HOLDSWORTH, MARRIOTT, MARK COOPER REACTION
Exodus showing value to Poppies
01 September 2009
By Jon Dunham
Mark Cooper believes some Coca-Cola Championship or League One managers would be well within their rights to take a chance on giant defender Exodus Geohaghon.
The Kettering Town boss is expecting a quiet day with the transfer window set to close at 5pm this evening.
But Geohaghon seems the be the player that most are talking about
if any of the Poppies squad are to leave.
His stock must have goneADVERTISEMENTup a bit more after another impressive display at the heart of the Kettering defence as they claimed a second successive 0-0 draw at Mansfield Town yesterday.
And Cooper believes it is summer signing and skipper Ian Roper who has helped bring the best out of Geohaghon.
"I think it will be pretty quiet from our point of view," Cooper said.
"We haven't had one phone call about Ex but if I was a Championship or League One manager I would take a punt on him.
"I think Ropes has calmed him down and talks to him in the right way.
"Ian is an experienced player and those two seem to complement each other very well."
Cooper, meanwhile, was critical of his team's attacking display at Field Mill.
Defensively, there were no problems. But the Poppies could have nicked it late on as Gareth Seddon missed a wonderful opportunity in front of goal eight minutes from the end.
Cooper added: "I didn't enjoy the game, it was very bitty.
"We had a couple of great chances towards the end to hit them on the break but we gave the ball away.
"So we have to be better and I have let the players know that.
"I felt we could have nicked it at the end. We weathered the storm and you expect Gareth to score that.
"I was disappointed with us going forward to be honest. The midfield boys weren't at it and as good as they were on Saturday, they didn't really keep the ball well enough this time. We need to be better in the final third as well."
David Holdsworth video interview--->
Alan Marriott video interview--->
David Holdsworth and Mark Cooper audio interviews from BBC local radio --->
Holdsworth signing 'missing architect' tonight
CHAD.co.uk, By John Lomas
DAVID Holdsworth believes he has landed his 'missing architect' on the eve of the transfer deadline.
The Stags boss tonight expects to complete the signing of a player he feels may have been able to unlock the tough Kettering defence in Bank Holiday Monday's 0-0 home draw.
A victory would have sent the Stags top of the Blue Square Premier but today, after 11 goals in three home wins this season, they drew a blank before a big Bank Holiday crowd.
"Obviously it is frustrating but there were a lot of plus points today and Kettering are no mugs," he said.
"Sometimes you need an architect to open a door and we didn't have that today. We didn't have that imagination around the box and we didn't get that little break.
"But I love architects and I may have landed myself one.
"He shook hands with me after the game and will have a medical tonight and hopefully it will go through.
"This boy is a good player who has played at a high level and his signing should excite the fans. He will give me an option.
"I am very pleased with my squad but this is a player the chairman and I have been working on for quite a time and sometimes you have to be patient.
"I believe we have got him at the right time. He may have been able to unlock that door for us today."
He added: "Kettering asked questions of us today though I felt we were the only side who ever looked like winning it.
"I think two games in three days left us a little flat today, we were a bit dry and there wasn't much atmosphere on the pitch. We didn't have the cutting edge in front of goal but I won't grumble as Kettering are a good side.
"They set up shop today and smashed it long and I thought we defended well, particularly the two centre halves.
"With 20 minutes left I told Daryl Clare he might go on and get that little mistake but Kettering didn't make one."
Stags did have the ball in the Kettering net but the referee's assistant felt it came off Rob Duffy's hand and disallowed it.
"I don't know how he could see between him and Roper that it had come off a hand," he said. "I thought it was a legitimate goal, but he didn't give it so I have to bite my lip."
Luke Jones finished a hard-fought game with three stitches in a cheek wound while Craig Armstrong limped off with a spasm in his hamstring and will be assessed tomorrow.
The 0-0 represented a fifth clean sheet in seven outings for keeper Alan Marriott.
However, Marriott said: "I get all the credit but you have to look at the defence in front of me.
"Look at Luke Jones today. He has had stitches in his face and is going home to his missus with a nice scar.
"We are all in it together and take pride in both scoring goals and getting clean sheets. We win as a team and we lose as a team.
"Both teams had chances today, But the wind didn't help as both teams went direct.
"Kettering are a tough team and for the last three or four seasons have had the best defence. Getting a 0-0 kept out unbeaten home run going.
"Their long throws are not easy for a midget like me as you have got to get past a crowd of people. But we dug in and defended well.
"Before the weekend we would have taken four out of six points.
"We have to try to get four out of six points from the games against the top sides as we have shown we can beat the lesser teams quite comfortably, especially at home, but mustn't take out foot off the gas."
Marriott delighted to keep it clean with Stags
Tuesday, September 01, 2009, 07:00Comment on this story
MANSFIELD Town keeper Alan Marriott collected his fifth clean sheet in seven games – then gave his defence all the credit.
The Stags number one was well protected by his back four in the 0-0 draw with Kettering that saw Mansfield's unbeaten run stretch to five games.
"Everyone is starting to build an understanding (at the back) and you need that," said Marriott.
"We are starting to know each others' strengths and weaknesses, what they are going to do.
"It is about helping people out when we need to and covering for their mistakes.
"It's easy for a keeper to take credit for clean sheets, but we have got people like Luke Jones getting stitches in his face for the cause and now he has to go home and answer to his Mrs!
"Everyone is in it together and we all take personal pride. We're working very hard on the training ground to get things right.
"I think we have got a good balance now between the defence and the strikers at the moment."
The Stags are still second in the table, one point behind Oxford.
Marriott said: "To be fair, they had a few chances and so did we. It was quite direct at times with the ball in the air quite a bit and the wind didn't help.
"They play an awkward style with a long throw and that was horrible from a keeper's point of view because it's not always easy to come past all the bodies."
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