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FLITCROFT PREVIEWS NORTHAMPTON
4th October 2018 19:09


We'll work on landing 'knockout blow,' says Stags' boss
mansfieldtown.net, Tuesday 25 September 2018

David Flitcroft’s men are determined to work on landing a killer blow in training this week, the manager said at a news conference this morning.

The Stags face Northampton Town at One Call Stadium this weekend, following a 1-1 draw against Cambridge United at the Abbey Stadium, a game in which Mansfield conceded late on courtesy of George Maris’ deflected effort.

Ahead of this Saturday’s match, the manager says he is looking for ‘potency’ in attack, something that the players are eager to work for in the days leading up to the game.

“On Saturday, not getting those two points, and the difference that it makes, we’ve flushed that out yesterday,” said the Stags’ boss. “We made sure that we targeted everything that we needed to get right.

“We’ve been really good at home. We really try and hurt teams more than we have done. We’ve relayed to the players that they [Northampton] are coming onto our patch, [so] let’s get this stadium rocking.

https://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/2018/september/flitcroft-pre-northampton/

“When we do go a goal in front [we have to] go and get that second. We have to be accountable in that moment. We’re just failing on that last bit. When we get that right, we’re going to be a real force. There’s a real strong belief I have about that.

“Now we’ve got the Cambridge point out of the way, there’s been an energy and a want from the players this week to get back on the grass and start putting more potency into that attack.

“You look at that we’ve conceded seven goals this season and it’s up there with the best records in the league. But the goals tally isn’t where I want it to be. That’s what we have to make better and what we’ll be driving this squad to do.

“We’re trying to play with an intent. Because we’ve changed the style of play, we’ve almost been looking for that perfect goal. Well, a perfect goal is the one that goes in. The perfect goal is the one that wins the game.

“We’ve maybe been a bit too intricate. We’ve looked at our work so far, and can we improve that? Absolutely. Do we need to? Absolutely.

“I want to give our fans a team that can play in the right way, but can win in the right way. That’s something that we’ve really driven into this group of players this week.

“We’ve got a lot right this season. It’s a shift in mindset. We want to see the knockout blow, not a few jabs. It’s [about] going for that killer punch.”

The manager also gave injury updates on striker Craig Davies and defender Hayden White, who both were absent for the 1-1 draw against Cambridge.

“With Craig [Davies], we left him behind at the weekend,” added Flitcroft. “He did sessions over the weekend. He’s not far off and will join in with us today for probably 75% of the session.

“He’s done a lot of field-based work. So he will train with us today and then we will assess that situation and see what work he needs to do tomorrow. I’m really hopeful of having Davo back in the squad [this weekend].

“Hayden [White] has gone over on his ankle. So we’re looking at the strain and the severity of that strain.

“The scan is down in London as we speak, so we’ll be more up-to-date hopefully by four o’clock today. That’s when we should get an update from the scan. It had settled down quite a bit and we thought we might have him in and around it [squad], but it’s one of them.

“With an ankle injury you have the initial impact, then it takes a little bit of time. We’ll assess it and see where he’s at come end of play today.”

Ahead of Mansfield’s next contest in Sky Bet League Two, the Stags’ boss profiled the threats that Northampton pose, and what he requires from his players for a positive result.

“They [Northampton] are a team full of experience. They’re probably not where they want to be in the table right now, but they’ll be a dangerous opponent. We saw that with Cambridge on Saturday.

“They have players who can hurt you. They’re going to be an opponent that want to get their season right on track. I think that’s where a lot of teams are coming up to that ten game mark.

“We have to really focus on what we’ve done well at One Call Stadium and make that better.

“Away from home if we go unbeaten until the end of the season then we’re going to be delighted, but only if that is backed up by comprehensive wins at home. We’ve nearly had that. We have to turn that nearly into a definitive.

“When we have gone a goal up at home, the decibels go up and the support we’ve had in the stadium has been phenomenal. Now it’s a case of making sure we step on the gas at that point.

“[We have to] play with that risk and play with that determination to go and get that next goal. We’ve not been ruthless enough. [We need] almost a no fear approach. Bravery and character in those key moments is something. We only have ten goals, and it’s not enough.”

iFollow Stags subscribers can watch the manager’s interview in full by logging into mansfieldtown.net/ifollow later today.

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Mansfield Town boss demands more goals and a ruthless attitude
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Tuesday 25 September 2018

Mansfield Town boss David Flitcroft is demanding more goals and a more ruthless attitude to killing off opponents when ahead. That follows two more dropped points due to a late equaliser in Saturday’s 1-1 draw at Cambridge ahead of two crucial home games in four days, starting with Saturday’s visit of relegated Northampton Town before Oldham Athletic provide the opposition on Tuesday. Stags are still unbeaten away from home and have only conceded seven goals in their eight games, but now sit 16th in League Two.

“We have got a lot right attacking-wise this season,” said Flitcroft. “But the issue is the mental approach - that accountability and that responsibility to think this is my opportunity to go and hurt these opponents.

Read more at: https://www.hucknalldispatch.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town-boss-demands-more-goals-and-a-ruthless-attitude-1-9366206

“We have been good on our home patch this season. But when we do go a goal in front then we need to go and get that second. “We are just failing on that last bit and when we get that right we will be a real force. “At home we have dismantled teams, we have disjointed them and we have dominated them for large periods.” He added: “We have only conceded seven goals this season - that’s up there with the best records in the league. “But the goals tally isn’t where I want it to be for the amount of good quality entrances we’ve made into the last third. It’s poor and we have got to make it better - that’s what we will driving this squad to do this weekend. “As we’ve changed the style of play we have almost been looking for that perfect goal. But a perfect goal is one that goes in or wins the game. Any match-winning goal is a perfect goal for me.” Flitcroft said much of it was down to poor decision-making. “Have we turned down shots? Yes we possibly have. We have certainly turned down crossing opportunities and passing opportunities in that last third and maybe been a bit too intricate. “We remain dominant in our play but need better decisions, better executions and an almost no fear approach to taking that shot or cross on,” he said. “It’s about bravery and character in those key moments as we have only scored 10 goals and it’s not enough with the quality of players we’ve got. In a promotion campaign, we should have between 15 and 20. “It’s a mentality shift from at times being happy with 1-0 and holding onto it and to then absolutely going to get the next one. “You have to play with that risk and determination to go and see a team, off. We have not been ruthless enough this season. “When we’ve gone ahead here the decibels have always gone up and the stadium has been phenomenal. “Now it’s a case of us not just seeing it through, but stepping on the gas at that point.” Despite having a game in hand and only losing once, Flitcroft said his side’s current position in the table was where they deserved to be. “A promotion campaign is built off a solid foundation and consistency,” he admitted. “It doesn’t matter what football you’re playing to the outside world. It matter where you stand in the table. “We are in control of that with how we play. “We are in 16th place because we’ve not done enough going forward to really hurt teams.” He continued: “Our football has to be a winning brand and one that puts the fear of God into teams when they come to the One Call. They need to know they will be in for one hell of a game. “We have got that game in hand, which lost us a bit of traction, but we are where we are. “I want to see us top of the table. Do I believe we can get there? A million per cent. “If we go all season unbeaten away from home but back that up with positive at home it will be a successful season, the two things go hand in hand. We need to find that consistency.”

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Can Joshua win help inspire Mansfield Town to find a knockout punch?
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Tuesday 25 September 2018

Mansfield Town’s players can take inspiration from the way British heavyweight boxing star Anthony Joshua achieved his latest victory believes manager David Flitcroft. Joshua stormed to a seventh round knockout of Russian Alexander Povetkin to retain his WBA, IBF, WBO and IBO world heavyweight championship belts at Wembley Stadium.

“You look at AJ on Saturday. He teased him up for four or five rounds and it was a really good battle,” said Flitcroft.

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/can-joshua-win-help-inspire-mansfield-town-to-find-a-knockout-punch-1-9366201

“But when he saw an opportunity to really see him off, he just did it in an emphatic way. SHORT BREAKS TO EUROPE Book a hotel break or return fare to France or Belgium now, from just £45, return. Promoted by Sponsored by DFDS “I saw a real ambition from a fighter to be really ruthless at the right time. “You can learn from everything that’s out there. “Belief will only come from winning matches. That’s what our fans want. We are under no illusions about that and this staff will work night and day to deliver on that.” He added: “The problem this season has been not finishing teams off and going for that jugular. “Don’t settle for 1-0. Make a game 2-0, give them no hope and nothing to fight for. You know what that second goal does to the opposition - it hurts them. “It’s not a jab, it’s a knockout blow - a killer punch. That’s what we are working on this week.”

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Anderson plays as young Stags lose at Morecambe
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Tuesday 25 September 2018

A youthful Mansfield Town reserves side lost 3-2 at Morecambe in Central League action this afternoon. Forward Iyrwah Gooden scored twice in the second half against a Shrimps team featuring a few senior players. For Mansfield 16-year-old Jordan Armsden made his reserves debut at centre-back and had a solid performance while transfer-listed ‘forgotten man’ Paul Anderson also played for 80 minutes in his bid to try to get back into the first team picture after the club’s failure to offload him before the transfer deadline.

Boss David Flitcroft said: “Coops (coach Richard Cooper) will let us know how he Paul got on. We are still looking how he is training and seeing if the indicators are good.”

Read more at: https://www.hucknalldispatch.co.uk/sport/football/anderson-plays-as-young-stags-lose-at-morecambe-1-9366488

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Can Mansfield Town strike before Cobblers find their League Two feet?
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Tuesday 25 September 2018

Mansfield Town boss David Flitcroft believes relegated Northampton Town could become a force once they find their feet in League Two after a disappointing start. Saturday’s visitors to the One Call Stadium have not won in their last four League Two outings and only once in all nine games so far.

Flitcroft said: “You look at last season when Port Vale hurtled down the league and Chesterfield went out the league, sometimes it’s hard finding your feet.

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/can-mansfield-town-strike-before-cobblers-find-their-league-two-feet-1-9368030

“It is a very robust League Two - a very direct league. Join WWF Now To Help Protect Our Planet From plastic in our oceans to the killing of elephants for their tusks. In so many ways our planet is suffering but together we can make a difference Promoted by WWF “There is a lot more football played in League One and it can be difficult sometimes to acclimatise and adjust. “But Northampton have a lot of good players and when they settle and understand the environment they are in they will pick up their form. “They are a team full of very good experience right through the heart of the side.” He added: “They are not where they want to be in the table right now, but they will be dangerous opponents. “Like Cambridge last Saturday they are a team with absolutely everything to fight for. “Northampton have players who can hurt you and are opponents who want to get their season on track - as are a lot of teams coming up to that 10 game mark. “We have done work on Northampton and where we can affect their weaknesses, but we really need to focus on what we have been good at at the One Call and improving on that.” Flitcroft chose not to send any first team squad members to Morecambe for yesterday’s 3-2 reserves defeat as he plotted how to get his own side’s season firmly on track with too many games drawn that Stags should have won. “We didn’t send many of the boys over to that as we have some important sessions,” he said. “It’s important that, come Saturday, everyone knows what is expected of them.”

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Davies hoping on Mansfield Town return, but Stags waiting on White scan
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Tuesday 25 September 2018

Mansfield Town are hoping to have striker Craig Davies back in the squad to face Northampton Town this weekend after his hamstring strain. But the Stags are awaiting on the results of a scan on Hayden White’s ankle ligaments after improvements in his injury took a turn for the worse.

“Craig is nearer than Hayden,” said boss David Flitcroft “We left Craig behind at the weekend and he did some sessions. He is not far off and he will join in with us today on grass.

Read more at: https://www.hucknalldispatch.co.uk/sport/football/davies-hoping-on-mansfield-town-return-but-stags-waiting-on-white-scan-1-9367327

“We will assess that situation and we are really hopeful of having him back in the squad.” However, defender White may miss out after his ankle injury worsened after initial improvement saw him almost make the squad last weekend. “Hayden has gone over and rocked his ankle ligaments,” said Flitcfroft. “We have been looking at the severity of the strain and we have had it scanned. We are waiting on an update. “It had settled down quite a bit over a two day period and we thought we might have him in and around it last Saturday with how he was presenting. But it slowed down and ligaments can do that. “An ankle injury can sometimes be strange as it seems to come back after you’ve done it and you think it’s stable and okay and then after a couple of days of it doing really well the injury plateaus.”

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Mansfield Town set up Forest friendly for Mellis
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Tuesday 25 September 2018

Suspended Mansfield Town midfielder Jacob Mellis will top up his fitness in a specially arranged game tomorrow. Mellis completes his three game ban this weekend and manager David Flitcroft said: “We have planned a game on Thursday at Forest.

“It’s been designed so Jacob Mellis can play which gets him some game time and we might have a couple of the younger players there.

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/mansfield-town-set-up-forest-friendly-for-mellis-1-9367234

“Gibbo may get 75 minutes in that and Jordan Graham may play as well.”

Mellis was banned by the FA following an investigation into the infamous pre-season friendly brawl with Sheffield Wednesday. He will be back available again for Tuesday night’s visit of Oldham Athletic.

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We will stick to our ‘good system’ - Khan
mansfieldtown.net, Thursday 27 September 2018

Dynamic Mansfield Town midfielder Otis Khan believes the ‘system’ orchestrated by boss David Flitcroft will pay dividends.

The 23-year-old was speaking at a news conference at One Call Stadium this morning ahead of Saturday’s match at home to Northampton Town.

The club’s August Player of the Month talked about how the squad’s strategy has fared this season, which has seen the Stags lose just one of their league games so far this year.

He knows, however, that the team need to turn more draws into victories, having won twice and drawn five.

“I think like everyone can see we’re not far away so if we give up on the plan now we’ve thrown all that hard work away,” said Khan.

“I think it’s just getting that last bit of the plan together then everything comes along with it.

https://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/2018/september/khan-pre-northampton/

“It’s a good system that we play, and I think everyone knows the system well.

“Every game we’ve played we feel like we’ve been on top dominating possession, dominating the game, but we can’t get into this habit of playing nice as a team. We need to go and hurt teams.”

“I think every game we’ve had chances to see off the games and we should’ve got a lot more points than what we’ve got. I still think the positives are there. We’re getting these chances so it’s just the last bit of completing that now.”

Re-iterating Stags’ boss David Flitcroft’s desire to score more goals, he said: “I think we need to be more clinical and a bit more ruthless in front of goal when we get chances early on in the game. I think we have to finish them as early as we can and get that most important second goal.”

The Stags face a team in the bottom half of the table at home for the first time this season, facing Northampton who are placed 20th in the league.

When asked about whether the Cobblers’ league position, Khan said, “They’ve obviously just been relegated from League One, so they are a good team, so we can’t look at it as if it’s going to be an easy game.

“It’ll be a very possession based game but we can’t get into that habit of playing how they play being all nice and pretty but we’ve got good players in the team who can play that sort of way and we can dominate and take a positive if they’re going to play that way.”

iFollow Stags subscribers can watch Otis Khan's interview in full by logging into mansfieldtown.net/ifollow. Tickets for Saturday's fixture against Northampton are still available and can be purchased via http://www.stagstickets.co.uk.

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Khan hoping on home double for Mansfield Town
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Thursday 27 September 2018

Otis Khan knows the importance of Mansfield Town doing well in the two home games in four days they are about to face. Still struggling to really get their season going, the Stags welcome Northampton Town on Saturday before Oldham Athletic visit on Tuesday - and six points would make a huge difference to their disappointing 16th position in the table.

Midfielder Khan said: “We are crying out for it. We need to get the three points from both games in quick succession and then we will be right up there. “It’s a quick turnaround, but getting six points in two games really takes you up in the table. We can use it as a springboard to carry on up.

Read more at: https://www.hucknalldispatch.co.uk/sport/football/khan-hoping-on-home-double-for-mansfield-town-1-9369886

“Some teams in this league have got off to a flyer - like we probably should have done and everyone expected us to do. “Six points from these next two games will put us in a place where we need to be to kick on. “We have got the fans behind us every home game so we will use that to help us.” Although they have only lost once in their eight games, Stags have drawn too many and Khan said: “We have giving ‘nearly performances’ every game really. “Every match we have had chances to see off the game and should have got a lot more points than we have got. “But the positives are still there as we are making chances and it’s just about completing them now. “Personally I know I should have scored more goals and a few more assists. We just need to keep working hard in training and it will come. “We need to be a bit more clinical and more ruthless in front of goal.” He added: “When we get chances earlier on in the game we have to finish them as early as we can and then get that all-important second goal. “When teams play Mansfield we know they always want to put their best performance on, but if we can get those first and second goals we can see off the game.” Manager David Flitcroft has employed a 3-5-2 formation this season and Khan believes it will ultimately bring success. “Everyone can see we are not far away,” he said. “So if we give up on the plan now then we throw all that hard work away. “It’s just about getting that last bit of the plan together then we will be fine. It’s just about fine-tuning. “It’s a good system we play and we all know it well. “Every game we have played I feel we’ve been on top, dominating possession. But we can’t get into the habit of just playing nice football, we need to hurt teams and get those all-important goals.” Visitors Northampton have had a similar start to Mansfield, only winning once, but Khan knows they will provide a stiff test. “You can take a little bit of encouragement from their position, looking at the table,” he said. “But it’s still early in the season and no one knows where Northampton will finish. “They have obviously just been relegated from League One, having been there a couple of seasons, so they are a good team. “So we can’t look at it as if it’s going to be an easy game. Any team can beat anyone in League Two on the day. “I think it will be a very possession-based game, but we have good players who can dominate. “We can play how they do but we can do it much better. I think it will be a really interesting game.” Khan has now moved up from Yeovil following his summer transfer and is happy with his new home and club. “I am fully settled in the area now,” he said. “It’s a lot busier here than Yeovil, which is a bit in the middle of nowhere. This is close to everywhere and close to my family “The lads are really good and everything is going well. “It has been the right move for me and I just want to repay everyone here now and the fans, who are crying out for three points which I hope we can get them on Saturday.” Khan is enjoying his No.10 role for the side. “I get a lot of the ball there,” he said. “I can pick the ball up in some nice areas. It gives me a free role and I can go and look for the ball. I prefer doing that.”

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Defender looking to build on solid defensive record
mansfieldtown.net, Thursday 27 September 2018

Stags’ defender Matt Preston says Mansfield are looking to build on the strong defensive record they have set so far in Sky Bet League Two this season, having only conceded seven goals in their opening eight games.

Preston arrived in the summer and was David Flitcroft’s first signing as Stags’ manager.

In a news conference at One Call Stadium today, the 23-year-old talked about the Stags’ defensive record, with their number of goals conceded equalling the best in the division along with Lincoln City, Yeovil Town, Forest Green Rovers and MK Dons.

“I feel like I’ve been playing well when I’ve been playing, and like you’ve said we’ve got the joint record for least goals conceded,” said Preston.

“I feel like as a back three/back five we’re doing well, and I feel like we’re still learning. The more we play games, the more we learn, and we can get that record even better.

https://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/2018/september/preston-pre-northampton/

“I’m pleased but at the same time we’re displeased because we can do better, because all of us as a back three/back five believe we haven’t been opened up and had a goal scored against us, it’s always been a mistake or a lapse of concentration so obviously we can do better.”

“The gaffer has been telling us that [it starts in training] and that’s what he thinks. I think it’s true, training is where it’s got to start, and you’ve got to keep high standards in training.

“I think the number one thing we’ve been working on is the end product of things. I think we keep the ball well but when we get into the final areas it’s about our final product.

“We move the ball well, we keep the ball well and we have roughly 60% possession against most teams. It’s just about when we get to these crucial areas can we up the bit of quality?”

Looking forward to returning to One Call Stadium with two home games in quick succession against Northampton on Saturday and Oldham on Tuesday, Preston said: “Everyone likes playing here. We’ve turned it into almost a fortress and I think that’s what we have to do. We have to make it hard for teams to come here and get any sort of points.

“We’ve started well but some of the results we’re getting haven’t been what we’ve wanted.

“But at the same time, we’ve only got one loss [against Exeter], so you’ve got to take positives from that. It means that we’re hard to beat but we want to be winning and want to strive for better.”

Reflecting on last week’s 1-1 draw at Cambridge, Preston believes Mansfield needed to ‘dig in’ to come away with three points.

“I felt frustrated. We started the first 30 minutes and we were on fire, we got the goal and it felt like we took our foot off the gas a little bit which we can’t do and towards the end of the game they were obviously going to throw everything they’ve got at us.

“I felt like we could’ve hung on to the 1-0. Besides we weren’t playing very well but that’s the sort of game where you need to dig in.”

iFollow Stags subscribers can watch Matt Preston's interview in full by logging into mansfieldtown.net/ifollow.

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One win can kickstart Mansfield Town’s season believes defender Preston
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Thursday 27 September 2018

Mansfield Town defender Matt Preston believes one good result could send the Stags on a much-needed winning run. Ahead of Saturday’s visit of Northampton Town, the Stags are still trying to turn draws into wins, though have only lost once and have the division’s joint best defensive record.

“It’s just a matter of time,” said Preston. “We just need to get a few wins on the bounce and things will completely change. “I think it will take maybe one game where we get like a 3-0 and things will completely turn, or even if it’s just hanging on to a 1-0 win. As soon as we get one I think they will just keep rolling in.

Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/one-win-can-kickstart-mansfield-town-s-season-believes-defender-preston-1-9369456

“We are not doing badly at the minute, but we are drawing. So I think it will take one game or maybe two for things to really click.”

He continued: “It’s frustrating to be where we are. We started well, but some of the results we’ve been getting have not been what we’ve wanted. “We are frustrated as a team not to be winning some of the games we should be winning. “At the same time we are drawing games and have only had one loss - so we have to take positives from that.” Preston said the focus in training this week had been scoring goals and final balls. “We are hard to beat, but we are striving for better,” he said. “That starts in training. You have to keep high standards and, whatever we do there, we have to take into a game. “We have been working on our end product this week. We keep the ball well, but when we get into the final areas, it’s about the final product whether it’s a cross or a shot. “We are pleased with that but we can do better - I think all of us as a back three or five believe that. “We haven’t been opened up for the goals against us, it’s always been a mistake or a lapse in concentration.”

Last weekend’s trip to Cambridge was typical of the season so far as Stags led until the death before conceding an equaliser - albeit via a wicked deflection. “For the first 30 minutes or so we were on fire and we got the goal. But I think we took our foot off the gas a bit, which we can’t do,” he said. “Towards the end of the game they were obviously going to throw everything they’d got at us. “It was about digging in and trying to get that 1-0.

“Unfortunately they got a bit of spawn and it’s hit my thigh and gone absolutely top corner, which was so frustrating.”

Preston is looking forward to getting back home on Saturday for the first of two successive games at the One Call Stadium in four days. “Everyone likes playing here and we’ve turned it into almost a fortress,” he said. “We have to make it hard for teams to come here and get points.” On opponents Northampton, who have only won once, he added: “They have struggled a bit but you have to give all teams in this league respect. If you go into a game thinking it’s going to be an easy rider, it isn’t. “At the same time I think they have got to worry about us. “As with most teams in this league, the biggest threat to us is someone switching off at the back and the other team countering on that.”

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Mansfield Town defender feeling the rhythm again
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS

Centre half Matt Preston is delighted to be back in the Mansfield Town side after his concussion scare that saw him miss five games. The summer signing clashed heads with team mate Krystian Pearce at Yeovil and, although he completed the game and seemed okay, he subsequently took ill and had to go to hospital for a scan. “It was frustrating to miss those few games with a silly thing like concussion. But there are rules and regulations we have to follow,” he said ahead of tomorrow’s visit of Northampton Town. “It’s good to start to get into the rhythm of playing games again. “Tom had just come in as physio here and did everything he could. It’s a slow process. You have to be bled back in almost. If you do things too quickly you can go downhill and some people can lose their lives. “So I was glad Tom and the gaffer were understanding that I had to come back in slowly.” This is Preston’s second spell with boss David Flitcroft after working with him on loan at Swindon Town and he said: “He is a very knowledgable manager who knows what it takes to win games. “You could tell from the spell I had at Swindon when we went unbeaten for a long, long time.” The Stags new boy has been happy with his form in a defence boasting the joint best goals against record in the league. “I feel like I’ve been playing well when I have been playing,” he said. “We have the joint best defensive record on goals conceded so as a back three or back five we are doing well. “I do feel like we are still learning as there are still a few players not used to their positions. The more games we play the more we are going to learn and improve that record. “I am familiar with playing in a back three as I’ve done it for about three years now - across the whole back through, left, middle, right -so I am quite used to it at the minute.”

Read more at: https://www.hucknalldispatch.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town-defender-feeling-the-rhythm-again-1-9370910

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Powell and Morias still out for Cobblers as Pierre returns to the fold
Aaron Pierre is available after serving a one-match ban

northamptonchron.co.uk, by JEREMY CASEY, Thursday 27 September 2018

The Cobblers will still be without Junior Morias and Daniel Powell for Saturday’s trip Mansfield Town - but central defender Aaron Pierre is available after suspension.

Boss Dean Austin is hoping there are no other injury concerns, although he did admit one or two players are suffering from aches and sprains.

https://www.northamptonchron.co.uk/sport/football/powell-and-morias-still-out-for-cobblers-as-pierre-returns-to-the-fold-1-8649259

Morias and Powell are both still out with hamstring injuries, although the latter is close to being in contention again.

Austin said this weekend ‘will probably be a little bit too early’ for Powell, but he could come into contention for next Tuesday’s home date with Bury.

Morias is still a few weeks away, but Austin says the striker is recovering well, and is ‘ahead of schedule’ for his return to the fold as well.

The Town boss made four changes to the starting line-up for last Saturday’s 0-0 draw with Notts County but, barring injuries picked up in training, he is likely to go with the same 11 for the trip to Field Mill.

Pierre is available for selection after serving his one-match suspension for his sending off at Port Vale, but after Leon Barnett’s impressive showing against the Magpies, the former Wigan Athletic and Norwich City is set to keep his place alongside Ash Taylor at the heart of the defence.

Mansfield have two former Cobblers players in their squad, but neither will feature at the weekend.

Former Town player of the year Zander Diamond has yet to feature for the Stags this season due to a back problem, while Paul Anderson is fit but out of favour.

He hasn’t played a minute of first team football yet this campaign either.

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Dean Austin sees similarities between Northampton and Mansfield Town
chad.co.uk, Friday 28 September 2018

Northampton Town manager Dean Austin can see many similarities between the two under-achieving sides as Mansfield Town welcome the Cobblers on Saturday for a game both clubs are desperate to win. Stags have won just two out of their first nine games and Northampton one of their first nine, though trail Stags by a single point and can overtake them with a win at the One Call Stadium. “Mansfield are a decent side, and as a club they are obviously very ambitious as they have a massive budget,” said Austin. “They are probably a little bit like ourselves, in that watching some of their games they have played quite well and dominated at times, but not taken their chances. “They have opened teams up at times but not made the most of it, so they are very similar to us in that sense, and it is going to be a stern test for us. “But it is one we are looking forward to. “It is a good opportunity for us to play against a decent side, who want to play good football, and we will see how we go.”

Read more at: https://www.hucknalldispatch.co.uk/sport/football/dean-austin-sees-similarities-between-northampton-and-mansfield-town-1-9370884

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