INJURY UPDATE: WHITE NOT AS BAD AS FEARED
We will turn this around, says boss
mansfieldtown.net, Tuesday, 21st January 2020
Manager Graham Coughlan says the ‘hard work’ being put in on the training ground by his players leads to him being ‘confident’ that the Stags can turn their form around.
The boss’ comments follow a positive performance away at Plymouth Argyle, where a lack of a clinical edge in front of goal was the difference between the two sides.
Despite recent results, the former Bristol Rovers’ chief has expressed his ‘confidence’ in his players, as their statistics are going ‘through the roof’ in training.
“We obviously want to work on the clean sheets,” he began. “Offensively, we’re very strong. We work a lot on transitions.
“The amount of chances we’re creating in each game must be double figures. We just need to find that conviction and killer instinct in front of goal, and that continuity and consistency in front of our own goal.
“What has happened between boxes has been really pleasing on the eye and we are creating, but it’s just that confidence and continuity to put the ball in the back of the net.
“The lads are looking better and lasting longer in games - their mileage and numbers are going through the roof, to be quite honest.
“They have worked hard and bought into everything we’ve asked of them. Apart from results, it’s been enjoyable.
“I’m a bad loser and I like winning games of football - that’s what I’m employed for. But I’ve been in the game for a long time and I’m confident that this [form] will turn.
“I have every confidence in the lads and the process that we’ve put in place. When it turns, we’ll go on a good little run.
“I’m a big believer in ‘you train as you play, play as you train.’ It all goes hand-in-hand. You have to put in the hours Monday to Friday and have the desire in your training sessions.
“We’re trying to change the mentality and the thought process, which is not easy, but we’ll get there.”
The manager also spoke of his side’s ‘targets,’ with the short-term aim to reach 50 points for the season.
“You want to get to 50 points and reset. When you get to 50 points you can reset your goals and targets,” added the boss.
“You’re always chasing targets and our first one this season is the 50-point mark. When we get to that, we’ll realign the goals and set new targets.
“We are where we are for a reason - we’re not scoring enough goals or keeping enough clean sheets.
“I’m confident that we will finish the season strongly and turn our season around. Yes, we are going through a tough time, but we will change it and we will get there.”
Looking back on the positive display at Plymouth, the manager says that ‘small margins’ separated the sides in the 3-1 defeat.
“I thought we were excellent on Saturday. I thought we executed the game plan perfectly in the first-half apart from the free-kick.
“They are the small margins that are going against us, but we’re really hopeful that lady luck will shine upon us at some stage.
“There is very little you can do but keep working and keep a smile on your face. At this moment in time, the performances have been really pleasing. The only things that are not going in our favour are clean sheets and the results.”
Mansfield welcome high-flyers Bradford City to One Call Stadium on Saturday, and the boss says he would take ‘any sort of win,’ but a clean sheet would give a ‘foundation’ to build upon.
“I’d settle for an ugly 1-0 win. We’ve been playing really well and are very nice to watch offensively.
“But I would settle for that ugly 1-0 win. That clean sheet has to come along at some stage because the lads are working hard enough towards it.
“I would take any win but if we can stick a clean sheet in there as well, it would be a good foundation to build upon.”
As we enter the final furlong of the January transfer window, the manager spoke of possible incomings and outgoings, alongside a few comments on latest signing Harry Charsley (below), who made his debut against Plymouth on Saturday.
“The market is active - it doesn’t really hot up until the last week or two, and we’re entering that period now.
“We have a couple of irons in the fire and there are one or two clubs interested in our players as well.
“Harry [Charsley] is a nice footballer. He’s from a good stock because Everton do it right. He’s neat, he’s tidy and has good legs and energy.
“He’ll fit right into the work ethic that we want to instil in the changing room. He’s fresh and has none of the scars that our lads have possibly been carrying over the last 12 months.
“He’s fresh in the building and should breathe a bit of life into the changing room.”
There was also an injury update on the quartet of Hayden White, Danny Rose, Willem Tomlinson and Kellan Gordon from the boss.
“We’ve had some good news [on White and Rose]. Both players are not too serious. Fingers crossed we should see one, if not two, on the training ground this week.
“Hopefully they’ll be available for selection on Saturday - if it’s not this Saturday, it’ll be the following Saturday.
“I expect him [Tomlinson] to train this week. He’s done all his tests, so I expect him to train.
“Kellan is a bit longer - he’s had a little bit of a setback, which has been a bit of a blow for the lad. But he’ll be a bit longer.”
iFollow Stags subscribers can watch the manager’s interview in full by logging into mansfieldtown.net/ifollow later today.
Confident Mansfield Town boss Graham Coughlan looking for Lady Luck and a first clean sheet
chad.co.uk, By John Lomas, Tuesday, 21st January 2020
Mansfield Town boss Graham Coughlan is confident his side can haul themselves away from an impending relegation battle but admits they need some luck and a clean sheet.
Ahead of Saturday's visit of Bradford City, Stags have been sucked to within five points of the drop zone after another fine display yielded nothing in last weekend's 3-1 defeat at Plymouth Argyle.
“The importance of getting to 50 points as quickly as possible goes without saying,” admitted Coughlan, who has only had one win in his seven games as manager.
“Then you reset the goals and targets and strive for them - every club will do that. You're always chasing targets and our first this season should be the 50-point mark.
“You are where you are for a reason. We're not scoring enough goals and we're not keeping enough clean sheets. So we find ourselves in a precarious position. But I am extremely confident we will finish the season strongly and turn this around.
“I have been in the game a long time and this will definitely turn in our favour. Then you might see our true value and our true worth. When it turns we'll get on a good little run.”
Coughlan said he would be happy with an ugly 1-0 win against Bradford.
“Let's be honest, we've been playing really, really well,” he said. “We've been creating and we are a joy to watch at times offensively. But I would settle for an ugly 1-0 win on Saturday.
“I would take any type of win to be honest, but if we could stick a clean sheet in there as well that would maybe give us a foundation to build upon.
“We are really hopeful that Lady Luck will shine upon us at some stage because we certainly deserve a break of the ball and a bit of luck the way we've been playing and working. You do need a degree of luck to be successful in this game.”
Former Everton midfielder Harry Charsley became the Stags' first January signing on Saturday.
“He is fresh and bears none of the scars that our lads are possibly carrying over the last 12 months and certainly the last six months. He should breath a little bit of life into the changing room,” said Coughlan.
“Otherwise, the market is active but doesn't really hot up until the last week or two.
“We are entering that period now and we have a couple of irons in the fire
“We have had one or two clubs on about one or two of our players as well, so I would expect a bit of movement if not this week then certainly next week.”
‘Train like you play’ urges Graham Couglan as Mansfield Town boss turns up the heat on his under-achieving players
chad.co.uk, By John Lomas
Graham Coughlan is making sure his Mansfield Town players 'train like they play' and urging them to make better use of the multitude of chances they are carving out.
With just one win in 12, Stags desperately need to get some points on the board, starting tomorrow against Bradford City.
But Coughlan is happy they are now looking fitter and creating chances.
“Offensively we are very strong. The amount of chances we are creating per game must be in double figures,” he said.
“We just need to finds that conviction and killer instinct in front of goal and we need to find continuity and consistency in front of our own goal.
“The lads are still doing three training sessions a day and are now lasting longer in games. Their mileage is going through the roof. I believe in training as you play and you have to put in the hours and have that hunger and desire.
“You can't expect to turn up on a Saturday and just switch it on and off.”
He continued: “They have worked hard and bought into everything I have asked. Apart from results, it's been enjoyable.
“But I am a bad loser - I like winning games of football. That's what I am employed for and nobody is happy when we're not winning.”
Stags' latest defeat, a 3-1 loss at in-form Plymouth last Saturday, again saw them dominate but end with nothing to show for it.
“I thought we were excellent on Saturday. I thought our game plan was brilliant and we executed it apart from the free kick in the first half,” he said.
“But I seem to remember us conceding a free kick the week before after also executing a game plan for 50 minutes excellently well.
“So they are the small margins that are going against us.
“There is very little you can do when Lady Luck turns her back on you apart from keep working and keeping your head down, keep a smile on your face, and keep confidence high.
“At this moment in time the performances have been really, really pleasing. The only things that are not going in our favour are clean sheets and the result - and they are paramount to any football club.”
Stags are hopeful that Will Tomlinson, Danny Rose and Hayden White could all have shaken off injuries in time to be in contention tomorrow which would be a major boost.
We’re adapting to demanding training programme - striker
mansfieldtown.net, Tuesday, 21st January 2020
After an initial ‘shock to the system,’ striker Nicky Maynard says that the Stags are now reaping the benefits of manager Graham Coughlan’s ‘demanding’ training regime.
The former Bury frontman is the Stags’ top scorer this season having found the net on 12 occasions this term.
Speaking in Tuesday morning’s news conference at The RH Academy, the 32-year-old says that the Mansfield players have ‘bought into’ new boss Graham Coughlan’s ideas, which include two triple training sessions a week.
“It [triple training sessions] has been a shock to the system,” he told iFollow Stags. “The first triple session, the lads were feeling it a little bit, but in the second week, it wasn’t as tough [to complete].
“The lads are getting used to the demands our bodies are getting used to the demands. We’ve been enjoying it and are feeling a bit fresher on the pitch.
“The gaffer doesn’t want to kill us, but he wants us to push ourselves. It’s good to know that the lads can push themselves and it shows on the pitch. It’s only going to better the team.
“The lads are a hard-working and honest bunch. The gaffer has come in and changed things, it’s a lot different to how it was. We’ve adapted well and hopefully we can go on to end the season strongly.
“We’re a pressing team now and we all need to be on the same wavelength. You can’t press for five minutes then sit off for five minutes, you have to press for however long it takes.
“That’s improved game-by-game since the gaffer has come in. He’s not going to change things overnight, you have to give him time - the lads have bought into it really well.
“We feel that we’re playing a lot better than we have been over the last couple of months.”
Reflecting on Saturday’s defeat to Plymouth, in which Mansfield created several opportunities to find the net, Maynard says the Stags must remain ‘upbeat and positive’ despite the 3-1 defeat.
“We were disappointed with the result because we could have put the game to bed within the first half-an-hour,” he added. “It’s our own fault for not being ruthless enough.
“We just need to make sure we keep hitting the target, which we are doing - their ‘keeper just made a couple of good saves and we should have had a penalty.
“We need to remain upbeat and stay positive. If we keep getting ourselves into those positions, sooner or later, we’ll be scoring three or four rather than missing three or four.
“If you keep feeling sorry for yourself, things are only going to get worse. The only thing we can do is look back on those chances that we’ve had and try to recreate them, asking yourself what you would have done differently.
“The two chances that I had - you’re running through on goal and know you’re going to get a shot off [with the first chance]. It’s just about what type of shot you’re going to have - I tried to dink it but he [Alex Palmer] spread himself well.
“The second one is cleared off the line. My first instinct is to hit the target as I know I’ll beat the ‘keeper, but looking back, should I have lifted it a little bit?
“The truth is I didn’t score and it’s now up to me to put that right with the next chance I get.
“The game plan worked well for us. It was down to the strikers to set the press and we caught them off guard a few times. They had a high line and the ball in behind worked a couple of times.
“We’re on the right track. We’re upbeat and we’ll go into Saturday’s game feeling confident.”
The striker says there is a ‘massive’ desire within the dressing room to correct Mansfield’s indifferent form.
“It’s massive [desire within dressing room to improve form]. We want to improve not just at home but away from home.
“I think the boys want to go into the next game to put the last game to bed. We want to try and go on a run.
“We have to remain upbeat and keep positive. I think if you don’t remain positive, there’s only going to be one end result and that’s another loss.
“Let’s stick together, keep working hard, believing and striving for three points on Saturday.”
iFollow Stags subscribers can watch Nicky’s interview in full by logging into mansfieldtown.net/ifollow.
New fitness levels can help Mansfield Town to safety says striker Nicky Maynard
chad.co.uk, By John Lomas
Mansfield Town striker Nicky Maynard believes the players' new heightened fitness levels will pay dividends as they battle to move up away from the relegation battle.
New manager Graham Coughlan has had his new charges in for triple sessions to condition them for his high pressing game and, although results have not get improved, performances have.
“It has been needed,” said Maynard. “I don't think the lads have fobbed it off for the last six months. But we just do as we are told. We are a hard-working and honest bunch.
“Maybe some of us might have said what we're doing is not enough, but the gaffer has come in and changed things. It's a lot different to how is was.
“We have adapted well and hopefully we can go on to have a strong end to the season.”
Maynard admitted the new regime had been hard.
“It's been a shock to the system,” he said. “The first triple session we had, the lads were feeling it a little bit.
“The first week was tough. But the second week was exactly the same but wasn't as tough. Our bodies are getting used to the demands. Everyone has been enjoying it and we've felt a bit fresher on the pitch.
“The gaffer wants us to push ourselves and it's good to know that the lads can do that and it shows on the pitch.
“Sometimes you think you're too tired to do this or make that extra run, but we've proved we can do it on the training pitch and now we can do it on the pitch. That's only going to better the team.”
Stags are certainly in need of the extra fitness with Coughlan's new 'in their faces' style bound to test stamina.
“We are a pressing team now and we all need to be on the same wavelength to press at the right times and consistently as well,” said Maynard.
“You can't just press for five minutes and then sit off for five minutes. If we're going to press we're going to press for however long it takes.
“I think as a team that's improved a lot game by game since the gaffer's come in and learning what he wants.
Maynard added: “He can't change things overnight or in the space of a week. You've got to give him time.
“The lads have bought into it really well and it can only get better.
“I know the results are not going our way at the minute but we feel we're playing a lot better than we have done.
“We've got to stick together, keep working hard, keep believing and keep striving for three points on a Saturday.”
Mansfield Town on the right track to revive their season believes Nicky Maynard
chad.co.uk, By John Lomas
Nicky Maynard believes struggling Mansfield Town are now on the right track and that, with a slice of much-needed luck, will start to pick up wins.
Stags will be looking to end a run of three defeats at home to fifth-placed Bradford City on Saturday and quickly put last Saturday's 3-1 disappointment at Plymouth, where they failed to take a hatful of chances, behind them.
Striker Maynard said: “We are on the right track. Luck is not on our side at times. But we will go into Saturday's game with confidence and hopefully get the three points.
“We were disappointed with the result at Plymouth, but we could have put the game to bed inside the first half an hour. It was our own fault for not being ruthless enough in their half.
“Then the more or less one chance they've had they've scored and that changes the way the game is going to pan out.
“I think the strikers can be a bit hard on themselves missing chances but first and foremost we have to make sure we keep hitting the target, which we are doing. The keeper made a couple of good saves and we should have had a penalty.
“We need to keep upbeat and remain positive and keep getting ourselves in those positions. Then sooner or later we'll be scoring three or four rather than missing three or four chances. If you start drowning in your sorrows things are only going to get worse.”
Bradford proved a big, physical outfit playing direct in their home win against Stags last month. Maynard expects something similar on Saturday.
“Bradford are that sort of a team in a way though the conditions didn't help that night,” he said.
“With the pitch how it was it was easier to keep the ball in the air than try to play football on the floor.
“Who knows how they are going to play this time? They do have a few good strikers that can create problems.
“I'm sure the gaffer will have a plan and we will look to work on that this week. Hopefully that plan will come to fruition on Saturday and we can get the three points.”
Latest | January 2020