ALABI LOAN NOT EXTENDED / BURTON PREVIEWS
video interview with Paul Cox, 25th November 2013
Cox to assess fitness of duo
mansfieldtown.net, 25th November 2013
Manager Paul Cox will assess the fitness of both Lee Stevenson and Lee Beevers, after the duo were substituted as a precautionary measure in Saturday’s 5-4 loss at Fleetwood Town.
Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/cox-to-assess-fitness-of-duo-1195369.aspx#u78oCFtlBiCvPRwh.99
Beevers was replaced by James Jennings on the hour-mark at Highbury, before Stevenson was taken off with an ankle problem, just seven minutes later.
“Stevo’ took a knock and went over on his ankle. We’ll know more later this morning,” said our boss.
“Beevs’ wasn’t feeling too well at half-time, so we gave him five or 10 minutes to see if he was feeling any better, but we had to take him off.
“We’ll assess those two today and see where we go from that, but if it’s not illness or injuries, sometimes we’re giving ourselves a mountain to climb.”
Cox continued: “What I mean by that is we’ve had four defeats on the trot now and in two of those games, we’ve played with 10 men for long periods.
“Then, on Saturday, we gave ourselves a mountain to climb by conceding a sloppy goal after about a minute.
“We worked extremely hard [to get back in the game], played some great stuff and scored some great goals, but then gave the game away.
“What I want to do is get the boys re-focussed, and then I’ll make any decisions if they need to be made, in terms of personnel.”
Reflecting further on Saturday’s extraordinary encounter, our boss added: “There were some excellent individual performances.
“Chris Clements, Ollie Palmer, Sam Clucas and Junior Daniel were all on a different level and I feel a bit gutted for some of the players, because I don’t think that they deserved to be on the losing side.
“The main thing now is about getting the boys focussed again and back on their feet, but little things are hurting us at the minute.
“We can’t give teams goals advantage or a man advantage consistently, and hope to win a football match.”
Meanwhile, our boss also confirmed that youngster James Alabi is unlikely to stay with us, now his month-long loan from Stoke City has expired.
“I don’t think we’re going to be taking it any further,” said Cox. “I was with the chairman yesterday and we spoke about it, but we’ve also got the emergence of Ollie Palmer.
“Anyone who saw him on Saturday will know that he was a real handful against potentially one of the best centre-back partnerships at this level.
“It was a tough decision, but what I don’t want to do is bring people in from other football clubs, when I’ve got players here who I think are going to get better and be a part of this football club for a long time.”
Paul Cox’s full pre-match press conference ahead of tomorrow night’s trip to Burton Albion will be available on Stags Player later today. To subscribe, click here.
Alabi heading back to Stoke before Stags’ Burton trip
James Alabi has returned to Stoke City after just 31 minutes of action in a Mansfield Town shirt.
The loanee striker spent much of his loan serving a three-game ban for his red card on his Stags debut at Southend.
However, manager Paul Cox today said: “I don’t think we will be taking things any further with James.
“I had a chat with the chairman yesterday and, with the emergence of Ollie Palmer and the form of Sam Clucas, we want to develop our own young players, who are the same age as James, instead of developing young players from other clubs.
“It is a tough decision as I think the kid has incredible potential. We will be keeping an eye on him and, with injuries and suspensions, you never know.
“Anyone who saw Ollie on Saturday knows how well he led the line against one of the best centre back pairings at this level of football.
“He was a real handful and the potential in him is immense.”
Stags head to Burton on a run of eight without a win after being pipped at the death 5-4 in Saturday’s amazing shoot-out at Fleetwood Town.
Stags aiming to brew up a win to halt losing run
Mansfield Town head to Burton Albion tonight (7.45pm) hoping they can end a four-game League losing streak and a run of eight League Two games without a win.
After they were pipped 5-4 in stoppage time at high-flying Fleetwood, manager Paul Cox was furious with his side’s defending.
But he mellowed yesterday and said: “After a game I speak with my heart, but after watching the DVD, you can see we have gone to a club that have been in the top three all season and that have an excellent home record, and we have scored four times and seen their keeper make three world class saves.
“We also gifted them three of their five goals.
“But there were some excellent individual performances and I feel a bit gutted for some of the players as I don’t think they deserved to be on the losing side.
“Now we need to get back our focus and stop giving goals away. We have the nucleus here of a really good side, but we keep giving ourselves a mountain to climb.
“I know what these boys are capable of. Only seven or eight weeks ago people were tipping us for the promised land. We have just lost four on the trot but no one has out-played us. We just cut our own throat.”
Jamie McGuire serves the second of his three game ban tonight.
Lee Beevers (illness), Jake Speight (knee) and Lee Stevenson (ankle) all face fitness tests to face a Brewers side that currently sit seventh.
Burton midfielder Jimmy Phillips is suspended for one game after being sent off in Saturday's 1-0 win against Bristol Rovers.
Goalkeeper Dean Lyness keeps his place after Sunderland recalled loanee Jordan Pickford, while striker Michael Symes (groin) is yet to prove his fitness.
EARLIER STORY TO CLARIFY WHEN ALABI'S LOAN EXPIRED:
Striker James Alabi has completed his transfer on a one month loan from Stoke City, following confirmation by the Football League this afternoon.
The teenage frontman has joined us on a short-term loan deal, and is eligible to figure for us until our match at Fleetwood Town on Saturday 23 November.
Latest | November 2013