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Archived News from July 2004

15th July 2004 14:14

mansfieldtown.net reports that Stags Boss Keith Curle was delighted to announce to the official website today that Rhys Day has finally put pen to paper that will keep him at Field Mill for a further two years.
Rhys was asked to stay away form the club for a period of ten days to clear his mind and have a good think about where his future lies. After much consideration the young defender felt that that it would be in his best interest to remain at Field Mill working with Keith Curle and John Gannon as this would offer him the best opportunity to build on his already attractive career.
"I spent the best part of five hours on the phone to Rhys and his Agent yesterday talking through the offer and Rhys felt that he would like to stay at this football club with myself and Ganns as he believed we would be able to help him further his footballing education." Curle told mansfieldtown.net.
"I asked Rhys to stay away for ten days as earlier reported to allow him to think about what he felt was best for him. This meant he had the opportunity to listen to other offers from different clubs, which he did but after careful consideration I am pleased to say he has decided to stay at this football club.
If it had been all about money Rhys would have been better off going elsewhere as there were clubs offering considerably more than us but we are in a position to offer Rhys plenty of first team competitive football to further his education and this is something that the player, his father and his agent all agreed was the best move he could make.
"I would like to say a thank you to the chairman who put the finishing touches to the deal this morning. After the lengthy conversations yesterday (Wednesday) all that remained was to cross the 'T's' and dot the 'I's' which the Chairman did this morning.
Rhys Day has agreed on a two year deal and I am absolutely delighted at his decision to stay, he is a talented player with a lot of potential and like Rhys I believe that I can bring the best out o him" added Curle.
Rhys added:
"It has been a confusing time the last ten days or so as so much has been going on. I had received offers from elsewhere, some with more money but I felt that I would be better of staying at Mansfield because I know that the Gaffer and Ganns are in a position to offer me what I really want - regular football and career opportunities"
Earlier story:
CHAD website, 14Jul04
IT'S decision day for Rhys Day today when he meets Stags boss Keith Curle to discuss his future as Mansfield Town look forward to their first home pre-season friendly with Stoke City this Saturday (3pm).
The out-of-contract Welsh U21 central defender was told to stay away from Field Mill for 10 days to decide what he wanted to do after stalling on a new deal.
In the meantime he has been linked with League One side Hartlepool United and Curle confirmed a formal £5,000 bid had been turned down this week.
Day was due back in for talks on Monday but Curle said: "Unfortunately, Rhys has suffered a bereavement - someone close to him - and we have now arranged for him, his agent and his father to speak with me on Wednesday morning (today).
"We did have a bid from Hartlepool but that's a non-starter as far as I am concerned. I don't want Rhys Day to leave this football club
"I know Rhys is being tempted by the chance to play for a club in a higher division. But he is still on a learning curve with only 40 or 50 games under his belt.
"He has to make the right decision for himself and, ultimately, it is down to him. But I believe he still needs the right coaching from the right manager and this football club is the place I believe he needs to be"
Curle, who watched his side coast to a 7-2 success in their first pre-season game at non-League St Blazey in Cornwall last Thursday (report on page 150), has taken in five more trialists this week as he searches for the right pieces for his jigsaw.
One player he is still hopeful of signing is Northampton Town's Derek Asamoah.
A £5,000 price tag on the out-of-contract striker has been the stumbling block and Curle said: "The matter is now betwen the two chairmen.
"I would like to bring the player here but I am mindful that there is no transfer market as such at this level any more.
"We want him here and the player wants to come. But we won't be held over a barrel.
"I don't believe, at the end of the day, that Northampton would want to keep a player who doesn't want to be there when they could free up his wages for someone else.
"Sometimes you have to wait and be patient. I am hopeful we will get him here. Derek is the right age, has the right amount of ability, pace to spare and an eye for goal."
Curle is also chasing two other strikers from higher divisions but again may have to wait longer than he wants while they sort out their futures.
"I am taking my time and making sure I get the right players," he said. "There are plenty out there. But they have to come here and show me they have the commitment and desire to play for this football club."
Joining the players already on trial this week are French trio Floran Granir, a 22-year-old right back from Marseilles, Leebibi Moham, a 21-year-old left-sided defender from Strasbourg, and Couthell Thabut, a 22-year-old centre half, along with Jon Stevenson, a former Leicester City and Sunderland striker, and experienced right back Scott McNiven, who played over 250 times for Oldham before spending the last two seasons at Oxford United.
Some or all of these are expected to play some part in Saturday's visit of Championship club Stoke City.
"I will be changing it round and giving everyone an outing on Saturday as I think it is too early to expect players to be playing a full 90 minutes," said Curle.
"Pre-season should be a progression and every single minute each player plays is monitored closely.
"To fans I would say come down and have a look at the nucleus of the team that is growing here.
"If we can build on the performance of last week, we will be in for an entertaining afternoon.
"I know some folk will say it was only against a non-League side. But, when I had my first XI out there, we passed the ball superbly and looked very hard to stop.
"It was a good trip that has helped build team spirit and I must say a big thank you to the chairman for allowing me to take the whole club from youth team to first team plauyers.
"There was additional expense involved but he bought into the fact that it was an opportunity to build on the unity I am trying to create here."
Macclesfield striker Martin Carruthers is still expected to arrive for a trial. But he has a year left on his Moss Rose contract and is still in talks with the Silkmen.
Curle quickly dismissed rumours that striker Colin Larkin is set to move to League Two rivals Kidderminster Harriers.
"Colin is flying in training right now and looking awesome - he's going nowhere," he said.
Defender Adam Eaton, plagued by injuries over the past two seasons, was a notable absentee from the team sheet at St Blazey.
But Curle said: "Adam has a specific personal pre-season programme which we feel is best for him.
"We felt it was too soon to throw him into a game. This season I want him available for 46-plus games and, if we hold him back a little right now, I feel that will be of benefit.
Police are urging Stags Fans to demonstrate their club loyalty on Saturday by supporting the new seating plans that have been implemented to increase public safety.
For the first time in the club's history the home fans will be permanently seated in the South Stand and away fans in the North Stand.
The decision to swap the home and away ends was made in May when the special Safety Advisory Group identified Quarry Lane as a hotspot for disorder when Stags fans exited past opposition supporters as they boarded their coaches.
Match commander supt Dave Wilson said: "This endangered the lives of all those who were in the area at the time and it would have been irresponsible for us to turn a blind eye to the causes of these problems."
To warm up for the visit of Stoke, Curle is taking his squad to Rotherham United today for a behind-closed-doors game, probably of three 30-m inute periods again.
Next Wednesday (21st July) Leeds United are at Field Mill.
Stags are still waiting for a tribunal date to decide how much Sunderland must pay them for Liam Lawrence.


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