COX, STEVENSON, RICHIE BARKER REACTION
Cox satisfied with Pompey point
Manager Paul Cox believes our side picked up a valuable point at Fratton Park this afternoon following a 1-1 draw against Portsmouth.
Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/cox-satisfied-with-pompey-point-1302576.aspx#q288ZFqgvVuxrshJ.99
Stags took the lead early on in the second half courtesy of an acrobatic close-range finish from Lee Stevenson, before the hosts equalised in the 77th minute through debutant Ryan Taylor.
Cox was particularly pleased with how our players started the second half.
“I think when you go ahead like we did; I thought we were in control of the game at that point,” said Cox.
“You would probably say it was two points dropped but saying that, when you look at the substitutions that came on for Portsmouth, the names and the levels they have played at, they made a massive impact and threw the kitchen sink at us meaning we had to hold on at the end.
“The last 10 to 15 minutes were quite edgy, but looking at the chances we had in the second half, I thought we controlled the first 20 minutes or to an extent, even the first 25 minutes.
“We had some good chances with their goalkeeper notably pulling off a good save from Ross Dyer on to the post.
“We got the ball down, popped it about and looked really comfortable, but saying that I thought we did become a little bit anxious.
“It’s not a bad point away from home. When you look at the players they have got returning, plus the statue of the club, to come away from anywhere and grab a point is good.”
Meanwhile, the Stags boss has urged our players to start picking up more points at home following a good run of form on the road which has now seen us pick up seven points from nine.
Our manager also praised Mansfield Town’s travelling supporters this afternoon and has asked the One Call Stadium faithful to get behind our team again next weekend against Wycombe Wanderers.
Cox continued: “We just said to the lads in there that the home form needs turning around. It’s our home form that is the problem for us at the moment and we are working extremely hard to rectify that.
“The supporters were 'out of this world' today. They were basically like an extra man for us in those last five minutes when we were hanging on. I think we need that at home now - we need the fans to get behind us.
“It’s the home form that is a problem for us at the moment, so if we can get that off our back we will ultimately climb the table.”
On his hunt for a new striker : "I'm working extremely hard. I tried to get one in for today but it didn't work [out]. I'll be meeting with one on Monday/Tuesday and I'd like to think we'll have a new face in for next weekend."
Cox on verge of bringing in new striker for Mansfield
Mansfield Town manager Paul Cox is hopeful of bringing in one, and maybe two, strikers early next week.
Speaking after today’s 1-1 draw at Portsmouth, he was also full of praise for another decent away display from his players while admitting home form now had to improve.
Cox has not managed to bring in any new faces in the January transfer window yet and said: “I tried to get one in for today but that didn’t work.
“Now I am hoping Monday or Tuesday we will bring a few face in, maybe two.
“We need that fox in the box with experience.”
Stags led at Portsmouth through a Lee Stevenson goal until the home side snatched a point 12 minutes from time.
“We were in front and I thought we were in control of the game for the first 20-25 minutes of the second half. So it feels like two points dropped.
“We had chances in that second half and a second goal kills the game totally. Their keeper made a good save from Ross Dyer.
“I thought we looked a little more cohesive as a unit in the second half and got the ball down and passed it better.
“But you only have to look at the subs that they brought on and the quality and level they have played at. They made a massive impact.
“The boy Connolly came on and he is a class player and a wonderful footballer. That’s the calibre we are dealing with.
“Portsmouth is a tough place to come and the boys worked very hard again. With the players they have coming back I can’t see Portsmouth being down where they are for long.
“We were looking edgy near the end when they threw everything at us. We looked a bit anxious and sat a bit too deep and ultimately we conceded a goal.
“But it wasn’t a bad away point. We look comfortable away from home and are picking up a point or three.
“We now need to start doing that at home. It’s our home form that is our bogey and if we can get that off our backs, ultimately we will start climbing the table.
“I thought our supporters were absolutely out of this world today and were like an extra man for us in that last five minutes.
“Now we need them to get behind us at home.”
Mansfield Town confident of striker signing
Nottingham Post by Matt Halfpenny
MANSFIELD Town boss Paul Cox is quietly confident of bringing in at least one striker by the time the Stags take on Wycombe Wanderers at the weekend.
Read more: http://www.nottinghampost.com/Mansfield-Town-confident-striker-signing/story-20470740-detail/story.html#ixzz2r1S8lF3r
He is in talks with two hitmen who have experience at Championship level and is expecting to meet with them early this week to discuss terms.
One of the proposed deals would be a permanent signing while the other would be a loan.
"The first is an experienced player who's been around the block a few times and played and scored goals in the Championship last year," said Cox.
"Another is one who I have had an eye on for a while. He's a young player at a Championship club who has a great goalscoring record.
"They are quick lads with pace and power, which I want because I want them to go and play off a Matt Rhead or Ross Dyer.
"Both would bring something extra, that bit of guile and sophistication to us.
"The stage we are at now we need someone to finish chances when we are 1-0 up and need to get a second to kill it off.
"I'd like to think we can get something done and I've had really positive chats with the chairman."
Mansfield's 1-1 draw at Portsmouth means they have now lost just once in their last five games - to league leaders Scunthorpe United.
But they have not won at home in ten matches dating back to the end of September and Cox is hoping the home support can do their bit to help.
He said: "The fans made some great noise at Portsmouth, among a big crowd, but we need that at home now.
"Even if things go wrong, we need to be positive.
"They were out of this world down there when we were hanging on in the last five minutes and if the fans get behind us to help us pick up three points at home, then we will ultimately climb the table.
"We're picking up points away, we just need to get the monkey off our backs when it comes to the home form and we're working hard to address it."
Cox indicated that Sam Clucas is unlikely to figure in either of the two upcoming home games against Wycombe and Bury but may be in contention for the trip to Plymouth on February 1 as he continues his comeback from ankle ligament damage.
Bitter sweet result for Stevenson
Midfielder Lee Stevenson believes this afternoon’s 1-1 draw at Portsmouth was a good result despite our players feeling slightly disappointed at not grabbing all three points at Fratton Park.
Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/bitter-sweet-result-for-stevo-1303237.aspx?#6TgC59mR4QLMgUH4.99
Stags took the lead early on in the second half, after Stevenson aerobically finished his effort following James Jennings’ assist, before Pompey pulled a goal back with 13 minutes to go, earning a share of the spoils.
Stevenson praised our defensive display this afternoon, in which was to be another hard earned point on the road.
The 29-year-old said: “I think before the game you would have definitely taken a point at Fratton Park, but to come in at half time at 0-0, well in the game and then to start the second half like we did, the lads are in there now disappointed.
“Anyone that was involved in the game will tell you, teams are going to have spells in any match where they might be on top for 20 minutes.
“Portsmouth have 15,000 people here, their gaffer has thrown another striker on so they have three or four strikers up front at times. They’ve just gone for it so you have to expect pressure.
“Mazza (Alan Marriott) has also pulled off a fantastic save at 1-0 and we have gone on to defend for our lives in the last 15 minutes.”
On personal note, Stevenson was delighted with his fifth goal of the season which put Stags ahead early on in the second half.
Stevenson continued: “It’s one for the scrap book. Darryl Westlake has put a great ball across and JJ (James Jennings) has put a great header back across goal as I’ve acrobatically put my leg up there with an over-head kick and it has gone into the top corner.
“It’s nice to score goals at places like this and to get a goal like that is just fantastic really.
“The group that we have got in the changing rooms all see this place (Fratton Park) as a Premier League ground, so to come down here and start the second half like we did, being on top and scoring a goal is brilliant."
Stevenson savours special goal for Stags at Pompey
Lee Stevenson enjoyed his fantastic overhead finish in front of the home fans in Stags’ 1-1 draw at Portsmouth yesterday.
“That was one for the scrapbook, that one,” he smiled.
“We started the second half brilliantly and Westy (Darryl Westlake) put a great ball across.
“I don’t know what he was doing up there, but JJ (James Jennings) then got in a great header back across goal.
“It went behind me but I have just put my leg out for an overhead kick and it’s gone in the top corner.
“It’s always nice to score goals, but to get one like that at a place like that was fantastic really.”
He added: “Before the game we’d have taken a point from Fratton Park. But to come in 0-0 at half-time and well in the game and then start the second half like we did, the lads are disappointed.
“Anyone involved in the game will tell you teams will always have spells. They stuck three or four up front and went hell for leather.
“We had to defend for our lives again like we did at Exeter, but couldn’t hold on this time.
“It was a great effort from the travelling supporters today. They stuck with us.”
Barker Praises Super Subs
by Neil Weld
Boss hails the roles of Connolly and Jervis against Mansfield
Read more at http://www.portsmouthfc.co.uk/news/article/barker-praises-super-subs-1303038.aspx#qBBQPVA1ZQQZFujE.99
Trailing 1-0 to Mansfield and starting to run out of ideas going forward, Richie Barker made a bold attacking move.
The Blues boss replaced two midfielders with two strikers, chucking on David Connolly and debutant Jake Jervis.
And the gamble paid off as the former - just seconds after hitting the post - teed up Ryan Taylor for an equaliser.
“It was important that we didn’t let a rot set in,” said Barker. “So we made the substitutions to try to give ourselves a lift and they both looked bright.
“I thought David was excellent and did exactly what we asked him to. He looked bright and sharp - him and Nicky Shorey just looked cleverer than anyone else.
“He was influential when he came on, but can we put him out there for 90 minutes week in, week out? Probably not.
“We have to use him when we can, but we’ve also got more options up front now with Ryan and Jake.”
Despite fighting back for a draw, Barker was frustrated this side were not able to claim all three points.
He said: “I wasn’t pleased with the result, but I was pleased with about 80 per cent of the performance.
“We quite clearly should have won the game because we had the most chances and were far the better team.
“We started the game pretty well and then lost our way a bit, but I thought we were excellent towards the end.
“We’ve dropped two points because we deserved more, but that’s one defeat in five and we have to take the positives from that.”
Simon Ferry limped off early in the second half with a recurrence of the hamstring injury that has plagued the midfielder for much of the season.
Barker said: “It’s the same as what he’s had before - the same old problem. It comes back every couple of weeks, but hopefully it’s not as bad as it has been before.”
Barker's Mansfield verdict: They were punch drunk
See more at: http://www.fansnetwork.co.uk/football/portsmouth/news/33833/barkers-mansfield-verdict-they-were-punch-drunk?#sthash.krLLSmIO.dpuf
Richie Barker is delighted his side have now lost only one of their last five - but admits they are recording too many draws.
He felt Pompey had Mansfield on the ropes at the end of the teams' 1-1 draw at Fratton which leaves Pompey still too close for comfort to the bottom two.
Barker sad: 'They (Mansfield) looked like a boxer who was punch drunk. I think they were desperate for the whistle. I think if you'd have offered them the whistle for the last half an hour, they'd have taken it.
'Our decision-making in the final third wasn't great and it let us down the odd time. But it was wave after wave of attack and fair play to the lads. They responded extremely well after going a goal down.
'I'm disappointed because we should have won the game. On the performance, I was pleased with 80 per cent of it. But the 15 minutes where we lost our way a little bit in the second half cost us. I'm full of praise for the way our players came back and their desire not to lose the game. I thought we were fantastic for the last half an hour, but it's a shame we had to go behind for that to happen.
'The positive is we've lost one in five now. We've drawn too many, but we're hopefully becoming difficult to beat. The momentum and belief is starting to grow and I genuinely believe that if we'd played another five minutes, we'd have won the game.'
Portsmouth boss Richie Barker told BBC Radio Solent (audio):
"I was pleased with 80% of the performance, we should have won the game, we had the most chances, we were by far the better team in my opinion.
"I'm aware that it's frustrating, it's frustrating for everybody and in an ideal world we'd win the game.
"I thought David [Connolly] was excellent, he did exactly what we asked him to do. He looked bright, he looked sharp. He was influential when he came on. Can we throw him out there week in, week out for 90 minutes? Probably not, but we have to use him for what we can."
Latest | January 2014