VIDEO: 'I want men not mice' - Russ
mansfieldtown.net, Mon 11 Apr 2011
Manager Duncan Russell has warned his players against any repeat showings of Saturday's 4-0 defeat against BSBP strugglers Hayes & Yeading.
The loss at Church Road was our 16th defeat of the season and third in the last five games causing Russell to announce plans to shake up the squad in the summer should his contract be extended beyond the end of the season.
Despite an improved second half performance, 'Russ' blamed defensive weaknesses in the first half on a lack of concentration whilst also urging his squad to improve during our last seven games of the season, starting against Barrow here at Field Mill tomorrow night, if they are to feature next season.
Duncan Russell is speaking to Dave Rhodes (Mansfield 103.2), Matt Halfpenny (Nottingham Post) and John Lomas (Chad) at this morning's press cofnerence.
He said: "The last time we played like that was against Grimsby (on New Year's Day) to be honest. I spoke to the players about it and they have to take responsibility.
"If the players don't do what they're told then I'll need to change things and if I need to change players then I'll change players.
"I felt we could have got something from the game - at least a point. I know they're down there in the dogfight so they do start to perform like the teams at the top but it's no excuse not to go there and match them man for man.
"I said to them in the dressing room at half time that I didn't want mice and wanted men so they went out and, to be fair, they did actually defend a lot better in the second half. It was too late though as they had to do that in the first half.
"Far too often we concede early goals and that's down to a lack of concentration. It's unacceptable and if I've still got a contract then I'll change people.
"I'll have to take the brunt of things and I'm willing to take that because I want to be a football manager."
When pressed on the cause our current form in the league,'Russ' felt that some players may be guilty of being distracted by our FA Trophy Final date at Wembley next month.
He added: "I hate to say it but the old 'Wembleyitis' as I call it is in some people's minds and I've told them to get it out their minds. What they've got to do is go on a run of games now to make sure that when they do get to Wembley that they're in the right frame of mind.
"They've got to start changing it and they've got to start changing it tomorrow.
"If I'm still in a job next season then I've earmarked players that I want to bring in of a higher calibre and better then what I've got here at the moment.
"There's quite a few players who want to come here with good track records and experience so I want to build my own side, if I'm given the opportunity, that I think is more than capable of winning this league.
"On any given day this team can beat anyone but unfortunately what they haven't been able to do is have a level of consistency. That's been the real problem as you have to be consistent in this league if you want to win promotion."
Stags looking to restore lost pride
Evening Post, 12 Apr 2011
STEVE Foster is looking for Mansfield Town to this week regain ground lost in failing to beat relegation-threatened Southport and Hayes and Yeading.
The Stags threw away a two-goal lead to draw 2-2 with the Sandgrounders last Tuesday before being thrashed 4-0 in West London at the weekend.
Central defender Foster admits those results were unacceptable and insists the players are determined to make amends in hosting Barrow, Bath City, Luton and Grimsby consecutively in a fixture-laden eight days.
"I think Saturday was the most disappointing performance of the season, especially coming after the Southport second half," he said.
"We went there looking to win and we were 3-0 down after 20-odd minutes. They started off at a pace we couldn't live with.
"There were crosses coming into our box that we didn't deal with and we never put challenges in.
"We let ourselves and the club down with the performance.
"We shouldn't be going to places like that and being beaten 4-0.
"When we went into the Rushden game, we had a run of fixtures where we felt we had got a great chance of getting a good amount of points
"We haven't done that yet but we still have the four home games and hopefully we can do it in those."
Foster believes it is important for Mansfield to put together a good run of form before their FA Trophy final with Darlington on May 7 and said: "It's important to go into the big games with momentum and confidence riding high."
Manager Duncan Russell believes his players have a duty to put on a decent performance after Saturday's dismal showing.
"On any given day, this team can beat anybody in the league, but unfortunately we have not had that level of consistency you need," he said.
"If these players want a positive result against Barrow, they will get it. It's all about attitude.
"There will definitely be a few changes."
Spotlight on Mansfield Town v Barrow
Evening Post, 12 Apr 2011
Mansfield (from): Grof, Collett, Silk, Spence, Istead, Naylor, Foster, Preece, Sandwith, Stonehouse, Briscoe, Thompson, Nix, Murray, A. Smith, Higginson, Medley, Mitchley.
Barrow (from): Masters, Spender, M. Pearson, Bolland, Edwards, Rutherford, Owen, Sheridan, P. Smith, Foorest, Curtis, S. Pearson, Nicholas, Baker, Cook, Goodfellow, Hulbert.
Team news: Mansfield boss Duncan Russell is likely to shuffle his pack after Saturday's 4-0 thumping at Hayes and Yeading, particularly to rest legs as Mansfield have four home games in the next seven days.
Alan Marriott (broken finger) and Rhys Day (knee) are definitely out while Ashley Cain (thigh) remains a doubt.
Paul Connor starts a three-game ban after his straight red card at the weekend.
Barrow are without Simon Wiles and Nick Chadwick (both knee).
But Richie Baker is back from a three-games suspension and Robin Hulbert has just returned from a hamstring problem. Both may have to settle for a place on the bench.
One to watch: Paul Rutherford. The midfielder scored a hat-trick in Barrow's 5-0 victory over Kettering in midweek to take his tally for the season to seven, which also included a goal against Mansfield when the sides played out a 2-2 draw at Holker Street in February.
Managers: Darren Sheridan and Dave Bayliss. The joint duo are currently winning their battle to keep the north-west club in the Blue Square Bet Premier, and a positive result at Field Mill tonight would see them edge closer to safety
Flying winger Cain back to boost Mansfield Town for Barrow clash
CHAD.co.uk, Monday 11 April 2011
FLYING winger Ashley Cain looks set for a recall after injury as Stags boss Duncan Russell rings the changes for tomorrow's visit of Barrow after Saturday's 4-0 humiliation at Hayes and Yeading.
“We have really missed Adam and it will be a massive boost for the rest of the team to see him back,” said Russell, who has said he will shuffle his squad as they face four home games in eight days, including three in five from tomorrow.
“Adam has been biting at the bit to get back and worked so hard. He has been a model pro and just wanted treatment all the time. He has a great attitude and with an attitude like that he has a great chance in this game. I wish a few others would take it on board.
Russell was furious with his Wembley-bound side's first half display at Hayes when they went 3-0 behind and down to 10 men inside 30 horrific minutes.
He said: “The last time we played like that was at Grimsby. Hayes put three balls into the box, we didn't defend them and they scored three goals.
“They were so simple to defend. You have to take responsibility if a player goes across you then you must block him and we didn't do that. It is down to a lack of concentration.
“It's the story of our season. The first half performance was not good enough.
“I have to take the brunt for things which I am willing to day as I want to be a football manager. So I do feel a bit let down.
“There is an opportunity to command and demand a shirt for the FA Trophy final. But I think some might have the old 'Wembleyitis' in their minds and I won't stand for it.
“I hate players who hide and one or two are starting to do that. I won't accept anything less then 10 per cent.
“On any given day this team can beat any team. What they can't do is find any level of consistency. You have to be consistent in this league if you want promotion.
“The result tomorrow means as much as Wembley. If I see any players hiding I will expose them and will get rid of them.”
He added: “I would like to apologise to our loyal away supporters. The players have to appreciate what these fans do for us in difficult financial times and owe it to them to get a result tomorrow.
“We have four home games in eight days and we are capable of losing every one of them and also of winning every one of them.
“We are like a deck of cards and I am never sure what I am going to turn over. I can see what we are capable of as can the fans so it's down to players to maintain their level of performance.
“It will be a tough game. Barrow had a great result at the weekend and are in a dogfight.”
The Cumbrians' 5-0 thrashing of Kettering on Saturday has eased their relegation fears but another win tomorrow would help them breath easier.
It took two late goals from sub Adam Smith to rescue Stags a 2-2 draw at Barrow earlier this year
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