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Archived News from December 2012

11th December 2012 21:57

Cox on Ebbsfleet test
6th December 2012

Manager Paul Cox has insisted that all focus within his first team camp is on Saturday's Blue Square Bet Premier encounter with Ebbsfleet United at One Call Stadium.

video interview with Paul Cox

The Stags go into the game against an Ebbsfleet side that slipped back into the bottom four after they lost on home soil to relegation-rivals Cambridge United in midweek.

“We've got a very important league game on Saturday,” said our boss, who was speaking at his weekly press conference.

“First and foremost, the league is our priority. We've got a couple of league games in hand over everyone else, and we're already playing catch up as it is.

“We won't tolerate anyone getting carried away with things. After Saturday, we'll concentrate on Lincoln City.”

Goalkeeper Alan Marriott is in contention for the Ebbsfleet game, having continued his recovery from a dislocated shoulder by playing another 90 minutes for our reserve team this week.

Cox continued: “Mazza's got another 90 minutes under his belt and it has done him the world of good. It was a full-blooded game against Hartlepool, so it's definitely helped him.”

“I want two keepers vying for a place in the team, so if he's fit for Saturday, he has to come into the equation.”

Our side will be looking to gain revenge on Liam Daish's men for a disappointing 3-1 defeat that we suffered at Stonebridge Road earlier this term.

The visitors will be without influential skipper Paul Lorraine for Saturday's clash, who is serving the last game of his three-match suspension for a straight red card that he received in November's FA Trophy defeat to Hereford United.

Our boss concluded: “Ebbsfleet have had some decent results recently. Grimsby went down there last week and only got a 1-1 draw, which proves how tight this league is.”


Goalkeeper Alan Marriott could be set for early return to Mansfield Town side
chad.co.uk, By Stephen Thirkill, Thursday 6 December 2012

SHOT-STOPPER Alan Marriott could make an early return from injury against Ebbslfeet United on Saturday.


The veteran goalkeeper dislocated his shoulder in late September and was expected to be out until Christmas time.

But Marriott completed another 90 minutes during the 3-2 reserve defeat against Hartlepool earlier in the week.

Boss Paul Cox said: “Alan played another 90 minutes in a competitive reserve game. I want to goalkeepers who are competing for the same place.

“There is a healthy competition for a place in the team between Shane and Alan and if Alan is fit for Saturday then he will be back in contention.”


Manfield Town need to fully focus on Blue Square Premier promotion bid, warns boss Paul Cox
chad.co.uk, By Stephen Thirkill, Thursday 6 December 2012

MANSFIELD boss Paul Cox says his players must put any thoughts of Liverpool to the back of their minds and focus fully on beating Ebbsfleet United on Saturday.


Stags, who have not played in the league since beating Macclesfield 3-0 away on 20th November, are currently ninth in the BSP table and four points behind Dartford in the final play-off place.

But Mansfield have the chance to narrow the gap on Saturday and have been bouyed after recent results went their way, with Dartford losing their last two matches and Grimsby and Wrexham both failing to win at the weekend.

And, although a money-spinning FA Cup tie against Liverpool could be on the horizon. boss Paul Cox knows league results will ultimately define the success of Mansfield's season.

“We need to put the FA Cup to the back of our minds and concentrate on Ebbsfleet,” said Cox.

“The lads have got to realise that the best way to stay in the team for the FA Cup is by playing well on Saturday against Ebbsfleet. Everyone has something to play for, there are some massive games ahead.

“We played very well against Luton, and should have won in my view, and we were excellent against Macclesfield before the break for the FA Trophy. In some ways the FA Trophy came at the wrong time for us.

“We need to keep that momentum going and get a few wins together to climb up the table. The results have gone for us in recent weeks and we need to capitalise on that. We want to be right up there at the end of the season.

“Ebbsfleet have had some decent results recently. The league is what counts and the players know that, I want us to go out there and get the win.”

Despite Stags being outside the play-off places, Cox is happy with how Mansfield's season is developing.

“The league is a tight league and automatic promotion is still a possibility for a lot of teams,” he added. “There is not a lot between the teams and it is the team that is most consitent which will get promotion.

“There are area's that we need to improve on, but I feel we are in a better position this season compared to this point last season.

“We are in a healthy league position and fighting for a place in the third round of the FA Cup.

“We are starting to get to an important part of the season now, the games are coming thick and fast and I can't wait for the festive games.

“Some people are looking at a possible game against Liverpool, but there is a lot of football to be played before then.

“We need to show the correct hunger and the right mindset to make a game against Liverpool possible.”


Mansfield Town striker Matt Green dreams of hitting FA Cup winner against Liverpool
chad.co.uk, By Stephen Thirkill, Thursday 6 December 2012

HOT-SHOT Stags striker Matt Green says he has pictured scoring the winning goal against Liverpool in the FA Cup.


Green scored once in the 3-3 draw against Lincoln City, which earned Mansfield a place in the hat and a chance to take on seven-times FA Cup winners Liverpool in the third round.

Stags will face the Anfield side, who last won the FA Cup in 2006 after beating West Ham, at One Call Stadium on 6th January in front of a national TV audience - if they can overcome David Holdsworth's Imps in the second round replay.

The mouth-watering FA Cup third round draw has created massive excitement amongst both fans and players.

Green, who bagged 29 goals in 45 BSP games last season, said: “I am overjoyed that we have drawn Liverpool. It is a dream draw for the players, fans and for everyone at the club.

“At the moment we are just focusing on Ebbsfleet and not thinking about Liverpool and what might be ahead.

“I have obviously thought a bit about the game and I've pictured myself scoring the winner, but of course we need to get the result against Lincoln first.

“As long as we tighten up a bit and get chances then we will beat Lincoln. We have got enough to beat them.“

And the former Oxford goal-getter is now hoping he is back to his best form after recently being dropped from the side following a dip in form.

“We are not robots and there is always pressures on being a striker,” he said. “I have been working hard in training, even when I wasn't in the team I was getting worked hard in training.

“You just have to go back to basics and doing what you are good at. I am glad I have got myself back into the team and started to score again.

“You just have to try and not worry about things when you are not scoring. I am still learning and maturing as a player.”

Green has so far scored seven times in 18 starts and two sub appearances


Chris Clements delighted to have regular run in Mansfield Town side By Stephen Thirkill
chad.co.uk, By Stephen Thirkill, Thursday 6 December 2012

STAGS midfielder Chris Clements says he is delighted to finally be enjoying a regular run in the Mansfield Town starting evelen.


The former Hednesford Town man has made 12 starts and two substitute appearances since joining Mansfield during the summer.

And, after a frustrating spell sitting on the sidelines earlier in the season, Clements has now seized his chance in the midfield berth.

“I have had a long wait to get in to the team, but that is football,” said Clements.

“I have got my chance now and I want to keep the shirt. You just have to work hard in training and the reserves and show the boss what you can do.

“Some times you have to wait for a loss of form or an injury to someone, but you don't want to get in the team that way, you want to get in on merit.

“It was a nice surprise when I got my first start. So far I have done well and the boss has seen enough of what I can do to keep me in the team.”

Clements will be hoping to keep his place in the side as Stags entertain relegation-threatened Ebbsfleet United on Saturday


Mansfield Town midfielder Chris Clements says Stags have what it takes to beat Lincoln City
chad.co.uk, By Stephen Thirkill, Thursday 6 December 2012

MIDFIELDER Chris Clements says Mansfield Town have enough in their arsenal to beat Lincoln City and set up a glamour FA Cup tie against Liverpool.


Stags dramatically levelled in the 92 minute at Sincil Bank through Matt Rhead's bullet header to set up a massive replay against David Holdsworth's Imps at One Call Stadium on 12th December.

The winners will face the 18 times champions of England in the FA Cup third round on 6th January in front of the ESPN cameras.

And the former Hednesford Town player, who has played 12 times for Stags so far this season, is confident it will be Stags and not Lincoln who will be facing Brendan Rodgers' men.

“We have had a brilliant draw to be honest,” said Clements. “There is added hype and added pressure on the replay now. On top of Liverpool, there is also the David Holdsworth factor and the fact that is local derby, but we have got enough to beat Lincoln

“We are delighted to have earned a replay. We now need to keep our nerve in the replay and if we do that we will beat Lincoln.”

But Clements, who graduated through Crewe's youth academy, knows that Saturday's Blue Square Premier game against relegation-threatened Ebbsfleet also comes with plenty of pressure for very different reasons.

“We need to concentrate on the league and getting promotion,” said Clements. “Ebbsfleet is a massive game. We did not do well down there earlier in the season and we want to put that right.

“Other results have gone our way. We have got to make the most of that and string a few wins together and keep our unbeaten run going,”

Mansfield v Lincoln is an all-ticket match for both sets of supporters. Ticket prices are £15 adults and £8 concessions.


Cup lure on hold for Mansfield Town
Friday, December 07, 2012 Nottingham Post

IN a week where talk of a potential clash with Liverpool has dominated discussions in Mansfield, it is easy to forget they have a game tomorrow, let alone who their opponents are.


Victory in next Wednesday's FA Cup replay with Lincoln will seal a dream third round home tie against the five-times European champions.

But manager Paul Cox has warned that any complacency from his side against Ebbsfleet tomorrow will see his players out of the team – and their own cup dreams potentially in tatters.

The Stags are four points off the play-offs with games in hand and Ebbsfleet are in the bottom four ahead of the One Call Stadium clash.

But they know it will be a difficult test, given the Stags wilted away to the same opposition, losing 3-1.

So, will all the cup talk be their undoing?

"The proof will be in the pudding in the next couple of weeks if this has been a distraction," said Cox.

"The fact is we have a very important league game and that is our priority. We are a couple of games behind teams and need to catch up.

"We can't stop the excitement about the FA Cup but we have to focus on this.

"The lads know if they want to play in the Lincoln replay they have to have a good performance tomorrow.

"We will not tolerate anybody getting carried away. First and foremost we have to look at tomorrow's game, nothing else."

Cox said the spirit in the camp has lifted further following the last-gasp Matt Rhead equaliser which earned a replay and their place in the FA Cup third round draw.

And the Stags boss said he could not emphasise how big a period it is coming up for his side in order to make their season a success.

"Results keep going for us in the league and as soon as we get our act together, it can be anybody's league," he said.

"The lads feel buoyed after Saturday and we are looking forward to this game.

"Sometimes it is better for team spirit scoring a last-minute goal like that.

"We have got to improve, we know that. We want to be coming into the Christmas period in good form but more importantly, coming round that bend in good form.

"We have to keep everybody's feet on the floor and we need the right mind-set tomorrow."


Spotlight on Mansfield Town v Ebbsfleet
Friday, December 07, 2012 Nottingham Post

Stags: Redmond, Beevers, Thompson, Dempster, Geohaghon, Murray, Clements, Briscoe, Green, Hutchinson, Speight, Meikle, Rhead, Wright, Howell, Sutton, Stevenson, Jones, Marriott.


Team news: Stags boss Paul Cox might be tempted to stick with the same side that drew with Lincoln at the weekend but he will be hoping veteran goalkeeper Alan Marriott feels fit after recovering from a shoulder injury. Ritchie Sutton is also pushing for a recall into the back four, after being on the bench at Lincoln. Gary Roberts serves the second match of his suspension.

Ebbsfleet: Edwards, Ada, Barrett, Azeez, Carew, Stone, Howe, Phipp, Bellamy, Enver-Marum, Walsh, Godden, Ashikodi, Greenhalgh, Akinde, Menz

Team news: Liam Daish is likely to shake things up following the 4-2 home defeat to Cambridge. But they have had some good news in that they have extended the loan spell of Scunthorpe striker Matt Godden.

Danger man: Matt Godden. The 21-year-old Scunthorpe striker has made a real impact during his loan move. He has made two starts and one substitute appearance in the Blue Square Bet Premier – scoring in all three games. He will be looking to keep that sequence going at the One Call Stadium today


Mansfield Town vs Ebbsfleet United: Alan Marriott set for Stags recall
Friday, December 07, 2012 This is Nottingham

Mansfield manager Paul Cox could welcome back goalkeeper Alan Marriott into his squad for Ebbsfleet's visit to the One Call Stadium.


Marriott is back in contention after coming through his second reserve match unscathed following a 10 week spell on the sidelines with a dislocated shoulder.

Cox will be without midfielder Gary Roberts who serves the second game of his two-match ban.

Midfielder Adam Murray came through last weekend's draw with Lincoln City unscathed after recovering from a knock that had kept him out of the FA Trophy defeat to Matlock.

The Stags, who sit ninth in the Blue Square Bet Premier table, lost 3-1 to Ebbsfleet when the two sides met in September but have only been beaten twice since then.

Ebbsfleet boss Liam Daish will be without suspended defender Paul Lorraine for the trip.

Lorraine sits out the third game of his three-match ban after he was sent off during the FA Trophy defeat to Hereford.

The Fleet will hand a late fitness test to leading goalscorer Nathan Elder who has missed his side's last three games with an ankle injury. Daish is hopeful that he will return but the game could come too soon for the 10-goal centre forward.

Meanwhile, midfielder Ram Marwa remains out with the knee problem that has kept him sidelined since October.

Daish's men will be looking to end their recent winless run that has seen them fall to 22nd in the league table


Time to close in on leading pack – Cox
Saturday, December 08, 2012 Nottingham Post

IT IS hard to believe that today's game with Ebbslfeet is Mansfield Town's only league match in the space of a month.


After beginning to gain some momentum with an impressive performance in the draw with Luton followed by a 3-0 win at Macclesfield 48 hours later, they have been stopped in their tracks.

Two games with Matlock followed in the FA Trophy, the Stags exiting in the first round replay and then last week, they drew 3-3 with Lincoln in the FA Cup.

A replay awaits next Wednesday with the winners meeting Liverpool in the third round while next weekend, Paul Cox's men are without a game because of their early exit from the Trophy.

So, their last Blue Square Bet Premier outing was on November 20 and their next, after today, is away to Hyde on Saturday December 22. It makes the need to pick up three points even greater.

And while not ideal, Cox insists all focus has to be on today's game at the One Call Stadium.

He said: "The FA Trophy came at the wrong time. We wanted league games because against Luton, we deserved to win and then went to Macclesfield and were excellent.

"We have some catch-up with games but automatic promotion is a realistic ambition for a lot of clubs. We want to be in the pack that is chasing promotion so we have to pick up consistent results. We have this game and we need the points.

"The razzmatazz games are brilliant but it is the league that is the bread and butter."

A big crowd is expected for the replay next week but Cox hopes the Stags faithful get right behind the team today, as they look to build into the cup game with a victory. They sit ninth in the table, four points off the play-offs and ten points behind leaders Newport.

"I said from the first minute I walked into here that the supporters will have a major say in how successful we will be," said Cox. "High expectation leads to anxiety on the pitch and when footballers are playing with anxiety and stress, it is not a good thing.

"At Lincoln the supporters were amazing and it was like playing at home.

"If they are positive, the energy they create in this stadium is immense"

Supporters who purchase a ticket for the home matches against Lincoln City next Wednesday and Alfreton Town on Boxing Day will be given 'third priority' to buy tickets against Liverpool in the third round of the FA Cup, should the Stags overcome the Imps in the replay. Season-ticket holders get first priority, SSA members second priority


Ebbsfleet United aim to capitalise on any possible distractions affecting opponents Mansfield Town
By Craig Tucker

Ebbsfleet are aiming to take advantage if Mansfield's players have Liverpool on their minds on Saturday.

Town will host the Premier League club in the FA Cup third round if they beat Lincoln in a replay on Wednesday.

Fleet dropped back into the Blue Square Bet Premier bottom four after a 4-2 home defeat by Cambridge on Tuesday. It was their first defeat in seven league games and they are looking to bounce back at Mansfield.

Fleet boss Liam Daish (pictured), who could welcome back league player-of-the-month Nathan Elder from an ankle injury, is unsure how the hosts will be feeling in light of the cup draw.

He said: "Liverpool may be on their minds, it depends on the individual. There must be a lot of excitement up there with such a big prize at stake if they win their replay but all we can do is concentrate on our own game.

"It's hard to say if it gives us a better chance because we don't know how their camp are seeing things but it will be a tough game whatever.

"I'd love to be in their position but for us it's all about trying to get three points on Saturday."


Tom Miller warns Lincoln City not to get caught up in FA Cup mania
Friday, December 07, 2012 Lincolnshire Echo

Tom Miller insists Lincoln City must "shutoff" from the hysteria surrounding their FA Cup replay against Mansfield or risk losing valuable ground in the league.


The Imps slipped to a 2-0 defeat against Woking at Sincil Bank on Tuesday night, which denied them the chance of closing in on the Blue Square Bet Premier's top five.

The result followed the dramatic 3-3 draw against Mansfield in the FA Cup with the winners of the replay facing Liverpool in the third round.

Imps boss David Holdsworth said the excitement surrounding the game has driven him crazy with talk in the city all focused on the cup.

The Imps boss wants his side to concentrate on their important league trip to Dartford on Saturday and Miller says the players must not get ahead of themselves.

"I don't believe for one minute that the cup draw and the excitement it brought with it affected the performance on Tuesday," he said.

"That would be a very lame excuse. It was one of those nights when it was not to be – a bad day at the office.

"I understand there is a lot of excitement about the possibility of playing Liverpool, but I have been in the game long enough to know you take each game as it comes.

"Considering where we are in the league that is what is most important to us.

"The gaffer has drummed it into the players how we should not be looking ahead to anything, be it Mansfield or whoever.

"We have to shutoff from what is going on with the FA Cup and concentrate on the here and now, otherwise you lose focus.

"And if that happens we could start losing ground on the sides above us which is something we don't want."

Lincoln will be hoping to produce an excellent performance against Dartford at the weekend which would give them the perfect boost ahead of Wednesday's trip to Mansfield.

Miller says it is imperative Lincoln go into that game on the back of a good result given what is at stake.

"It's absolutely massive we produce a good performance on Saturday, just to give us that shot of extra confidence ahead of the Mansfield game," he said.

"I am sure we will do. The lads are disappointed with what happened on Tuesday and are desperate to put it right.

"Not only that, the players are fighting for their place for Wednesday's game against Mansfield too.

"So there is a lot of stake, but I am positive we will go there and give a good account of ourselves."

Miller says he expects to be fit for the trip to Princes Park having missed Tuesday's defeat because of a groin problem.

"I am hoping to be back for the weekend's game," he said.

"I did a bit with the physio before the Woking game and I am sure I will be fine – I want to play."



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