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Archived News from October 2002

WATKISS ON SKY ON SATURDAY
11th October 2002 21:13


"Watkiss will receive a specially engraved crystal football to be screened on Sky Sports' Soccer Saturday prior to Mansfield's meeting with Barry Fry's Peterborough."

(comment from Martin: "prior to": How can this be, given that Soccer Saturday starts at 12.00 on Sky Sports News, the same as Stags kick off??).
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Stags land first trophy of season!
CHAD website

Mansfield Town landed their first trophy of the season today (Friday) when their 6-1 hammering of Tranmere Rovers last week was named the League Managers Association Performance of the Week today.

Stuart will receive a specially engraved crystal football to commemorate his team's award-winning achievement in a presentation that will be screened on Sky Sports' Soccer Saturday programme, prior to Mansfield's meeting with Barry Fry's Peterborough. No doubt the LMA Performance of the Week panelist will be hoping his opponents don't carry their new-found home form with them on their trip to London Road tomorrow.


You wait seven hours for a goal, and then six come along at once. At least that was the case for Mansfield Town fans at Field Mill on Saturday as they watched their team stage that amazing second-half comeback to claim their first home win since the opening day of the season.

Having lost their last four home league games without scoring a single goal, Mansfield must have thought they were in for another unproductive day when Tranmere took the lead 13 minutes into their Second Division clash at the weekend.

However, Stags boss Stuart Watkiss must have hit home with his half-time team-talk as his side emerged to hammer six past the visitors and claim a much-needed victory. Having twice been on the wrong end of Performance of the Week winning displays against Crewe and Oldham Mansfield's efforts have also earned them the prestigious award, sponsored by Scottish Life, as chosen by an esteemed LMA panel.

Sir Alex Ferguson, George Burley, Barry Fry, Dave Bassett and Howard Wilkinson the new Sunderland manager and LMA chairman considered Portsmouth's exciting 3-2 win over Rotherham at Millmoor as well as Sheffield United's excellent comeback at Molineux - where they beat Wolves 3-1 after also going a goal down - but it was Mansfield's staggering second-half display that impressed them most.

Having emerged for the second 45 minutes a goal behind, Mansfield equalised within 60 seconds through Neil MacKenzie. Six minutes later they were ahead, thanks to the former Leeds, Newcastle and Blackburn midfield veteran Scott Sellars, and just after the hour Liam Lawrence doubled the home side's advantage.


Reduced to ten men in the 66th minute, Tranmere saw their hopes of mounting a comeback of their own severely dashed, and, just to dispel any lingering thoughts of such an unlikely eventuality, Iyseden Christie struck twice, either side of Colin Larkin's 75th minute goal, to round off Mansfield's marvellous day.

Speaking exclusively to leaguemanagers.com the day after the match, Stuart Watkiss was obviously delighted to have picked up a vital victory at Field Mill, and in some style. He said: "You go a goal down quite early on - it's another set-piece that we've conceded - but even at half time we were quite optimistic; we had the wind second half and as I say touchwood - things dropped in place.
"We have played that well before this season, but we've not taken our chances. On Saturday, luckily, we managed to convert a large percentage of the chances we created and obviously the score-line is very pleasing."
Having enjoyed the high of promotion with The Stags earlier this year, Watkiss is now enduring contrasting emotions as he looks to move Mansfield out of the relegation zone in Division Two. He admitted: "Well it is a test and obviously some days you just feel like the whole world's against you. But you just have to hang in there, you still have to stick to your principles, carry on doing what you believe in, what you think is right.
"Everything went well Saturday but, saying that, we know that's only one result and we've got to consistently turn performances like that in and be a lot more difficult to play against."
He added: "What's amazing is once we equalized, a minute after half time, the difference in them was incredible. It could have been seven, eight, nine - I mean we missed a penalty as well - it could have been anything. It is 90% confidence with them.
"As I said earlier it is only one result - it's a good result - hopefully it's a platform now that we can build on, but no-one's getting carried away here just at one result and now we need to put a string of results together. You have to know that when you're not going to win a game you can have enough about you that you're going to go away with a point."
Stuart will receive a specially engraved crystal football to commemorate his team's award-winning achievement in a presentation that will be screened on Sky Sports' Soccer Saturday programme, prior to Mansfield's meeting with Barry Fry's Peterborough. No doubt the LMA Performance of the Week panelist will be hoping his opponents don't carry their new-found home form with them on their trip to London Road tomorrow.

Stags' target and former Sunderland striker Craig Russell has been told he
can move to an English club after finding himself out in the cold at St
Johnstone.
The new transfer window preventing players moving between different
countries prevented Mansfield following up their interest in him a week ago.
Russell has subsequently appealed to the Scottish FA and been told he can go
- though it would appear the news has come too late for Mansfield to
resurrect their interest.
"Craig has now been told he can move to an English team but we have just
taken Damien Delany for a second month's loan which means finances are not
available right now," said Mansfield boss Stuart Watkiss.
"It is a great shame as it is not often you can get the services of a
million pound footballer.
"We will continue to monitor the sutiation but I would think as soon as
clubs know he is available there will be plenty of interested parties. But
that's life at this level.
"We have Damien for a second month as well as Peter Clark on lon and we have
also committed ourselves to a short term contract with the keeper, Arjan van
Heusden."
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Posted by Martin Shaw

 

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