
“They [players who featured against Burton] are in contention [for Macclesfield] when you look at the performance levels tonight.
“We were pressing as a team and that first press is really important. We had to press with intensity and I thought we did that tonight.
“It was good to see Jordan Graham (below) come on for Rosey [Danny Rose] because Jord’s been out for a while. He’s a good young player.
“It was a real team effort tonight from the boys who have played more league games and the players that are trying to carve a career for themselves, which was very good to see.”
The boss also spoke of striker Jimmy Knowles, who netted in Mansfield’s recent Leasing.com Trophy clash against Crewe Alexandra, and explained his absence from this evening’s squad.
“Jimmy [Knowles] will be starting for the under-18s in what is a very important FA [Youth] Cup fixture [against Rotherham on Wednesday evening].
“It’s something we take seriously as a football club and we want to give them the best opportunity of progressing into the next round of that.
“Jimmy will play and it would be great to see our supporters come down and support our under-18s.”
John Dempster also provided an injury update on defensive duo Krystian Pearce and Hayden White.
“KP [Krystian Pearce] trained yesterday and he’ll continue to train this week. We want to get him a good week’s training - he’s been working hard, as you can imagine, with his rehab.
“Hayden [White] we expect to be back training with the group within the next week or two.
“And of course, the calibre and character they bring to the squad, they’ll be brilliant additions [when they return to full fitness].”
iFollow Stags subscribers can watch the boss’ interview in full by logging into mansfieldtown.net/ifollow later tonight.
Boss John Dempster delighted as Mansfield Town players stake claims with fine displays in win at Burton Albion
chad.co.uk, Tuesday 12 November 2019
Mansfield Town boss John Dempster was delighted with his much-changed side’s 2-1 Leasing.com Trophy win at League One Burton Albion tonight and said many of them had staked a serious claim for a place at the weekend.
Stags progressed to the knockout stages with this win, despite making eight changes, and Dempster said: “I thought it was a very good football match.
“Both teams tried to play. Both teams put everything into the game.
“We respected the competition. If you look at both squads today they were very strong for both teams and it was great for us to come out on top again in a difficult away fixture.
“Our away form is good and had been all season.
“Players did put themselves in contention for Saturday when you look at the levels of performance today and the effort when we were pressing as a team. It was a real team effort tonight.”
Dempster was particularly pleased with youngsters James Clarke and Alistair Smith’s displays, who did not look out of place among first team stars.
He said: “There were some really good individual performances and I’ve got to say of the young lads that stepped up today, Clarkey was immaculate and Alistair Smith did very well in the middle of the pitch - he’s not played for a while, but he stepped up again.
“They were supported by our senior pros, who were very encouraging.
“That was matched by our away supporters who gave a brilliant reception at the end of another very hard-earned win which again sees us progress into the next stage of the competition.
“Bobby (keeper, Olejnik) has not played for a while but he was very good both with the ball at his feet and with some shot-stopping.
“The back three performed well in and out of possession. At times they had to block shots and put their bodies on the line.
“There were a few crosses coming into the box and I think Burton had four or five corners in the first 10 or 15 minutes.
“So we did the ugly side well today and also played some very, very good football.”
On the goals, he added: “Rosey (Danny Rose) got a goal with a great finish and it was brilliant to score from another set play, that’s Ryan Sweeney’s second goal of the season.
“I was surprised Danny didn’t hit the target with his other chance. He might be a little rusty as he’s been out for a couple of weeks, but having said that, his finish for the goal was sublime.
“To draw the keeper out and dink it over like he did was very impressive and I thought he had a good hour considering he’s not played much.”
Wembley final is the lure says Mansfield Town keeper Bobby Olejnik as Stags progress in Leasing.com Trophy
chad.co.uk, Tuesday 12 November 2019
Mansfield Town goalkeeper Bobby Olejnik said the lure of a Wembley final should be enough for players to take the Leasing.com Trophy seriously as a competition.
He said Stags had carried out manager John Dempster’s game plan to perfection tonight as they progressed to the knockout stages with the 2-1 win at League One Burton Albion.
And, after making some crucial saves, he felt it was another big step on his return from a serious knee injury almost a year ago.
“There is Wembley at the end of this, so there is always that carrot,” he said.
“It’s one of those competitions that some clubs maybe don’t take seriously, but I think the lads did really well tonight and did exactly what the manager asked us to do and we came away with a victory. We carried out his game plan.
“It was massive for me personally. When you come back from a long term injury, 10-11 months out, it’s always nice to get games.
“There is still a lot of work to do on my match fitness and it’s nice to get another 90 minutes as it’s been frustrating recently with games getting called off.”
He added: “I feel good in training and the main thing is I am showing the manager I am ready to play.
“In games like tonight, I wouldn’t be playing if I wasn’t fit. The only way to get concentration is by playing 90 minutes. Overall I feel really good.
“As a keeper you get judged on making saves, but the back five in front of me did an excellent job tonight and so did the players in front of them.”
With Stags’ current No.1 Conrad Logan now also goalkeeping coach at the club, Logan said the three keepers were all pushing each other hard.
“It’s a great goalkeeping environment. Conrad and I have a great relationship and it works perfectly,” he said.
“How well Conrad has been playing recently just shows the environment we’ve got. We all keep pushing each other every day.”
Shot-stopper praises Stags' goalkeeper family
mansfieldtown.net, 12 November 2019
Goalkeeper Bobby Olejnik has praised the ‘great’ goalkeeping environment at Mansfield Town following his side’s 2-1 win over Burton Albion in the Leasing.com Trophy.
John Dempster’s side progressed to the knockout stages of the competition after defeating the League One side at the Pirelli Stadium.
One goal apiece from striker Danny Rose and centre-back Ryan Sweeney was enough to see the amber and blue into the next phase, while Olejnik himself made some fine saves throughout.
And after a restructuring of goalkeeping department in mid-September, the Austrian shot-stopper spoke positively of Conrad Logan who now leads the sessions.
“It’s a great goalkeeping environment,” he started. “Conrad [Logan] and I have a great relationship, and Aidan [Stone] has slipped in too so it works perfectly.
“We’ve got an extra body to do training so that helps with various sessions. From an environment perspective, nothing’s really changed. It’s exactly the same as it was.
“We respect each other, Conrad’s given me great warm-ups and it’s a great environment to be in.
“I think that shows the environment we’ve got, considering how well he’s been playing. Conrad’s got a coaching background so our sessions have structure to them.
“It’s a great environment and every day Conrad makes a great save, Aidan makes a great save and I try to do the same. We’ll keep on pushing each other.”
The 32-year-old also believes it was beneficial to get another 90 minutes under his belt, following his recovery from an ACL injury suffered last December.
“It was massive. When you come back from a long-term injury like myself, it’s always nice to get games.
“There’s still a lot of work to do from a match perspective, including match fitness. I’ve spoken to the physio afterwards and there’s still work to be done, but it’s beneficial to get 90 minutes.
“I feel good in training and that’s one of the main things I’m trying to show the manager - that I’m ready to play. And in games like tonight I’m also trying to show that.”
In addition, the former Exeter City man feels as though his side executed the intended game plan against the Brewers this evening.
“I think it’s one of those competitions where some clubs don’t take it seriously but I think the lads did really well tonight,” Olejnik continued.
“We played exactly how the manager wants us to do and we came away with the victory - and there’s Wembley at the end so there’s always that!
“It’s just one of those as a ‘keeper it’s what you get judged on, making saves. The back five in front of me did an excellent job and so did the players infront of that.
“As I said before, the manager asked us to carry out the game plan, which we did, and obviously came out victorious.”
iFollow Stags subscribers can watch Bobby's interview in full by logging into mansfieldtown.net/ifollow later this evening.
Drewe Broughton - High Performance Consultant @DreweBroughton
Another great performance from the boys. Running stats again so impressive , a great indicator . Some superb football played against a near full strength Burton side.
MANAGER'S VERDICT: MANSFIELD TOWN (H)
burtonalbionfc.co.uk, 12 November 2019
NIGEL Clough said defensive mistakes and missed chances cost his team a place in the last 32 of the Leasing.com Trophy.
The Brewers lost 2-1 to Mansfield Town at the Pirelli Stadium with David Templeton scoring for Albion.
Clough said: “For their first goal we gave the ball away twice within five seconds and if you do that in your own half you are going to get punished. Then we lost a man from a corner and he gets a free header and you are 2-0 down.
“It did feel like shooting practice at times at the end of the first half and their keeper made some great saves and we had balls going across the face of the goal which has been our problem all season.
“Scott Fraser and Colin Daniel have put some brilliant balls across and ultimately we have been lacking someone with the desire and that clinical sort of selfish attitude to say I’m going to get in the six-yard box.”
The Brewers had only needed a draw to go through but were edged out by the visitors.
Clough said: “We got the strongest back four we could with Lucas Akins at right back but when you concede a goal early that changes things and we shuffled things around, got some impetus and then it’s just about missed chances.”
Albion, already depleted by international call ups and injuries, suffered more blows when Jake Buxton and John-Joe O’Toole both had to go off with back problems and David Templeton with a knee injury.
Clough said: “It’s always a blow when you lose players. We are down to the bare bones. Oliver Sarkic and John Brayford both had to come on and neither of those two we wanted to risk tonight.
“The good news now is that we have an international break so we hopefully we can get a few bodies back.”
Latest | November 2019