DAY IS GRATEFUL FOR INTERNATIONAL CALL
by Ian Wilkerson
Defender Rhys Day believes Mansfield Town can only benefit from the
experience he gained from his first trip with the Welsh national team.
The 21-year-old was an unused substitute as Mark Hughes' side went down 2-0
to the United States but Day said there was still plenty of positives he
could take from his involvement. "Even though I didn't manage to get on and
play in the game, it was still a great experience," he said.
"Everything was absolutely first class in terms of the arrangement and the
training was very quick.
"The game itself didn't really go as well as it might have done as we had a
player sent off and that spoiled it a little bit.
"But it was still fantastic just to be involved."
Day received a boost from Hughes after he was given the opportunity to
travel with the squad when regular central defenders Robert Page and Daniel
Gabbidon were involved in the play-offs.
Page played for Sheffield United in the Division One showdown with Wolves
while Gabbidon helped Cardiff City see off QPR.
The Welsh boss has assured Day, who captain's the principality's Under-21
side, that it will not be his last taste of life with the full squad if he
However, Day said his involvement with the squad brought a different
perspective to his outlook on the game.
He said: "Hughes said he was sorry that I wasn't able to get a game but that
I should take it all as part of a learning curve and then I can hopefully be
"It is not just the quality of the players that is high, it is everything
"I was speaking to (Everton's) Mark Pembridge and he said that it was even a
big step up from the Premiership.
"You have to be 100 spot on and anything else at this level will not be good
enough. If you make a mistake you are going to get punished.
"Now I am looking to get a week away for a bit of rest and then the
preparations for next season will really start in earnest.
"My main job now is to make sure I play well for Mansfield and get them out
of Division Three as quickly as possible.
"The only way we are going to be able to do that is if we dig in and work
"Then, we will definitely be able to get out of the division. I've got no
doubts about that."
Latest | May 2003