CORNWALL RETURNS TO FULHAM
... while Sunderland refused to allow Michael Reddy out
Win can be a Springboard
STAGS manager Stuart Watkiss is urging his side to use last weekend's hammering of Tranmere Rovers as a springboard for this Saturday's crucial game at Peterborough United (noon kick-off).
“This is a massive game for us at Peterborough,” said Watkiss.
“It feels good to be off the bottom but, if you look at the table, we are only two wins off 10th place.
“Peterborough are 18th, but if we beat them on Saturday we will go above them - it's that tight.
“I was delighted to beat Tranmere 6-1 but one swallow doesn't make a summer and I have told my players it was only one game.
“What we need now is to use that as a springboard for a sequence of good results to get us up this league.”
He added: “To be honest we didn't play any better on Saturday than we did in the second half at Northampton the week before. The only difference was that we took our chances.
“It was a brilliant feeling at the end of the game but we won't start shouting from the rooftops just yet.
“It may sound silly but the other reason why we did so much better on Saturday was that we were better when we didn't have the ball.
“The two central defenders made a big difference to us as well as they snuffed out the threat of Simon Haworth and it's no coincidence he was sent off in sheer frustration.
“The midfield were outstanding and the forwards were a handful. But what perhaps pleased me more than anything was to see Jamie Clarke have his best game for us so far and Danny Holyoak having another little taste near the end.
“Jamie is now starting to look as if he believes he belongs in the first team and it's great to see some more youngsters coming through the ranks.
“Danny has a bright future as well. He has that nastiness which defenders need and it's something you can't give to someone. He would kick his granny if it meant he get the ball!”
“And let's also give the keeper credit.
Arjan van Heusden made a big save just before half-time when they were leading 1-0 which was crucial.
“You could see our confidence visibly take off when we equalised. Now we have to keep our feet on the ground for the Peterborough game as there is still a lot of work to do.
“Also we had a bit of luck here and there. Iyseden scored one off his backside! We could have done with that happening in games like Stockport and Northampton.”
Scott Sellars picked up a slight groin strain which saw him come off midway through the second half on Saturday but he should be fit for the game at London Road.
Damien Delaney has signed for a second month on loan from Leicester City, although trialist Luke Cornwall has returned to Fulham, despite scoring in the reserves' 3-1 win at Boston (Wayne Corden and Mark Carter scored the others).
“Luke did well but wouldn't have been in the starting XI and therefore you have to decide if you want to use up a loan for, with respect to Luke, someone who will just be a bit player,” said Watkiss.
With Stuart Reddington out on a loan at Burton - he scored on his debut last weekend - Watkiss is hoping to get another player out on loan before the weekend to free up some money to bring in another loan signing.
Two striker targets were dashed last week when Sunderland refused to allow Michael Reddy out and the new transfer window regulations prevented Watkiss swooping for Craig Russell at St Johnstone.
Advance tickets are now on sale at Field Mill for the trip to Swindon Town on Saturday, 26th October, priced £19 adults, £12 students/OAPs and £6 U16s.
They remain on sale until 10am on Thursday, 24th October. Turnstile prices will be £21 adults, £13 students/OAPs and £7 U16s.
Mansfield Town travel to Wrexham tonight (Wednesday, 7pm) in the Avon Insurnace League Cup.
Allen Tankard, Peter Clark and Michael Bingham should get a run-out after injury while Bobby Hassell and Shayne Bradley may join them in training next week.
THE enigmatic Iyseden Christie scored twice and turned in a superb 90 minutes on Saturday - but won't be taking any more penalties!
Christie, desperate for his hat-trick, grabbed the ball after being brought down by Christian Edwards near the end, but failed to get a poorly-taken penalty on target. However, he was quickly forgiven!
“I wasn't happy with Iyseden taking it and shouted from the line to tell him not to,” said manager Stuart Watkiss.
“With our goal difference we need every goal we can score right now and Iyseden's was a poor attempt. From now on, whatever the situation, Neil MacKenzie - if he is playing - will take the penalties for us.”
Christie certainly seems to have matured as a player since his return to the club in the summer and Watkiss added: “We knew bringing Iyseden back would be a gamble as he can be so frustrating.
“But his Player of the Month award before Saturday's game was well deserved.
“Whether he is having a good game or a bad game, he is a handful for defenders and a nightmare to play against.
“I have played against him in training and he is the strongest centre forward I have ever played against.
“Ask the Luton or Northampton defenders or Christian Edwards from last Saturday if they'd like to be up against him every week.
“You can't read him as even Iyseden doesn't know what he's going to do so what chance does a defender stand?”
Watkiss added: “I had just noticed his name on the list of players available when his agent rang so I think it may have been fate.
“He has certainly come back older and wiser. He had a serious injury and then found himself released. Suddenly you don't take for granted that you can make a living out the game.
“Also being without a club in the summer maybe opened up his eyes a bit. He will be in a strong position if he continues to do well in Division Two as his contract is up next summer and he could have a host of clubs fighting over him.
“On his day he can destroy teams.”
Posted by Martin Shaw
Latest | October 2002