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Archived News from February 2015

OXFORD PREVIEWS / STAGS HOPING FOR LOAN SIGNING
22nd February 2015 16:42


Adam Murray confirms new information that Mansfield have more than one loan left this season http://www.player.mansfieldtown.net/latest-news/article/4500831/date/20150219153500/page/0/name/video--gaffer-previews-oxford-game

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Stags set to swoop for loan signing
chad.co.uk, by John Lomas, 19 February 2015

Mansfield Town hope to boost their injury-hit squad with a loan signing in time for Saturday’s trip to relegation rivals Oxford United.

http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/mansfield-town/stags-set-to-swoop-for-loan-signing-1-7115213

Manager Adam Murray said this morning: “I am trying to bring in another body to help us out.

“He is a forward option that will give us a but more of a spark up there.

“First and foremost he can create things, open teams up and get fans off their seats. He can take some of the workload off the boys up there.

“Some people may know him, though he’s not a household name like Matty Blair.

“If you watch some footage of him you can see he’s lightning quick and pace is a massive thing to have in your team.

“He is still a young player learning the game, but he has played at a good standard. He will bring a freshness and a real energy to us.”

With Blair out injured and Reggie Lambe struggling the new signing is likely to be a winger.

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Stags hoping their luck has finally turned ahead of Oxford trip
chad.co.uk, by John Lomas, 19 February 2015

Mansfield Town head into Saturday’s relegation six-pointer at Oxford quietly hopeful that their season of wretched luck has taken a turn for the better.

http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/mansfield-town/stags-hoping-their-luck-has-finally-turned-ahead-of-oxford-trip-1-7115839

For once, everything didn’t seem to go against them in Tuesday night’s magnificent 1-0 home win against promotion-chasing Luton Town and Murray said: “I don’t want to tempt fate but you look at some of the little things that happened on Tuesday and you wonder if Lady Luck has finally stepped into our dressing room?

“It would be nice if she has. I think the work we’ve been doing has been right and our work rate has been huge. So it would be nice to start getting that bit of luck you need.”

Saturday’s game is a return to another of his former clubs for Murray and he said the situation at the Kassam Stadium and Stags this season was very similar.

“Oxford are going through a lot of changes, “ he said. “They have brought in a lot of players and continue to do so and have adopted a new style of play since the new manager has been in. They are still finding their feet like we are.

“But they are a huge club with huge backing and I am sure they will eventually get it right.

“I had some good times there. We got promotion and I captained them for a few years. There are some really good people down there.

“This is a huge club for where it’s at and they expect success down there. There is a lot of pressure to get success and the fans deserve it.

“But we are going there to win with a lot of confidence. We have been performing well over a number of weeks but not getting the results we should have.

“I feel Tuesday will kick us on and we can go there and put on a performance and a get a result.”

He added: “It is ridiculous this year. Especially at home against the top teams, we have competed with them and dominated the majority of the games. The ones we’ve lost have been down to ourselves rather than them beating us, usually from dead ball situations.

“It is a strange league and I know it will go to the wire at both ends this year.

“On Tuesday the overwhelming feeling was relief. The boys have seen reward for all their work. That needed to happen eventually as there is only so long you can keep banging doors down in life and see no reward. You become disheartened.”

Amazingly, apart from being a single goal worse off, Stags’ current record is exactly the same as it was this time last season - on half the budget!

Murray smiled: “It is a crazy statistic when you consider we haven’t had the beauty of the resources we had last year and we’ve had to work a bit more efficiently with what we’ve got. Maybe everything isn’t as bad as it seems.

“It is brilliant having a smaller squad. You do struggle a bit when you get a couple of injuries, but the bonus is the togetherness and unity you get.

“We have set targets and this year that is staying in the League.”

Thankfully Reggie Lambe’s tight hanstring may not keep him out long after he limped off on Tuesday.

“It’s not as bad as we first thought and he will have treatment today,” said Murray.

“Some of it is down to fatigue. Playing Saturday, Tuesday, Saturday, Tuesday takes it out of you, especially the dynamic lads doing a lot of sprint work within games.”

Murray is hoping to bring in another loan signing into his injury-hit squad before the game.

Oxford today completed the signing of midfielder Giorgio Rasulo from MK Dons on loan until the end of the season.

The 18-year-old England U17 international comes from Banbury and joined MK Dons as a 13-year-old, progressing through the ranks and making his full debut in the FA Cup earlier in the season.

Comfortable on the ball, Giorgio joins George Baldock on loan from the Dons and goes straight into the squad on Saturday.

Oxford have won just once in their eight games since the turn of the year and have lost the last two on the bounce without scoring.

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Jack Thomas needs time and patience, says Stags boss Adam Murray
chad.co.uk, by John Lomas

Mansfield Town manager Adam Murray has warned supporters that teenage midfield ace Jack Thomas is not yet the finished product and to be patient with him and the club’s efforts to bring him along.

http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/mansfield-town/jack-thomas-needs-time-and-patience-says-stags-boss-adam-murray-1-7116046?utm_medium=twitter&utm_source=twitterfeed

The 18-year-old has returned from his first proper spell in ‘men’s football’ with a loan spell at Hednesford in the Conference North to play his first two full games for the Stags, winning man of the match in both for two dominant displays.

However, Murray warned: “We have got to be realistic. He has come in and is bouncing on adrenalin. That won’t continue. He will take a dip in performance at some point.

“It is up to the staff, myself and the supporters to manage it.

“He will be a great player, I have no doubts about that. But you can’t expect 10 out of 10 every week. He is a baby and we need to keep him under wraps. He never says a lot - he is a silent assassin!

“Jack has a bright future at the club as do some of the other lads coming through. We have three or four waiting in the wings and when the time is right we will see them.

“I wasn’t forced into playing Jack. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for a long time. I was trying to push him in last season.

“As a manager you have to take risks sometimes and just have to say go for it. Jack was a calculated risk.

“When we sent him to Hednesford, we told him he wasn’t being forced out here. We wanted him to spend a couple of months getting some proper football and getting beaten up.

“I joked with him that he would come back and run the show for me then we’d sell him for a million pounds. He can get us promotion first, though.”

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Oliver believes Stags' fortunes are turning
mansfieldtown.net, 19th February 2015

Sharp-shooter in buoyant mood ahead of Oxford match

Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/striker-happy-with-improvement-in-side-ahead-of-trip-to-oxford-united-2281946.aspx#RYCgWOM7d8B7LkXd.99

Mansfield Town’s top scorer Vadaine Oliver believes the Stags may have turned a positive corner after our impressive victory over Luton Town in mid-week.

Having scored six goals in 16 league appearances, Oliver was full of praise for his team mates as they showed great character to overcome John Still's high-fliers to acquire all three points.

“It was a huge three points for us, epecially after last Saturday [against Northampton] when we ran the game and it got taken away from us at the death," said Oliver.

“To bounce back and put in a great performance was massive for us,” he added.

After an inconsistent period of results over the past few weeks, the striker admitted: “Two or three weeks ago it wasn’t errors by the team or being opened up by anyone, it was just some individual things. Set pieces were killing us. We have been working hard to eradicate that from our game.

“We looked strong defensively on Tuesday night.”

The Stags have had a busy run of fixtures recently and the 23-year old admitted that it has been a challenge: “There have been a lot of games and it has taken a lot out of the boys, including myself. We have stuck together as a group and we’re showing on the pitch that we are together. We’re not winning every game we should be, but we are putting in good performances and now we can go on, get the points and move up the table.”

Commenting on his own feats in front of goal this season, Oliver said: “I want to keep up my goal scoring ratio and get into double figures. For me, the personal accolade of getting on the scoresheet is great, but I want to win and getting the three points is massive.

“The best strikers not only score goals but also provide goals. For me, that is what I want to achieve. I have good players around me and want to get them goals too.

“The main things about coming here and get back to playing again and enjoying my football. Adam Murray has given me a new lease on life. It’s given me the confidence in my ability again and the trust he has given to me has been massive.”

As the team prepares for the trip south to play Oxford United on Saturday, Oliver recognised the continued importance of picking up points against teams in a similar position: “We have performed excellent recently, but this next run of games is against teams around our area [in the table]. I think we just need to keep performing how we have been.”

To hear more from Vadaine Oliver head to Stags Player.

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Vadaine Oliver hoping Luton win is turning point for Stags’ season
chad.co.uk, by John Lomas

Vadaine Oliver is hoping Tuesday night’s thrilling 1-0 win over high-flying Luton Town can be the turning point in Mansfield Town’s season of struggle.

http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/mansfield-town/vadaine-oliver-hoping-luton-win-is-turning-point-for-stags-season-1-7116027?utm_medium=twitter&utm_source=twitterfeed

As the Stags prepared to face fellow strugglers Oxford United away tomorrow, the on-loan Crewe striker said: “That was a huge three points for us.

“After Saturday when we ran the game only to have it taken away from us right at the death, to bounce back with another great performance and get the result was massive for us. It’s put us five points clear now.

“We have had a hell of a lot of games and it has taken it out of a lot of the boys, myself included as I am quite tired.

“But we have stuck together and shown that togetherness on the pitch. We have not been winning every game but we have put in some great performances.

“This is the turning point for us now and we can go on and get a few points and move up the table.

“Two or three weeks ago we were making defensive errors, not as a team, just individual things. Set pieces were killing us massively. But we now look stronger defensively. On Tuesday the boys did really well at the back and we need to keep that going.

“This next run of games is even bigger as we are playing teams around us who are also struggling. We need to continue the performances we have been producing and get more results.”

Oliver felt the arrival of experienced loanee keeper Lenny Pidgeley had been a huge factor in the club’s upturn in fortunes.

Said Oliver: “He has made a massive difference, no disrespect to the other keepers, who are youngsters. Lenny is experienced and a big presence. He is a massive guy who commands his back four.”

Oliver’s goal in the 1-1 draw with Northampton last weekend took him to six in 16 games for the Stags, and he said: “I would like to keep that ratio going and get into double figures, but we need to keep getting the results. I get personal accolades when I get on the scoresheet which is good for me.

“But there are games like Tuesday when I have to be selfless. I didn’t get any chances but the three points were huge.

“I don’t mind playing as part of a two or a three or playing up there on my own. I can adapt. I wasn’t getting any chances on Tuesday but I was holding the ball up.”

Oliver is clearly enjoying regular football on his loan spell, saying: “The main thing I came here for was to enjoy my football and get back to playing again. That has happened, especially under Adam Murray, and it’s been a new lease of life for me.

“He has given me confidence in my ability again and putting his trust in me has been massive.

“Crewe doing well has been a good thing for me. It has enabled me to stay here and that’s perfect for me.”

He also believes he is the only Vadaine in the game right now!

“I think I am the only Vadaine in English football,” he said. “I believe it’s French but I am not too sure. I would have to research it.”

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Oxford United’s Johnny Mullins hopes to avoid a repeat of relegation heartache with Mansfield Town
chad.co.uk, by Stephen Thirkill, 19/02/2015
Oxford United defender Johnny Mullins says he does not want to suffer a repeat of the relegation heartache he suffered with Mansfield Town.

http://www.chad.co.uk/sport/mansfield-town/oxford-united-s-johnny-mullins-hopes-to-avoid-a-repeat-of-relegation-heartache-with-mansfield-town-1-7114443

Mullins was part of Stags side relegated from the Football League in 2008 and is currently battling hard to keep his current club in League Two.

Struggling Oxford, who were beaten 2-0 by Burton in their last game, have won just two in 10 and sit four points above the drop zone.

But Mullins, who was voted Stags player of the year in 2008, believes Oxford are more than good enough to stay up.

“Getting relegated is an awful feeling, I remember it well at Mansfield and I don’t want that to happen again,” he said.

“Confidece is still good in the camp, we are not playing badly, we just need to get some results and points together.

“We have not been able to go on a run of five or six unbeaten for a long time and that is what we need to do.

“We have got 15 games left now and it is that cliche of taking one game at a time.

“We have set ourselves points targets for each game and we know we are good enough to get the points we need.

“But it’s no good talking about things, we need to go out there and get the results.

And Mullins, who played 83 times for Mansfield, knows that a win against his former employers can act as a much-needed springboard to safety.

“The result was not what we wanted against Burton and it is important we go out on Saturday and get the three points,” he said.

“That is not going to be easy against a team that have had a good result in midweek.

“Things are very tight at the bottom and two wins can make things very different. We are looking upwards and staying positive.

“Football is often decided by fine margins and our result could have been very different against Burton if we had managed to get the first goal.

“It is important that we do that on Saturday and shape the game in our favour.

“I enjoyed my time at Mansfield, it is a good football club with good people and I am glad to see them back in the Football League where they belong. I hope that we can both stay up this season.”

Mansfeld beat Oxford earlier this season 2-1 at Field Mill as they look to complete a league double.

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Stand Up and Be Counted
oufc.co.uk, 19th February 2015

Michael Appleton gets set for Mansfield at home

Read more at http://www.oufc.co.uk/news/article/oxford-united-mansfield-town-2282081.aspx#sWDc7gj7AHJi0k87.99

Oxford United Head Coach Michael Appleton sends his side out against Mansfield Town looking to get a vital win as the U’s go into the last fifteen games of the season.

“There are 45 points to play for and we know the job we need to do” Michael told Yellow Player earlier. “The players have started really well this week in terms of training and preparing for Mansfield on Saturday. I think we have the players here for this sort of challenge. I think they thrive under a certain amount of pressure and there is enough experience in the group to deal with it, plus we have enough quality with the younger players as well. We are aware it is going to be tough but we accept where we are. What has happened before is irrelevant, it is what happens going forward.

“We have the opportunity against the sides around us in the table and I think that’s going to be important. Mansfield will be fired up and a crucial win against Luton will have given them a lift so we have to be aware of that. But in this part of the season the focus has to be on what we have to do, not the opposition. There is a real focus among this group of players this week. We sat down on Monday and talked about what we need to do going forwards and I think we have done that very positively this week.

“I think there have been crucial periods through the season where the players have had to stand up and be counted, and they know they are going to have to do that again on Saturday and for the next fifteen games.”

See the full interview plus the thoughts of skipper Jake Wright and new arrival Giorgio Rasulo in Yellow Player right now.

Get behind the U's on Saturday. Call 01865 337533 or visit http://www.oufctickets.co.uk to book your seat

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Latest | February 2015