COX, DYER, MARRIOTT, HOLDSWORTH REACTION
video interviews with Paul Cox and Ross Dyer --->
audio interview with with Paul Cox --->
Mansfield Town manager Paul Cox tells BBC Radio Nottingham his side's 2-1 win against Lincoln City was a fitting tribute to chairman John Radford, who finally bought their Field Mill home this week.
audio interview with David Holdsworth from BBC Radio Lincolnshire
Lincoln City manager David Holdsworth told BBC Lincolnshire:
"It was a very even game. There was nothing in it and you would not have guessed that Mansfield are on the verge of the play-offs and we have had a struggling team, so all in all I was satisfied.
"But I felt that (we needed) a bit more belief about us, a bit more desire in the final third.
"We've competed very well today. If we do have something to improve on, we need to start keeping clean sheets but we've played a good side and there wasn't much difference.
"But when you come to a side in the top six you have to impose yourself and I think there were not enough personal battles won. But I can't take anything away from Mansfield, they're a top six side and we must have aspirations of getting to those levels."
David Holdsworth told BBC Lincolnshire:
"I thought we had an unbelievable shout for a penalty. I'm not trying to take the gloss off Mansfield, but that was one of the most blatant handballs we've seen. I cant work out how he doesn't give it and it was going goalbound.
I'm looking forward to seeing the DVD of their first goal, because he's got between my two centre halves and they should be dealing with it better.
I'll look at the second one, but Joe (Anyon)'s a very good keeper and he must have been unsighted because it travelled quite distance."
transcribed by Martin Shaw
David Holdsworth ready to wield axe over Lincoln City defence
Lincolnshire Echo, Thursday, March 08, 2012
David Holdsworth is scouring the market to beef up his Lincoln City defence after sounding the alarm over their inability to keep clean sheets.
The concerned Imps boss is feverishly looking for reinforcements having reached breaking point at the soft goals undermining the club's progress.
The Echo understands the City chief, along with the rest of the squad, watched a DVD of last Saturday's 2-1 defeat against Mansfield on Monday to analyse the team's performance.
Holdsworth was unhappy at the nature of the first goal in which Ross Dyer was allowed to run unmarked past Josh Gowling and Robbie Williams into the six-yard box to put the Stags ahead.
Since Richard Hinds left the club for Yeovil, City's defence has struggled for the organisation which the former Sheffield Wednesday ace added during his spell.
Holdsworth is now hoping funds will be released by City's hierarchy as he seeks much-needed steel in his bid to drive the Imps towards mid-table safety.
"During the transfer window I said that if I could do any business it would probably be at centre-back," he said.
"A lot depends on the money available and who is out there, but it is certainly an area that I am looking at.
"You can hold your hands up if you are beaten by skill or a wonder goal, but some of the goals we have conceded of late have been very disappointing.
"We are in a scrap and the players have to defend for their lives, their club and their own pride."
Any move for a defender would have to be in the loan market before the window closes at the end of March, unless Holdsworth can sign a free agent.
Guy Branston is a player the former Sheffield United captain admires having attempted to sign him during the January window.
Injury curtailed that move, although the former Leicester defender is fit again.
And the Echo understands the Bantams are keen to loan him out after he fell out of favour with boss Phil Parkinson
Mansfield Town boss Paul Cox believes Stags can cope with increasing expectation levels
Stags boss Paul Cox believes his side are more than capable of coping with the growing expectation levels around the club.
A biggest home crowd of the season of nearly 5,000 saw Mansfield defeat David Holdsworth's Lincoln City with second-half strikes from Ross Dyer and Gary Roberts.
It was the first time Mansfield, who have now won five home games on the trot, had beaten Lincoln at Field Mill since winning 2-1 on September 2001.
The victory, the sixth in Mansfield's last eight outings, was the perfect way to finish one of the most memorable weeks in the club's recent history following John Radford's purchase of Field Mill.
Speaking after the game Cox said: “The expectations around the club are rising, but that is something we are all aware of.
“We enjoy the thrill of the chase and we are in a good position at the moment.
“We have gone into the game enjoying our football today and that has shown. We had a good control of the match throughout.
“The lads have done really well today. Martin Riley, Anthony Howell and Ross Dyer were all excellent for very different reasons and gave us an excellent spine to the team.
“Ross Dyer is only a young player, but he has lots of potential and that shone through today.
“It is a team game and today that was a good team performance.”
“The ground deal on Friday has put a smile on everyone's faces and it showed.”
Stags are now just one point off Southport in the last play-off place with a game in hand and could go into the top five for the first time since 27th September if they can beat Cambridge United on Tuesday night
Cox delighted with desire of his players to earn win
PAUL Cox was delighted Mansfield Town marked the return of Field Mill to the club with a victory over Lincoln.
The Stags were under huge pressure to bring about a happy end to a day of celebration following confirmation chairman John Radford had successfully completed his purchase of the ground from Keith Haslam.
But they duly delivered with a hard-fought 2-1 victory that was a fifth successive home victory.
"The lads played with a lot of desire," said manager Cox. "When there's been the build up all week that there has been to a game, it can make it very difficult.
"But I'm really chuffed the lads have given the chairman that win because it's hard being up there and having to please everyone, as he does.
"John deserves all the accolades he gets and I think I would have picked him for man of the match as the sponsors did for what he's done.
"But for a playing point of view I thought we were good in possession and when we didn't have it we went and closed them down very well."
Cox was delighted with the contribution of Martin Riley and Anthony Howell, who both came into the side, and Ross Dyer, who often comes in for criticism from the terraces.
He said: "Martin Riley was excellent at centre back, where he was up against two big units. Anthony was very effective in the midfield and really got stuck in.
"The other players really appreciate what Ross gives to the side and he is really starting to understand now what he gives to the side and what he's good at."
Lincoln's former Mansfield boss David Holdsworth was naturally disappointed with the defeat.
He said: "I felt there was very little in the game. I'm not trying to take any of the gloss off it for Mansfield, but we had an unbelievable shout for a penalty. I can't work out how he hasn't given it.
"You wouldn't have known that Mansfield are on the edge of the play-offs while we have had a struggling team. I just think we needed to have a bit more belief in the final third.
"The first goal was always going to be key."
Stand-in skipper Marriott dedicates victory to Alexander
ALAN Marriott was thrilled to lead Mansfield to victory as stand-in skipper with his son watching on – and dedicated the victory to the memory of his former boss Keith Alexander.
The goalkeeper wore a black armband as well as the captain's one in the 2-1 victory over his former club Lincoln.
He was pleased to finish on the winning side in a game that meant a lot to him for so many reasons, Ross Dyer and Gary Roberts getting the Stags goals.
"It was fantastic to skipper the side for this particularly game because it was two years to the day since Keith died suddenly when I was still at Lincoln," said Marriott.
"It made it very poignant and emotional, especially being against my former club, the place where I still live.
"My lad was also here and I made sure he was supporting Mansfield when he asked me who to support.
"He was here with my in-laws, who are Lincoln fans, so I don't think that will have gone down too well.
"I can't see him being too popular going in to school in Lincoln as a Mansfield fan either, but I'll leave him to sort that one out!"
Marriott admitted he was gutted to miss out on a clean sheet when he was beaten by a deflected stoppage-time goal by Mark McCammon.
He said: "It was a shot from Tyrone that I had to dive for and then it has hit Mark and I don't think he knew too much about it.
"Micky Moore said at half-time that the only way he could see them scoring was from a set piece or a deflection and he was right.
"But the main thing was to get the three points after all the off-the-field stuff this week, which the manager has tried to keep away from us as much as possible.
"Some of the players are probably only used to playing in front of 2,000 so they handled the circumstances of playing in front of a much bigger one pretty well."
Mansfield Town striker Ross Dyer confident Stags can make play-offs
MAN-OF-THE-Match Ross Dyer believes Stags will make the play-offs if they keep their current form going.
Stags narrowed the gap on Southport in the last play-off place to just one point with a game in hand on Saturday after a comfortable 2-1 against Lincoln City.
It was the sixth win in their last eight matches as Stags continued to build on their growing momentum.
Dyer capped an impressive all round display, in which he won virtually everything in the air, with his seventh goal of the season 64 seconds into the second half.
Speaking after the game the former Forest Green player said Stags just had to take care of their own results to keep their promotion dreams alive.
“We kept our minds firmly on the game and played well. We are getting the results at the right time of the season.
“Results have gone for us today and if we keep this run going then we will be in the play-offs because the other teams will drop points.”
Dyer also spoke of the importance of keeping fully focused on the task ahead after John Radford's deal to purchase the Field Mill freehold.
“It was a massive win for us. We kept away from the attention about the ground deal and just concentrated on football and getting the three points,” he said.
“From a personal point of view it is really pleasing to get on the scoresheet. I played a bit further up the park today and it felt more natural and allowed me to influence the game more.
“We need to capitalise on the win now. Cambridge United is a hard place to go, but we are in good form and there is no reason why we cannot beat them.”
Stags have not been inside the play-off places since their 3-1 win at Wrexham on 27th September, but know wins in their next two matches is likely to propel them into the top five
Latest | March 2012