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17th March 2018 0:40

Gaffer provides injury update
mansfieldtown.net, Mon 12 Mar 2018

Mansfield Town manager David Flitcroft says it’s too early to decide whether defender Zander Diamond and midfielder Jacob Mellis will be fit for our upcoming local derby against Notts County after the duo sustained injuries in Saturday's draw with Colchester United.

Winger Alfie Potter returned to training this morning after missing Stags’ last two games with a hamstring injury, however skipper Diamond and artful midfielder Mellis picked up knocks in Saturday’s 1-1 draw at home to the U's.

And the manager has admitted that it’s too early to say whether the duo will be available for Saturday’s local derby against Notts County at Meadow Lane, but hopes to have wideman Potter in training for the rest of the week.

“It’s too soon. There’s been a slight twinge in [Zander Diamond’s] hamstring. He’s being assessed today but we’ll wait until probably Wednesday/Thursday to really commit to that. With it being Monday, it’s too early to comment on that,” the Stags’ chief said.


“Jacob’s ankle’s come up. It was a nasty knock he took. The medical staff are saying really he’s done more damage by staying on it and staying on the pitch. I think his adrenaline got him through it.

“There were a couple of times when he went down and him possibly staying on the pitch might have just added to the swelling and the bleeding in that area.

“He’s had the Game Ready on (an injury recovery aide), he’s had the ice, he’s had the compression and we have got some swelling out of it. It’s another injury that time will time will take the ultimate decision.

“Alfie’s trained with us today. He did all his finals last week and did all his end-stage rehab. The medical staff have done great with him so Alfie’s trained today and hopefully we’ll have him for the rest of the week.”

In terms of long-term absentees, centre-half David Mirfin has been out of action since the Checkatrade Trophy defeat to Blackpool at the beginning of December.

And although the former Scunthorpe United man is unlikely to feature in the near future, the boss has re-integrated the 32-year-old into the squad to keep his mental wellbeing high.

“I’ve brought him back into the squad and mixing with the players and having lunch with the players. [We’re] making sure he’s watching the games. He’s got fantastic experience.

“We want the players to get around him and it’s important that he feels part of what we’re doing because there’s no worse place as a player. You want to play games, all players do, and it’s important the supporters understand that.

“I always say to players that are injured: ‘sit up there and don’t get bored with it. Don’t just think you’re watching it; try and study. Try and study the way the team move around the pitch, what centre-forwards’ movement is and good defensive play.’

“I’ve got Mirf doing that and I’ll speak to him every Monday to see his take on it because he’s got fantastic vast experience of being successful.”

Stags have sold over 4,000 tickets for Saturday’s local derby against Notts County and the manager has dubbed the following ‘incredible’ for the match which will pit third against fifth in Sky Bet League Two.

“That’s quite incredible. We were looking at 4,000 fans the other day at a home game and then we’ve got 4,000 fans that are watching us at a local derby, I think it’s incredible.

“We’ve got to go and make sure we represent. The home fans have energised me here. We’ve not given them the points that we want to give them yet, but it’s a case of going to Notts County and really trying to drive that forwards.

“The supporters here have backed them all season and that’s been a feature of the results we’ve had.”

Supporters can login to iFollow Stags to view the manager’s full news conference.


Time to take more risks says Stags manager
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS

Mansfield Town must go for the jugular and take more risks as the season builds to a thrilling climax. That is the view of new boss David Flitcroft who has seen his players twice draw games after leading through trying to defend a single goal advantage instead of going for a second. “We had a good morning with the players today, showing them the improvements we’re going to make and work on. I want to get the team high up the pitch,” he said. “Once you go in the lead, it’s a real advantage to go looking for that second instead of sitting in and hoping you might get a win. “It is sometimes a natural reaction to take what you’ve got and you feel safe in doing that. “But we now have to have a risk strategy to go and cement three points. We need to show more of an appetite to kill teams off. “The further we can get up the pitch, we’ll create more chances. Then we might put a team to bed or to the sword.” Flitcroft has been frustrated to see too many long balls being pumped up to the forwards. “It’s about quality work,” he said. “I felt at times we were just punting the ball up to Danny Rose. “That’s probably been a trend of some of the work this season. It’s almost a go-to ball. “We’ve got to make better calculations on the pitch. We have got to have more precise in our work and have more respect in our work. “If we can retain the ball at the top of pitch more we can start adding the numbers, flooding it and suffocating teams at home. “With the energy from the fans, they want that and they deserve that. “This could be a really intimidating place if we get that balance right. Eight draws at home this season is too many. “It’s my job now to put wins on the board at home and away.”

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/time-to-take-more-risks-says-stags-manager-1-9062309


Flitcroft keeps Stags focused as derby day build-up intensifies
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS

New Mansfield Town manager David Flitcroft has stressed to his players not to get distracted by the huge importance of Saturday’s six-pointer local derby at Notts County (1pm). Stags trail Notts, who sit in the third and final automatic promotion spot, by three points with a game in hand and only 10 games left. Some fans believe it’s Mansfield’s most important game since gaining promotion from the Conference. However, Flitcroft is keen to avoid the hype and keep his players focused. “Yes, it’s important, but there are still 27 points to go afterwards,” he said. “When you start dealing with stats and figures you can let that cloud and confuse your judgement. “This is a game that is massively important for both teams. It’s about how you keep your focus and mental approach right. “If you start looking too far ahead of that you can lose focus. “That’s why you see in so many local derbies a lot of contention and a lot of discipline problems. “We’ve said to the players all week it’s really important how we represent the town and the supporters. “It is turbo-charged. It is emotional and you’ve got to take away that emotional factor and be in total control of everything you do.” He continued: “There is always a build-up. You can almost become a fan for that day and that’s what you’ve got to be careful you don’t do. You must not get drawn into that background noise. “It’s really important we focus on the right team selection, the right substitutes, the right squad to take. “You can’t get side-swiped by the attention, people wanting tickets, and the extra energy surrounding it. You have to be focused on what you do.” Flitcroft is keen his players avoid getting dragged into anything on the day that could see the referee’s cards produced. “We must stick to our game plan and the focus of keeping a real discipline. We must make sure we don’t get involved in the occasion,” he said. “Whatever team I put out or position you play, you must stick to your task as an individual and as part of a team. “Staff, management and players must all stick to their task as in a hotbed arena like that. “As we saw against Lincoln, you can be on that yellow card and it can soon transcend into chaos. Referees get edgy in these games. “We must make sure we concentrate on what we are in control of and committing to that.”

Read more at: https://www.hucknalldispatch.co.uk/sport/football/flitcroft-keeps-stags-focused-as-derby-day-build-up-intensifies-1-9062316


Derby day tickets sold out as ‘incredible’ Stags army heads for Meadow Lane
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS

Mansfield Town manager David Flitcroft described the club’s 4,172 travelling army of fans for Saturday’s local derby at Notts County as ‘quite incredible’. The Stags take on their neighbours in a real six-pointer with both sides chasing the top three automatic promotion places and Stags today sold their final 50 tickets for the game. Flitcroft said: “That is quite incredible, looking at 4,000 fans here at the home game the other day and then to know we’ve got 4,000 fans that are coming to watch us in the local derby. “The noise our home fans make is fantastic. So, having that many fans away from home, we’ve got to give them something to really get behind. “We have to go and make sure we represent. “I have to be honest, the home fans have energised me -they really have. And we’ve not yet given them the points that I want to give them. So it’s a case of going to Notts County and trying to drive that forward.”

Read more at: https://www.hucknalldispatch.co.uk/sport/football/derby-day-tickets-sold-out-as-incredible-stags-army-heads-for-meadow-lane-1-9063558


Stags delay decisions on injured duo for derby clash
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS

Stags are waiting on the fitness of skipper Zander Diamond and midfielder Jacob Mellis ahead of this weekend’s big derby at Notts County. “It’s too soon to say about Zander yet,” said boss David Flitcroft. “He’s had a slight twinge in his hamstring which is being assessed. “We’ll wait until Wednesday or Thursday to really commit to it. “Jacob’s ankle has come up. It was a nasty whack he took. “The medical staff are saying he’s probably done more damage by staying on the pitch. I think his adrenalin got him through it.” He added: “There was a couple of times when Jacob went down and staying on the pitch might possibly have added to the swelling and bleeding in that area. “He’s had the ice and compression on and we’ve had some of the swelling out of it. It’s another injury which will see time take the ultimate decision.”

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/stags-delay-decisions-on-injured-duo-for-derby-clash-1-9062305


Miller must wait as Angol impresses new Stags boss
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS

David Flitcroft believes he can mould young striker Lee Angol into something special. And Angol is ahead of Peterborough loanee Ricky Miller in the pecking order at the moment for the new Stags manager. Some fans have been wondering why Miller has not been in the 18 for either game under Flitcroft so far.

But the manager said: “As a coach and a mentor I see in Lee Angol someone I really think I can develop at this club. “He has the size, his physical stats are decent, his running stats are good when he plays, and the kid needs teaching. “So I want to put a lot of time into Lee. We’ve also got Spence (Jimmy Spencer), who is another striker.

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/miller-must-wait-as-angol-impresses-new-stags-boss-1-9060260

“You look at the balance of the squad and I pick the subs based on where they might be needed in the game so we have always got defensive cover, midfield options, and the strikers to make an impact.

“At the minute Ricky has not been part of that. Every player knows that when I make a decision, it will purely based on a football reason and at the minute Ricky has not made enough impact on me.”


No surprises as Flitcroft crosses swords with Notts for third time this season
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS

After two games against them already this season, Kevin Nolan’s Notts County will hold no surprises for new Mansfield Town boss David Flitcroft on Saturday. Flitcroft has already played Notts twice while manager at Swindon this season, winning and losing 1-0 and said: “We had a narrow defeat at Notts and then beat them at home. “They play a certain way and do things how Kev (pictured, inset) likes to play and we’ve got to combat that. “We must make sure on the day we turn their strengths into weaknesses and that we are stronger in what we do. “Notts can be quite an intimidating place. “They have made it a fortress and we have to try to take ownership ourselves, which can only come through the performance of the players and the energy they show which will cascade onto our fans.” Flitcroft continued: “Notts have had a good season. Kevin has had that momentum from last season. “He went in there just after Christmas time and built momentum. Obviously the owners backed him. “Kevin is a great football man, but we have to concentrate on our game. “They are up there for a reason. If you are in the top three over the course of a season then you’re doing something right. “We have to understand that. But since I came in here from day one we’ve been concentrating on Mansfield Town and what we can do to improve and how we can get better. We are certainly seeing small signs of that.” Last weekend a late Matt Tootle goal earned the Magpies a 2-1 win at in-form Forest Green. Their only defeat in their last six games was a 1-0 reversal at Cambridge United. After losing at home to Crawley and Exeter in January, Notts have since taken maximum points from their last three games at Meadow Lane. Forest loanee Jorge Grant remains their top scorer with 18 goals while Jon Stead has 13. The winners on Saturday will also land the Matt Salmon Trophy. The trophy is now competed for every time the sides clash in memory of the young physio who worked at both clubs and died last year, Stags having won the inaugural contest earlier this season.

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/no-surprises-as-flitcroft-crosses-swords-with-notts-for-third-time-this-season-1-9063624


Injured Stags defender is extra eyes in the stand
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS

David Flitcroft is making use of injured defender David Mirfin’s vast experience as an extra pair of eyes high up in the stands. The Stags manager is keen to keep Mirfin involved as he recovers from his knee injury and said: “It’s been tough for David. “When any player is out with a long term injury, it’s very important to get the mental well-being of the player right. “I have brought him back into the squad, mixing with the players, having lunch with them, and making sure he is watching the games. “He’s got fantastic experience. I want the players to get round him. It’s important he feels part of what we do. All players want to play games. No players like being injured. It’s the worst place to be as a player.” He added: “Watching football on a Saturday is hard. I was out myself as a young player for 18 months with three different, consecutive injuries. “To be honest I think that is why I do what I do now as I found a way of enjoying studying the game from a higher vantage point. “I always say to players who are injured - sit up there and don’t get bored. Try to study the way the team moves around the pitch. “I have got Mirf doing that and I will speak to him every Monday to see what his take on it was as I say he has fantastic past experience of being successful.”

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/injured-stags-defender-is-extra-eyes-in-the-stand-1-9063608