COX CALLS FOR QUICK DECISION ON CLUCAS
Cox calls for quick decision as Spirites home in on Clucas
chad.co.uk, 26 August 2014
Bitter local rivals Chesterfield look to be homing in on Mansfield Town’s star winger Sam Clucas - and manager Paul Cox has called for a quick decision on the 23-year-old’s future.
The League One club have been in touch with the Stags for almost four weeks now and this week finally began to talk money.
Other clubs have also enquired about signing Clucas before Monday’s transfer window deadline, but only the Spireites look likely to follow it up with an actual bid.
“Talks are ongoing but I want to get this nipped in the bud one way or another as soon as possible this week - hopefully in the next 24 hours,” said Cox.
“It’s not doing Mansfield Town, Chesterfield or, more importantly, the player any good with all this speculation. I want to know as quickly as possible if he is going to be a Mansfield Town player.
“Money has now been talked about but nothing agreed and it’s all up in the air.
“I want to plan for Saturday’s game with Burton knowing if Sam will be here or at another club.
“I have told the lad why he’s not been involved in the last couple of games as he could be moving on and I can’t pick a side with someone in it who could be gone within 24 hours.”
Cox added: “Someone like Sam is always going to get a lot of enquiries, it’s only when you get down to the nitty gritty of finance you find out how serious clubs are.
“I understand the situation. We all have to cut our cloth accordingly and every player has his price. That’s football. Also, Sam is a free agent at the end of the season. I am sure the chairman and the board will make the decision in the best interests of the club.
“I just need to plan for the rest of the season and, if Sam moves on, look at other avenues. I can’t afford to lose any more players with our threadbare squad and Sam will be very hard to replace.
“If Sam does move on then that will be the conversation I will have with the chairman and see where that leads.”
Stags will look to bounce back from Saturday’s 2-0 defeat at Dagenham & Redbridge when unbeaten Burton Albion visit One Call Stadium on Saturday before a Johnstone’s Paint Trophy Northern Section first round derby at Notts County on Tuesday.
“I thought we were a yard off the pace in all three sections at Dagenham on Saturday though I don’t think there was anything in the game,” said Cox.
“We probably missed a couple of good chances to score before they went ahead. Then we were chasing the game away from home and left ourselves open to the counter.
“Burton and Notts are two very good games for us. I don;t think we’ve made a bad start to the season and I think some players are still acclimatising to League Two. But we are down to the bare bones numbers-wise and carrying injuries.”
Clucas Nearing Stags Exit
Ex-Bull Sam Clucas is nearing the exit door at Mansfield - but a big money transfer is unlikely at present.
Despite a string of high profile suitors - including Nottm Forest - it appears that League One Chesterfield are in pole position, with Stags manager Paul Cox admitting they are showing the most interest:
"We haven't had a firm bid, but there has been talk about money - and that's really as far as it's gone so far. We've had enquiries from a number of clubs, but Chesterfield have been the only one who have been serious.
"I think either things will develop quickly or they won't happen at all."
Clucas was Cox's top scorer last season with 13 goals, but has started only one game this season with his future up in the air. With the fact that Clucas turns 24 in a month and is out of contract at the end of the season, Cox added:
"I always want to keep my best players, but I also understand football and what the game is about, as does the chairman. I think he and the board know Sam's valuation and they are aware that will be affected by the fact he is out of contract and a free agent at the end of the season."
Hereford United hold a 15% share of any profit the Stags make on the £20,000 paid so far.
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