Paul Cox video interview on StagsPlayer, 9th September 2014
It's a bit of a worry with Jonah, but I don't want to risk anything by bringing him back too early, and he's not ready for a behind closed doors game yet.
It's a setback but we need to make sure we get him back 100%.
Duo responding well to treatment
mansfieldtown.net, 9th September 2014
Sutton and Bell making progress after sustaining knocks in win at Exeter City.
Manager Paul Cox has confirmed that both Ritchie Sutton and Fergus Bell have responded well to treatment following injuries they sustained in Saturday’s 2-1 win over Exeter City.
The duo both needed to be substituted during the second half of the clash at St James Park. Sutton limped off with hamstring trouble, only a few moments before Bell sustained ankle damage whilst blocking a shot.
“’Sutts’ [Ritchie Sutton] came in for treatment yesterday as did Fergus,” said Cox.
“They seem to have responded to treatment over the last 24 hours, but it’s one of these situations where we’re going to be flipping a coin between now and Saturday to know if they’re going to be fit.”
One player who defied the odds to figure in the win over the Grecians was left-back Rob Taylor.
The ex-Port Vale player, who joined us in the summer, wasn’t expected to figure due to a problem with his immune system, but he came off the bench to complete around 40 minutes.
On Taylor’s fitness, our boss said: “Rob will be back in this morning. Obviously he wasn’t right at the weekend and we gave him yesterday off to try and recover. He’ll see the doctor and we’ll get a better run down on how he is.”
When asked if the latter duo could have late fitness tests, Cox said: “It looks like it. They’re different injuries so it probably means a different period of treatment or rehab, but both of them have responded well over the last 24 hours.”
Two other players to have endured an injury hit start to the campaign are centre-backs Luke Jones and John Dempster.
Jones has been plagued by an ankle problem in recent weeks, whilst Dempster has missed our last two games in Sky Bet League Two due to tendonitis.
“We’d like to have ‘Demps’ [John Dempster] back in training by the end of this week,” added our boss. “’Jonah’ [Luke Jones] is a little bit more complicated, but I’m hoping both of them are very close to at least participating in training.”
Meanwhile, Cox is expected to field a mixture of trialists, youngsters and players who haven’t had much game-time this season in a behind-closed-doors friendly with Worksop Town tonight.
He said: “The game will be used for a number of reasons - to get lads who are a little bit rusty and haven’t played for a while a game and we’ll have a look at one or two lads who are coming in.
“You can run players around tracks or work them hard in training, but it's real match fitness that the players need.”
Paul Cox’s full interview from this morning’s press meeting will be available on Stags Player later today. To subscribe, click here.
Depleted Stags’ race against time
chad.co.uk, 09 September2014
Depleted Mansfield Town, with just 15 fit players today, are on the search for new faces to even make up a basic 16 ahead of two games against top five sides inside four tough days this weekend.
Stags’ early season injury crisis bit harder during Saturday’s fine 2-1 win at Exeter City where they arrived with 17 fit players and then lost Ritchie Sutton and Fergus Bell to injury while Rob Taylor was forced to onto the field to play over half an hour, despite having been ill in bed for 24 hours.
With the loan window now open, also allowing him to bring in free agents, manager Paul Cox will be taking a look at some possibles in a behind-closed-doors friendly with Worksop Town tonight (Tuesday).
Cox also said that he and his staff would be spending much of the week watching players in afternoon and evening kick-offs all over the country.
“We have been working extremely hard over the last couple of weeks, watching games and individuals and that will continue this week,” he said.
“If we are going to bring anyone in, it will probably be later this week as we have a lot of games to cover and they need to be the right bodies.
“What positions they play will depend on cost, but it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to work out we only have two left-footers in the club.
“If I find I can bring in three players for the price of one then I will do that.
“There are some free agents kicking about and we have had a couple in training with us this week with excellent pedigrees similar to Rakish Bingham. But, if we can’t find the right free agent, we can ultimately use the loan market.”
He added: “The game at Worksop will also give players who have not been starting, a chance to play. I can run them round a track and make them work hard, but it’s match fitness they need and they will be called upon this week as we are back to playing Saturday/Tuesday/Saturday.”
Stags travel to fifth-placed Wycombe Wanderers on Saturday before hosting third-placed Morecambe on Tuesday and Cox faces a race against time to get players back.
Ritchie Sutton (tweaked hamstring) and Fergus Bell (ankle strain) are both said to be responding to treatment but will both face late fitness tests, while Rob Taylor was given an extra day off with his illness yesterday and was due in to see the club doctor today if well enough.
Hopes of injured pair John Dempster and Luke Jones playing in tonight’s friendly have been dashed, though Cox is hopeful he might get Dempster back into training before the weekend.
Despite having their early-season critics, Stags are currently 10th with nine points, two points off the play-off spots after six games and Cox added: “We have exactly the same as we had this time last season when people were telling me we’d made a great start, so it’s a strange scenario.
“But I am not getting carried away with anything. It’s all about where we finish at the end of the season. At this football club there seems to be a lot of people who lose their heads. But that’s football and that’s human beings. I have to stay focused.”
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