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Archived News from January 2007

12th January 2007 19:54


Barker, 'Big Boots to fill'
This week was 'make your mind up' time for former Darlington front man Barry Conlon when he was presented with the opportunity to join Billy Dearden's Mansfield Town side.

"It was make up my mind up time this week and I think that I have made the right decision coming to Mansfield. I had the choice of going out on loan or joining Mansfield but after some thought I decided on the latter and it is so far feeling like the right move.

"I have played a lot of football at a number of clubs and feel that I have a lot to offer a club like Mansfield Town. In this game you shift around a lot from club to club and especially so at this time of year. So it made it a bit easier with Martin (Gritton) arriving on the same day. When there are two of you in the same boat you find it easier to gel, I suppose it is the same in any walk of life. But the lads here are a great bunch and welcomed us both from the start.

"Sometimes it becomes obvious that things are not going your way and it is then you should think about moving on. This time came for me this week and I decided to leave the northeast.

"I haven't played too many games lately but I will be giving a hundred percent and I hope that the supporters will get behind me. I just want to get the first few games under my belt to get my match fitness back. People think that just because I am a big guy that my game only consists of picking the ball up in the air, but I like the ball played to my feet because I love to play football. And I believe that I have a lot to offer Mansfield.

"My initial contract is until the end of the season so I want to get my head down and do the best I can then we can start to think about what will happen in the future.

"People are seeing me as a replacement for Richie Barker who is a good player so these will be big boots to fill but I can only give it a hundred percent and hopefully the fans will see me as a suitable replacement. I have spoken to the gaffer who has said that I am in contention for the weekend (Hereford United at Edgar Street - Saturday 13 Jan 2007). And I cannot wait to get started. We have a long way to go and from what I have seen in training this morning I believe that we can salvage something form this season."

Barry will be wearing the number 9 shirt when he takes to the pitch on Saturday at Hereford!

New Signing Martin Gritton eager to start for Stags
New signing Martin Gritton took time to speak to the official website about the signing of his contract at Field Mill

"It was all about getting first team football really I was struggling for a place at Lincoln because places were few and far between so when the opportunity came for me to come here I jumped at it. Billy (Dearden) was good enough to offer me a chance to join the club with a view to play games and I am just looking forward to getting started.

"I am twenty eight now so I really need to be playing football and with my contract at Lincoln being up at the end of the season I want to come here and impress. I feel that I have a lot to offer especially in division 2 where I have had some success already.

"It all came about quite quickly really with most of the deal being sorted out yesterday (Thursday 11 Jan). I had played in a reserve game for Lincoln on the Wednesday evening and Billy contacted me and asked if I would like to join Mansfield and here I am."

Having being around the game for a while Gritton has had to travel for his art, playing many of his games in the South West of England where he played at Torquay and Plymouth at the beginning of his career before moving back up North. Playing at Grimsby before joining Lincoln in January 2006 he recognises that the life of a footballer is a bit nomadic but a life style that he relishes.

"I have had to travel a bit throughout my career but I relish the challenges of joining a new club so the moving around is a small price to pay.

"I have played against Mansfield a few times in the past and found them to be well supported and talented teams. In fact when I was I Torquay I can remember some great games against them with Mansfield being one of the better footballing sides in our division. It is something that I am looking forward to becoming involved with.

"The league is very tight again this season especially towards the bottom and despite what people say we are where we are for a reason, we need to deal with it and start climbing the table. If we work hard we will start to make our own luck and hopefully we can start to climb up the table and see where we go from there. I naturally will be wanting do my part in this and I hope that I am selected to play at the weekend against Hereford."

The big forward is known for his strengths up front, but he is also adept at playing a role in the wide midfield areas.

"I prefer to play up front but I have played on the left wing and enjoyed it. At six foot two you try not to drift out to the wings too much and I prefer to be in the thick of it.

"I joined training this morning and really got on with the lads, they are a great bunch and my first impression is that they are a bunch of young lads with a lot of ability so it will be great to play with them. Hereford will hopefully be my first game and it will not be easy but we have do our best and come away with three points"

Look out for Martin at the weekend he will bearing the number 20 shirt.


Latest | January 2007