TEAM NEWS FOR DERBY GAME
Dearden urges Stags not to give ball away to star-studded Rams
CHAD website, 26 July 2007
By John Lomas
MANSFIELD Town boss Billy Dearden urged his players not to give the ball away cheaply when they take on Premiership new boys Derby County at Field Mill tomorrow (3pm).
This will be only the Stags' second pre-season fixture and represents a huge test against high quality opposition.
So Dearden urged them not to make life even more difficult for themselves.
"We are looking forward to it, it will be a good test," he said.
"It will be difficult enough without us giving the ball away.
"We need to keep it as much as we can against better players. There is nothing worse than giving the ball away and not being able to get it back against good players.
"We are still trying to get ourselves fit and I am hoping for a good performance. It will be a chance for most of our fans to see the new players for the first time and, hopefully, the pitch should be good.
"We will certainly have to be on our mettle. This will be our first real full game and I will try to play some of the players for as long as I can.
"We would have prefered to have already played Leicester last week but it wasn't to be.
"So we need to make the most of this one and then I will take a decent team to Alfreton on Monday."
Dearden expects Jake Buxton and Danny Sleath to be available after resting them from full training with tight hamstrings.
Former Ram eager to shoot down Derby big guns
CHAD website, 26 July 2007
By John Lomas
AFTER 10 years at Derby County no one is looking forward to taking on the Rams tomorrow (3pm) more than Mansfield Town's new signing Dan Martin.
The young midfielder has shaken off a dead leg picked up on Monday night and is looking forward to facing his home town team.
"I had 10 years at Derby and know most of the lads there," he said.
"I have all my family coming to the game, I've got about 30 coming to watch so to get one over on Derby would be nice, especially when I have a drink with some of their players on Saturday night and I can take the mickey out of them.
"Derby taught me everything really - all the basics, how to pass the ball.
"I trained with the first team regularly and know players like Giles Barnes, Michael Johnson, Lee Camp and Richard Jackson. It wil be nice to see them on Saturday."
However, despite being Derby-born and at the club for so long, Martin is actually a supporters of the Rams' bitter rivals Leicester City.
"I know it's a weird one but that's down to my dad who supported Leicester and used to take me down there to watch them," he said.
Martin was highly though of at Derby and given a three year professional contract. But within a year Notts County came calling.
"I was 18 and, at that age, I wanted first team football which Notts were offering me," he said.
"I had a word with George Burley to see if he would allow me to leave and he told me I could go. I made over 50 appearances with Notts and hopefully I can play that and more here.
"I have fitted in really well and Danny Reet and Stephen Dawson are good friends."
Martin is pleased with pre-season so far and added: "Fitness-wise I am almost there now.
"Obviously I was particularly disappointed about the Leicester game being off last week, as was my dad.
"I don't think I really got into the game properly at Belper on Monday. I really wanted to play a full game but couldn't do that as I got injured.
"I played central midfield first half and was then going to play left back second half but had to come off.
"But we played a full game between us on Wednesday which was useful.
"Against Derby we don't want to go out there and be annihilated. We hope we can play our best and come away with something.
"Hopefuly we can show our fans what we've been working on and hopefully I will be selected. It would be nice for me to get a goal against them too."
Evening Post, 27 July 2007
Skipper Jake Buxton and Danny Sleath (both hamstring) have slight problems but are expected to be fit for selection against Derby County tomorrow.
Dan Martin and Alex-John-Baptiste are back in training after picking up knocks in the 1-1 draw at Belper on Monday night.
But Simon Brown will not be involved.
Mansfield's game at Peterborough on Saturday, September 8, has been put back to September 9 (2pm) to avoid a clash with England's home European Championship qualifier with Israel.
Latest | July 2007