COX AND WEIR REACTION / COX TO BID FOR NEW STRIKER
Cox to bid for new striker
mansfieldtown.net 20th July 2013
Boss Paul Cox has confirmed that he is in the process of finalising a bid for a new striker.
Paul Cox was speaking to mansfieldtown.net via Stags Player after the match. Full interview available on StagsPlayer this evening.
short video at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/cox-to-bid-for-new-striker-932791.aspx#TT86vLCmdc4XF0HH.99
Our manager, who held unsuccessful talks with a different League One striker earlier this week, has now looked elsewhere as he looks to bolster our attack.
“We’re on the verge of putting an offer in for another striker,” said Cox, who was speaking after this afternoon’s defeat to Sheffield United.
“It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to work out what we need, but these strikers are very hard to come by at any level.
“Ideally we’re looking for someone in the Matt Green mould. Hopefully we’ll have somebody in by the start of the season.”
Reflecting on our match with The Blades, in which Febian Brandy’s strike earned the visitors a victory, our boss admitted there are still areas that we can improve.
“Pre-Season is all about fitness and we’ve got some fit players at the moment,” said Cox.
“Our performance improved in the second half and we were a lot more cohesive. There are still things that we can improve, but we’ve learned a lot in the last two matches.
He added: “Players are working hard, not just to get in the XI, but to stay at this club.”
More reaction will follow on StagsPlayer.
Paul Cox close to knowing line-up for League Two opener against Scunthorpe United
chad.co.uk by Stephen Thirkill firstname.lastname@example.org
Stags boss Paul Cox says he is very close to knowing his starting line-up for Mansfield Town’s League Two opener against Scunthorpe United in two weeks time.
Cox was speaking after watching his side fall to a 1-0 defeat against promotion hopefuls Sheffield United following a disappointing display in which Stags failed to get into their stride.
Febian Brandy hit the only goal of the game after five minutes in a match which the Blades looked comfortable throughout as Stags failed to show any real creativity or goal threat.
But, despite the poor showing, Cox said the game had been an excellent work out in which he had learned a lot about his players.
“It was a good workout today but it was a poor result, I don’t think we really got started,” said Cox.
“I wont get too down about it, when you win in pre-season it is important not to get carried away and when you lose it is important not to get too down.
“We were up against a very good side, who I expect to get promoted. They are a big club.
“There is a lot we can improve on, but pre-season is all about fitness and getting to know more about the players.
“We looked better in the second half and were a bit more cohesive. We have had a very good week and I am happy with the fitness levels.
“I have learned a lot about the players and I am close to knowing what the starting line-up will be against Scunthorpe.
“It is now up to the players to make the place in the starting line-up their own.”
The victory leaves Sheffield United unbeaten in pre-season, with four wins out of their five matches so far.
Mansfield continue their pre-season preparations on Tuesday night when they make the short trip to Rainworth MW for a 7.30pm kick off at Kirklington Road
Mansfield Town on the verge of bidding for new striker
chad.co.uk 20 July by Stephen Thirkill email@example.com
Mansfield Town boss Paul Cox says the club is on the verge of putting in a bid for a new striker.
The move comes just days after negotiations to replace last season’s Blue Square Premier top scorer Matt Green with an unnamed League One striker.
Cox said: “We are on the verge of putting an offer in to another club. We are also running our eyes over a number of other players this week.
“It is clear that we need more in that department and we are looking at a number of different options for strikers.
“Replacing a player like Matt Green who scored the amount of goals he did for the club is always going to be tough.
“It is important we do not rush into it and that we get the right player.”
Cox also confirmed that trialists Arnold and Morgan-Smith will also be given another chance to win a contract with the One Call Stadium club after failing to impress against Sheffield United.
“I don’t think we saw the best of either of them today,” said Cox. “Arnold has been very good for us and Morgan-Smith looked exceptional against Chester.
“It is important we do not rush the decision on their future. They will be given another chance to win a contract at the club. We need a good balance to our squad and plenty of options.
Sheffield United: Weir wants substance and style
by James Shield
David Weir, the Sheffield United manager, insists his team have answered some important questions ahead of next month’s opening League One fixture against Notts County despite expressing concerns about the confrontational nature of last weekend’s friendly at Mansfield Town, writes James Shield.
The strong-arm approach employed by members of Paul Cox’s incurred the visitors’ wrath during the closing stages of Saturday’s contest, with members of United’s coaching staff making their displeasure known following several reckless challenges.
Weir admitted he “didn’t like some of the things that were going on out there,” after watching Febian Brandy’s goal extend his players’ unbeaten run to five games.
But, having drawn a line under the affair afterwards, he told The Star: “From our perspective, it’s shown that we can also handle the physical aspects of the game and we can take a positive from that.
“I thought the lads acquitted themselves well and stuck to the task in hand when they could easily have gone the other way.
“We passed the ball very well at times and that was pleasing. But in football, it’s also important to be able to look after yourself in the right manner as well. And they demonstrated they go do that as well.”
United, who return to competitive action on August 2, entertain Atromitos FC, of the Greek Superleague, in three days time before completing their preparations for County’s visit at York City less than 24 hours later.
Centre-forward Lyle Taylor is expected to feature in at least one of those matches after making his United debut as a second-half substitute at Field Mill. He completed a £250,000 transfer from Falkirk last week having scored 29 goals in 42 appearances for the Scots.
David Weir remains happy with United pre-season progress, following a fourth win from five outings to date, this time a 1-0 victory over Mansfield Town.
Febian Brandy scored the only goal of the game at Field Mill, his first in United colours, to pave the way for a third consecutive victory, but Weir looked beyond the result in his post-match analysis:
"I knew Mansfield would give us a test physically, but I was really impressed by how the players dealt with it.
"If you don't have that two-goal cushion, you are always vulnerable in any game and you would always expect the opposition to give it a real go.
"We looked better going forward and had more efforts on goal; hopefully we will become more clinical as things progress in the next week or so.
"We have got all the lads at a good level and the obvious progression now is to get 90 minutes into the legs of as many as possible.
"I am happy with the players that got through the game at the weekend and looking ahead to Monday at Alfreton Town, the aim will be the same."
Weir confirmed his reasoning for introducing Lyle Taylor as a second-half substitute against the Stags and insisted Friday's home friendly against Atromitos forms a vital part of his pre-season plans.
He added: "The players suit my style of play and philosophies; I honestly believe we have a very talented group of capable players here.
"I am happy with what we have at our disposal and their application has been terrific since day one.
"Chris (Porter) deserved his start and it wouldn't have been fair to throw Lyle (Taylor) straight into the action, we need to monitor and progress his fitness.
"I always felt a home friendly was missing from the pre-season schedule, so for my staff and more importantly the players we felt it was imperative that we had a rehearsal for the Notts County game."
Read more at http://www.sufc.co.uk/news/article/20130722-progressing-nicely-934930.aspx?#mXBatHuzAZ8fBFbj.99
Match Report: Mansfield Town 0 Sheffield United 1
by James Shield
Sheffield United have been at pains to keep a low profile as preparations for the new season continue to gather pace.
But facets of this performance, which maintained their unbeaten record under David Weir’s stewardship, will only fuel suspicions they are destined to enjoy a profitable campaign.
A flurry of changes during the closing stages interrupted the visitors’ rhythm and threatened to allow Mansfield Town, whose over-zealous tackling later incurred Weir’s wrath, a route back into the game.
But there were moments when United simply bamboozled Paul Cox’s side with their passing.
The sight of some gilt-edged chances going begging will have been Weir’s only real cause for concern.
Kevin McDonald, again deployed in a more attacking role, delivered a glowing assessment of tactics Weir and his staff have employed after watching Febian Brandy’s effort settle Saturday’s robust contest.
“It’s been a breath of fresh air to be honest,” the midfielder said. “I’ve been playing as a ’number 10’ lately and I’m loving every minute of it.
“I’ve not been asked to do that since I was a kid coming through at Dundee. And it was back then that I scored a lot of goals so hopefully I can do that again.
“If the manager wants to carry on doing that when the real stuff starts then brilliant. Obviously you can contribute more in an attacking sense up there.
“But if not, and he wants to go with something else, then that’s okay too. I’ll get my head down and battle hard for a place.”
Sharp focus and steely determination have quickly become the hallmarks of Weir’s embryonic reign, with the former Scotland international deliberately shying away from making any bold pronouncements about his team’s intentions next term.
Indeed Weir, who confirmed Conor Coady’s loan signing from Liverpool should be processed this morning, has mentioned the dreaded ‘p’ word on only a handful of occasions since taking charge of the South Yorkshire club nearly two months ago.
It is still far too soon to draw any conclusions about how the promotion race will unfold but McDonald said: “Things are coming along nicely and we came through a real physical test out there so that’s probably answered a few question too.
“All we can do is keep working on what we’re doing and trying to get better, improve in every way we possibly can.”
United’s failings in the opposition box had a corrosive effect upon their confidence last season, with both tactics and form unravelling en route to May’s ill-fated play-off semi-final with Yeovil Town.
Lyle Taylor’s presence in the squad which travelled to Field Mill - the 23-year-old completed a £250,000 transfer to Bramall Lane on Wednesday following a prolific spell at Falkirk - confirms Weir has made tackling that problem his top priority ahead of August 2’s League One curtain-raiser with Notts County.
Taylor, who entered the fray on the hour, showcased the awareness and opportunism which saw him average a goal every 1.4 games north of the border during a lively 30-minute cameo.
But, despite unleashing a powerful shot during the closing stages, he was unable to increase the margin of victory.
“We should have been four or five up at one point, to be honest,” McDonald said. “That was the only real disappointment for me, that we didn’t get more.
“We created enough and got into some good positions but, looking at what happened out there, I know that part of things is definitely going to come.
“Fair play to Mansfield, they pressed us as the match went on and
they had a few openings themselves.
“But things are coming along nicely overall and I definitely thought we deserved to come out on top.”
United, stung into action by Matt Rhead’s early attempt, required only three minutes to take the lead courtesy of Brandy’s close-range finish.
Brandy, profiting from Darryl Westlake’s centre, went close to adding a second after Jamie Murphy’s free-kick had earlier tested Alan Marriott but the Mansfield goalkeeper stood firm.
Murphy, like Brandy, seemingly granted freedom to roam, continued to pepper Marriott’s goal while Chris Porter drew an excellent block from the former Tottenham Hotspurs trainee following McDonald’s defence-splitting pass.
United started the second half in the same fashion they had the first. Mansfield, being suffocated by the visitors’ possession, should have fallen further behind soon after the interval but McDonald scooped wide.
The League Two club showed flashes of potential - most notably when substitute Jamie McGuire sent George Long scampering across his line - before a fine period of pressure culminated in the United youngster denying Lee Stevenson.
Long was called upon again, this time to smother at the feet of Amari Morgan-Smith as Mansfield grew in stature but they were unable to restore parity.
“Overall, I thought we acquitted ourselves well against a team I expect to be right up there with the best in their division next season,” Cox said.
“This time of year is all about fitness levels and although it’s always nice to win I’m not going to be too downhearted that we didn’t do that here.”
MANSFIELD: Marriott, Beevers (Sutton 62), Black, Dempster, McCombe (Tafazolli 24), Murtagh, Speight (Morgan-Smith 46), Clucas (Arnold 46), Daniel (Meikle 42), Howell (McGuire 62), Rhead (Stevenson 46). Not used: Riley, Dyer, Hutchinson, Clements, Pilkington, Murray.
UNITED: Long, Westlake, Williams, Maguire, Doyle (Whitehouse 81), Porter (Taylor 60), Brandy (McFadzean 76), Murphy (Johns 60), McGinn, Collins, McDonald. Not used: Howard, Hill, McGinty.
REFEREE: M Naylor.
GOAL: Brandy 3.
Latest | July 2013