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Archived News from August 2002

29th August 2002 17:12

Field Mill feast of football?
CHAD website
Stags boss Stuart Watkiss will cross swords with one of his mentors on Saturday, hoping to show Crewe boss Dario Gradi just how much he learned from his time at Gresty Road.
And with both being advocates of playing passing football, Field Mill should see a cracking game as Stags look to get back on track against the Railwaymen following those two successive Bank Holiday weekend defeats.
"This will be a very difficult game for us but probably one for the football purists," said Watkiss.
"It should be a super spectacle and the way Crewe play may suit us. I doubt there is a more attractive fixture in our league on Saturday. Let's not forget they were two leagues above us last season and, if we are not bang on, we could be left chasing shadows the way they can pass the ball.
"But if we play to our capabilities I know we can outpass any team in this league.
"I had a spell under Dario Gradi at Crewe early in my career so I know how good he is as a coach. I think everyone in football was sad when they went down last season as they have always tried to do things the right way."
Stags need to bounce back quickly after those 2-0 defeats last weekend, though they did at least play very well at Stockport on Monday after the disappointment of the derby loss to Chesterfield.
"I was gutted to lose like that on Saturday," he said. "Maybe we were too aware of how important the game was to the fans. We know we have a lot of making up still to do.
"The fans can play a massive part on Saturday. We need them to be lively, upbeat and loud. It definitely has an effect on the tempo we play at and picks us up a notch."
With Allen Tankard and Bobby Hassell still out injured, Stags will retain the same three-man defence with Mark Lever set to play despite missing training since Monday with bruised ribs.


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