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Archived News from February 2008

3rd February 2008 15:37

Audio interview with Billy Dearden from BBC Radio Nottingham (RealPlayer needed) http://www.bbc.co.uk/nottingham/realmedia/football/2008/stags_brentford_home_manager.ram

Audio interview with Carl Muggleton from BBC Radio Nottingham (RealPlayer needed) http://www.bbc.co.uk/nottingham/realmedia/football/2008/stags_brentford_home_player.ram
'We can stay up', says goalscoring Stags debutant
CHAD.CO.UK, BY Tim Morriss

NEW signing Jefferson Louis has all the potential to be a cult hero at Field Mill after making an instant impact in the disappointing 3-2 home defeat with Brentford.
And the 6ft 2ins striker, who socred within seven minutes of making his debut as a second half substitute, says the Stags can climb out of the relegation zone.

The bubbly Louis, signed on a three-month contract in midweek, gave struggling Mansfield a different attacking dimension with his pace, power and height.
He almost followed up his first equaliser with another late on, moments after Brentford grabbed a controversial 85th minute winner to send the Stags to the foot of the Football League, but this time his shot was deflected wide.

After the final whistle on Saturday he told Chad: "Of course we can move up the table. We have just got to go for it and be really positive

"We have games in hand and we have got to go out and win them.

"If we perform like we did for the first 10 minutes or so when I came on today, then we can do it.

"To go down without a fight would be the coward's way."

Louis says that he has not set any goalscoring targets, and just aims 'to do as well as I can in every game'.

Of his 63rd minute goal, created by the persistance of Micky Boulding and which hauled the Stags level at 2-2 for a while, he added: "I was really pleased. I was confident I would score today.

"It was all about anticipation. The ball was bouncing around and then I went through and tucked it away."

Louis' appearance clearly lifted the Stags' faithful, who quickly warmed to his whole-hearted efforts.

The striker, who has League experience with Oxford and Bristol Rovers but had been playing non-league at Weymouth earlier this season, added: "It makes me feel good to hear the fans cheering me. They were great.

"This is a chance of a lifetime for me to get back into the Football League. I want it!

"I was disappointed not to start today, but I understand the manager's reasons and his decision. I respect that. It is up to me to take my chance when I get it."

Experienced keeper Carl Muggleton, whose heroics get the Stags in the game at times, told Chad: "Jefferson really is a breath of fresh air around the club and the dressing room.

"New faces help to lift a team and he is a real character. New players put pressure on those already at the club and can be a kick up the backside to one or two."

Stags boss Billy Dearden said that he had not selected Louis for his full debut because of the striker's lack of recent match practice.

He told Chad: "He gives us a different dimension, put himself about and got a goal. It was a good start."

Dearden slams defending after Stags' fifth successive Mill defeat
STAGS boss Billy Dearden slammed his side's defending once again as they conceded three times in a fifth successive home defeat, losing 3-2 against Brentford today.
Mansfield have let in 12 goals in those five home losses and Dearden said: "I felt we deserved something from the game.

"If you score two goals it should be enough to win a football match if you defend right and are professional about it. But some of our defending today was poor.

Their third goal was offside. It was sloppy from us but the referee says it hit our man and he was played on. Surely he is active then? Someone will have to explain the rules to me. As far as I am concerned he was off.

"We have shot ourselves in the foot again and it is hard to take when you have put so much in. We have got to stop the rot somewhere along the line.

"The new lads did okay when they came on. Some people will ask why I didn't start with them but they have not played any football recently and will get a good week's training in this week to get them ready for next weekend.

"Jefferson stuck his goal away - that's what he is there for. You could see he wasn't fit but he will give us a different dimension. He came on and gave them problems.

"Brentford have done very well and were magnificent today. Their away record is second to none. But they know they have been in a game today.

"All in all we didn't deserve to lose a decent game of football."

Bees boss Andy Scott said: "I think Mansfield are one of the better sides down there.

"They are capable of scoring goals, pass the ball well and are very organised.

"I think Billy will be disappointed not to get anything after that first half but I think they can get out of trouble without a shadow of a doubt."

Injured defender Martin McIntosh has been allowed to go home following the death of his brother-in-law last night and will keep in touch with Dearden about his return.

Fellow injury victim Alex John-Baptiste will have his back problem examined by another surgeon this week.

Mansfield Town (A): Press Conference Notes
Andy Scott Quotes:
“I was very disappointed with the first half performance to be honest. It was a good bit of quality from Kevin for the first goal that kept us in it to be honest.

But we came out for the second half and we started on the front foot a bit and you could sense a bit more urgency from us and a bit more energy. That was good because that's what we're about.

Certainly in the first half I felt we didn't have the energy about us that we have done in recent games. I reminded them of what we wanted and in the second half we imposed ourselves on them more. It was disappointing to concede the second goal but we kept going and it was a great goal from Nathan to give us the win.

He scores goals. He scores all sorts of goals. He can get the deflections in the box, the headers and the ones where he's got a bit of time on his hands as well. So obviously it's a great debut for him and we're delighted for him.

He's not the finished article by a long stretch. He's only been a pro for a year. So we're not going to make him out to be something he's not. But he's certainly a player that can be whatever he wants to be. He's got all the attributes. He's big and strong and quick and is good in the air. And he can score goals. So that's quite a lot to have in your favour. Yes I've got to work with him. There are certain things I saw today that I can work on with him. If he gets them into his game he's going to be even more of a presence for us.

I felt that we could probably have killed the game off a little bit more. We had some chances at 3-2 and if one of them had gone in it would have made things a little easier.

I thought Alan Connell put himself about really well. He didn't really get the rub of the green but that's what I'm looking for. He can score goals but he's also adding a physical side to his game that we haven't seen for a while. He was a real handful for those two at the back.

That's the sort of play we were working on when we went away [for the second goal]. We tried to take it into Tuesday and it nearly worked. I never tell them to stop trying these things. If you try and put the shackles on them you're not going to get the best out of them.

Gary Smith made a great little run and Alan Connell made a good run and a good finish. They do that every day in training. They enjoy it and have a good understanding. It's nice to watch. I'd rather win 3-2 than a scrappy 1-0.

They're probably one of the better sides down there. They're capable of scoring goals, pass it well and are very organised. I think they'll get out of it without a shadow of a doubt.

Kevin O'Connor has done his hamstring today which is a big blow because he has been outstanding all season, not just since I took over. Kevin couldn't walk properly so it doesn't look good. But we'll let it settle down and give him a scan on Monday. It'll be a big blow for us but it gives somebody else the chance to come in and grab their opportunity.

We've not exactly set ourselves a target as a group, but we know if we play with the tempo and desire and attitude that we have been doing in the last 9 games we can improve in the table. It's up to us where we get to and see where that is at the end of the season.

Nathan's a really nice kid. Very level headed. He wants to play football, is desperate to play and was chomping at the bit. He got a bit of a knock in training yesterday on his knee but he said 'just play me. Do what you can. I'm desperate to play'. And that is what I was looking for.

That's the sort of things I found out when I researched him. To see that character when he came to me on Friday, that he was sore but let's get on with it. In League Two you're going to take a lot of knocks and you've got to get on with it.

He loves scoring goals. He said 'that's what I'm here for'. He expects to score goals, he expects to be in the side and to score goals. If he doesn't he's going to be disappointed. That's what natural goal scorers are like.

It was a difficult chance for him because he had plenty of time to think about it but he slotted it home well.

Monty was disappointed to be left out. But what you can see is we're forming a squad for all over the pitch. We've got a very strong bench. Pooley was very disappointed when he came off but I said to him sometimes it just doesn't work. I said to him as a young player you've got to experience the lows as well as the highs. And it's about how you come back.

Jordan Parkes came on and did a good job down the left. Craig Stone did an excellent job covering Kevin. It's not a surprise to me because I know what they're like and that's why I brought them to the club.”


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