PREVIEWS AND TEAM NEWS
KEEP IT UP YOU STAGS - SHIRTLIFF
Evening Post, 28 October 2005
Peter Shirtliff has told his players if they repeat the midweek Carling Cup performance against Cheltenham tomorrow they will come away with all three points.
Mansfield lost 3-2 to Championship side Millwall after conceding a last-minute goal.
But the performance and fighting spirit to come back from two goals down impressed Shirtliff.
And the Stags caretaker boss said a repeat would make it three league wins for his side and help them move further away from the drop zone.
Shirtliff said: "I told the boys they have to keep that spirit and performance level and take it into the game at Cheltenham.
"If they keep playing like that the fans will come in numbers and enjoy some successful days and evenings.
"But we showed a great spirit to come from 2-0 down and it just shows you that we have made strides and gone in the right direction. We look a good side.
"We have to go to Cheltenham tomorrow with that spirit and take it forward and be competitive. And we will not be far off."
The front pairing of Richie Barker and Simon Brown both scored on Tuesday night and have now got six in the last three games they have started together - seven each for the season.
And Shirtliff is delighted with how it is working out.
He said: "Our front pair look sharp and will cause problems. Their spirit counts for a hell of a lot."
But skipper Barker insists there is still more to come.
He said: "I am still not too pleased with my form in front of goal but hopefully I can now keep it going and build on it and get more goals for the club.
"I am pleased to get back to scoring ways."
CHELTENHAM STRIKERS ARE BACK
Evening Post, 28 October 2005
Cheltenham could have Gary Bradshaw, Steve Guinan and Michael Taylor fit and ready to face Mansfield at Whaddon Road tomorrow.
Bradshaw has not had the chance to shine for the Robins after picking up a groin strain since joining from North Ferriby United last month.
But the 22-year-old striker has declared himself fit and ready to challenge for a first-team spot.
Fellow striker Guinan and centre-half Taylor, who have been sidelined with back and ankle injuries, respectively, are back after coming through training unscathed.
Boss John Ward said: "They will all be regarded as fit and available for the match.
"Gary (Bradshaw) knows exactly what the situation is and we will be very careful with his comeback. He won"t be ready yet for 90 minutes, but I can use him as an impact player."
But 29-year-old defender John Finnigan is out after tearing shoulder ligaments.
Stags ripe for first away win
CHAD website, 27 October 2005
GUS Uhlenbeek believes in-fom Mansfield Town could finally register their first away win of the season at Cheltenham Town this Saturday (3pm).
Although it has been a bogey ground for Stags in the past, Mansfield are currently bang in form while the Robins have lost their last two home gams without scoring a goal.
"There is every chance to could get that first away win on Saturday," said the Stags winger. "We are scoring goals. But we just have to tighten up at the back and concentrate for the full 90 minutes.
"Our recent displays have been great for everyone. We are proving we can play good football.
"And it is a massive boost to get off the bottom. The luck has not gone for us so far. Most part of the season we have been playing well but not getting the results or sticking the ball away when we should have done.
"But we have stuck together, kept going, and worked very hard in training and it is now starting to show.
"I think playing 4-4-2 has helped. Under Carlton Palmer I think some of the players were quite shocked how he wanted to play.
"I didn't mind as I had played that formation at Wycombe the season before and it worked well for us there. But now everyone seems to know what they are doing in a 4-4-2."
Caretaker boss Peter Shirtliff is waiting on the fitness of central defensive partners Jon Olav Hjelde and Alex John-Baptiste, both missing training today.
Hjelde battled on against Millwall on Tuesday after taking a bang to the head while John-Baptiste, who has suffered glandular fever in the past, is suffering swollen glands again.
Both are to see a doctor today but Shirtliff is quietly confident both will make it for Saturday.
"We have got to start putting some away points on the board," he said.
"We must certainly make sure we don't get beaten on Saturday.
"I thought our display against Millwall was probably our best of the season. But football can be cruel.
"We need to take our last two displays into the Cheltenham game and keep that same spirit and competitiveness.
"The lads are enjoying their football right now and it shows in their performances. If we carry on like that then we will start to pick up the results."
The Robins will be without skipper and central midfielder John Finnigan, who has a dislocated shoulder, and striker Steve Guinan, who has a back injury.
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