3 Oct 2008
MANSFIELD v WOKING
Cards' first visit to Field Mill
MANSFIELD TOWN v WOKING
3pm on Saturday 4 October 2008
(N.B. Away fans cannot buy tickets on the day for this game.)
Our first-ever game against the Stags sees us travel there at a time when they sit in third place in the table, with five wins and a draw in their first six home games. But confidence is high in the Cards' camp and it wouldn't be a great surprise to see us get a point at least, although we need to score more goals if we're not to rely unduly on our defensive attributes.
Now that Phil Gilchrist has got us winning at home, we need to start picking up some points away from Kingfield too, although Field Mill is clearly not an easy place to add to the solitary point we've gained on our travels so far, at Oxford United. A solid defence - no goals conceded in the games against Salisbury and Histon – ought to provide us with a sound platform for away games but, at both York and Ebbsfleet, we came unstuck in spite of looking very secure for most of those games. It is to be hoped that Colin Miles, who limped off in the game last Saturday, recovers in time: he's not the fastest defender around but his positioning is generally superb. Assuming everyone is fit, Phil seems likely to start with the same side that kicked off in the last two games.
The news from Phil Gilchrist on Wednesday was that, although quite a few players picked up knocks from the Histon game, he was expecting everyone to be fit apart from Paolo Vernazza and Abdou El Kholti, neither of whom is expected to be available for the home game against Weymouth on Tuesday evening.
Billy McEwan, the former York manager, has done a great job so far in quickly assembling a team following his arrival at the beginning of June, when he found only six players on the club's books. Players brought in during the summer included Adie Moses (Lincoln), Michael Blackwood (Kidderminster via Oxford), Mark Stallard (Lincoln), Jason Lee (Notts Co), Gary Silk (Notts Co), Matt Somner (Notts Co), Alan O'Hare (Chesterfield) and Gavin Hurren (Kidderminster). The most recent arrival is full back James Kay from Sheffield Wednesday. Jason Lee was, of course, famous at one time for his 'pineapple' haircut but he looks a bit different now!
The Stags are definitely 'home boys', winning their first five games at Field Mill (against Histon, Kidderminster, Northwich, Grays and Eastbourne) before drawing against Cambridge United.
Overshadowing their good start are allegations of impropriety over player registrations, with a hearing due on Monday into suggestions that ineligible players were fielded in their first two games. There is a separate dispute about the registration of former Grays striker, Aaron O'Connor.
Mansfield Town FC
Field Mill Ground
Notts NG18 5 DA
Tel: 0870 7563160
Leaves 10.00am. Members £19. Non-Members £24. Phone the Club Shop (01483 772470) to book your place.
Exit M1 at J28; take A38 towards Mansfield; after about six miles turn right, at crossroads, into Belvedere Street; then, a quarter of a mile on, turn right into Quarry Street.
You could get the 10.55 from St Pancras, arriving at Nottingham at 12.34 and then catch the 12.56 to Mansfield, getting in at 13.27. Trains back leave at 17.13 and 17.46. The station is only five minutes' walk from the ground: leave the station and cross over the road towards the retail park and the floodlights of the ground.
The two teams have never met before.
Come on, you Cards!
N.B. Don't forget that the Cards are at home to John Hollins's Weymouth side on Tuesday evening, kick-off 7.45pm.
McEwan careful with Stags fitness
audio interview with McEwan at ---->
Billy McEwan had only four weeks to build a squad before the big kick-off
Mansfield Town manager Billy McEwan has toned down training to help his players cope with their workload of matches.
After a short pre-season due to the late takeover of the club, Mansfield have now played 12 Blue Square Premier games in just seven weeks.
"Fatigue can set in," McEwan told BBC Radio Nottingham. "But we're being careful. We don't overwork them on the training pitch.
"We work on the mind and sharpness but we don't work long double sessions."
And McEwan is confident that his players, who have lifted the Stags to third in the Blue Square Premier table largely on the back of an unbeaten home record, are lasting the pace.
"You need a foundation with a good pre-season and we've not been able to do that," he said. "But most modern players now are playing for high stakes and make sure they look after themselves".
McEwan thanks Stags supporters
CHAD.co.uk, 03 October 2008, By John Lomas
STAGS boss Billy McEwan is hoping the new proposed 'singing section' at Field Mill will help spur his side on to greater things.
And he was delighted to see the Stags' Supporters' Association agree a deal to pump in £7,500 into the club, some of which will help pay for training facilities at John Fretwell Sporting Complex.
Stags fans are hoping to get everyone together to raise the roof in the lower west Stand against Woking tomorrow and McEwan said "It sounds a great idea. They made a lot of noise against Cambridge and it was a fantastic atmosphere.
"It drives the lads on and can act as our 12th man.
"Without the fans there is no club. We appreciate the hard work and hours of canvassing about to raise money for the club. We know that and the player are told that.
"Mansfield Town is not just about the team on the pitch. The fans are part of the team and we all play a vital part down to the groundsman and maintainance man. They're all part of the team as far as I a concerned.
"We appreciate we have good facilities up at John Fretwell Centre, they look after us well up there, and we are grateful for the fans' help in paying for that."
McEwan: We must maintain flow of points
Evening Post, 3 Oct 08
Billy McEwan today urged his Mansfield side to better their points tally for the first quarter of the season in the lead-up to Christmas.The Stags have taken 21 points from their first 12 Blue Square Premier games of 2008-2009.
McEwan is relatively pleased with that return using what has been an almost entirely new squad this season.
But the Scot believes his charges are capable of improving on that record in the run-up to the halfway point of the campaign.
"I have now got a target for our players which I didn't have before because they were new and I didn't know what they were capable of," said McEwan.
"We are now just past the first quarter of the season and we have six wins, three draws and three defeats, which gives us a guide.
"We have scored 21 times and conceded 16 with just two clean sheets, which is not good enough.
"We have to try to win at least seven games out of the next 12, if not more, and certainly don't want to do any worse than that.
"The goals are also targets. Mark Stallard has seven and Aaron O'Connor has got a few and they have to try to get more. "And at the back we are conceding too many twos in games and not getting enough clean sheets.
"I would like to think we can better, but it doesn't always work like that."
Moses: Stags can flourish in adversity
Evening Post, 3 October 2008
MANSFIELD skipper Adie Moses knows all about battling through a football club's adversity.
The central defender and a host of his team-mates went for several months without being paid their full wages at Huddersfield Town in the course of the 2002-03 season.
It was a scenario that eventually saw the Terriers go into administration after a PFA-backed petition submitted by the players was successfully heard at Leeds High Court.
Yet despite their differences with the club's management, Moses, a £225,000 capture from Barnsley in 2000, insisted it never affected performances on he field.
In fact, he recalls, if anything, it brought the team close together.
%3Cbody%3E%3Cdiv%20id%3D%22adDiv%22%3E%3CA%20HREF%3D%22http%3A//ads.anm.co.uk/ADCLICK/CID%3Dfffffffcfffffffcfffffffc/AAMSZ%3D452x118/SITE%3DTHISISNOTT/AREA%3DFOOTBALL/SUBAREA%3D/ARTICLE%3D371860/acc_random%3D9780510498/pageid%3D/RS%3D10307.%22%20target%3D%22_new%22%3E%3CIMG%20SRC%3D%22http%3A//iad.anm.co.uk/anmdefaultad.gif%22%20ALT%3D%22%22%20border%3D0%20style%3D%22margin-bottom%3A%200px%3B%22%3E%3C/A%3E%3C/div%3EWhile the Stags' off-the-field problems are far removed from that of the West Yorkshire club at that time, Moses knows they have the same potential to disrupt on-field momentum.
On Monday, the club will attend a Football Conference hearing in Birmingham where they will answer allegations they fielded ineligible players in early season matches, thought to relate to the matches against Ebbsfleet and Histon.
Like everyone else, Moses is unsure what the outcome of that will be.
But the 33-year-old says that if the Stags' worst fears do come true – that they are found guilty and docked points – the playing squad have to maintain their focus.
"It would be a big blow if we got points taken off, there is no doubt about that," said the Mansfield skipper.
"Points are hard to come by and we have had some difficult games so far. To think how hard we have worked to just have points taken away would be hard to swallow.
"But as professional footballers, there is nothing we can do about that. Our job is just to go out on the pitch and get as many points as we can.
"It is the rest of the staff who will deal with the situation and we can't let it affect us and stop us doing our jobs.
"Adversity can make people more determined. When we were up against it at Huddersfield after going into administration and not being paid, the team spirit was terrific.
"If points were taken off then I'm sure that would happen here and the manager would be stressing for us to do that."
In days gone by, it was fairly rare for teams to lose points for administrative transgressions.
But, as Moses points out, Mansfield would not be the only club in that boat if the Football Conference did go down that route.
He said: "We would not be the first club to have points taken off them if it did happen; look at Luton and Rotherham.
"I'm not saying it's anything like that, and hopefully we won't get points taken off, but it is good they will be making the decision soon, so we know where we stand.
"And at least there is still a long way to go in the season so if we did lose points there would be time to make them up."
Moses faces a race to be fit to face Woking tomorrow after coming off in the 3-2 win at Salisbury with an ankle injury.
But regardless of whether he makes it, the Doncaster-born player is pleased to see his boss Billy McEwan striving to bring in another central defender on loan.
"We have been aware that the squad has not been big enough. If one of the centre backs is out and then the other is struggling we could have a problem.
"Gavin Hurren can play there and did a decent job and Silky (Gary Silk) and Woody (Chris Wood) could fit in there, but they are really full-backs.
"But even if everyone was fit, from a competition point of view, you can't beat someone breathing down your neck."
Moses in Stags fitness fight
Evening Post, 2 October 2008
ADIE Moses is fighting to be fit for Saturday's clash with Woking – but admits the decision over whether he plays could be out of his hands.
The Stags' skipper came off at half-time in the 3-2 victory over Salisbury last week.
Central defender Moses has been experienced some pain from the injury and has been receiving treatment from physio Paul Madin.
He believes it is touch and go whether he will make the clash with the Cards where Mansfield hope to preserve their unbeaten home record.
"It has still been quite sore since the game and it's frustrating to get injured," said Moses.
%3Cbody%3E%3Cdiv%20id%3D%22adDiv%22%3E%3CA%20HREF%3D%22http%3A//ads.anm.co.uk/ADCLICK/CID%3Dfffffffcfffffffcfffffffc/AAMSZ%3D452x118/SITE%3DTHISISNOTT/AREA%3DFOOTBALL/SUBAREA%3D/ARTICLE%3D370925/acc_random%3D2434844892/pageid%3D/RS%3D10307.%22%20target%3D%22_new%22%3E%3CIMG%20SRC%3D%22http%3A//iad.anm.co.uk/anmdefaultad.gif%22%20ALT%3D%22%22%20border%3D0%20style%3D%22margin-bottom%3A%200px%3B%22%3E%3C/A%3E%3C/div%3E"The manager made the decision to come off at Salisbury and that was probably the right thing to do, even if I would have given it a go.
"It is a race against time for Saturday so whether I will be for or not I don't know. It might be that the manager makes that decision for me.
"I want to play, but I have been around long enough now to know that there are plenty of games left after Saturday if I don't."
Meanwhile, Mansfield are hoping to tie up a deal for a central defender later this afternoon.
With Moses struggling, the Stags have little in the way of cover in that area.
But manager Billy McEwan is waiting on a phone call from the manager of the club in question to finalise an agreement.
McEwan today ruled out a move for Scunthorpe United's left-winger Peter Winn.
The 19-year-old has come through the youth ranks at Glanford Park to make four substitute appearances for the Iron's first team.
But the Grimsby-born player, who can also play up front, has been confined to reserve team football this season.
"I have looked at him, as I have done a lot of players, but I not spoken to him about coming here," said McEwan.
Stags hope on loan defender
CHAD.co.uk, 02 October 2008 , by John Lomas
Billy McEwan is hoping to have a new on-loan defender in to face Woking on Saturday (3pm) as Stags look to extend their unbeaten home record.
And he is also looking for a clean sheet after assessing the otherwise impressive statistics from the first quarter of the BSP season.
Stags skipper Adie Moses is struggling to shake off a calf strain which forced him off midway through last weekend's 3-2 win at Salisbury.
Gavin Hurren can play there but McEwan said; "I have been trying for ages to get another defender in and is not as easy as people think it is.
"But I have intentionally kept quite a few bob from my budget back for loan players.
"Hopefully my phone will go and we will have one in. Adie still has a chance for Saturday and we do have players like Gavin Hurren and Chris Wood who can drop in there too."
Stags' other injury worries, Nathan Arnold and Aaron O'Connor, who both scored last week, are both back in training.
Visitors Woking have a new boss in Phil Gilchrist and have won two games 1-0 up him after spending the season at the wrong end of the table so far.
"We won't underestimate them," said McEwan. "You can have all the talent in the world but hard work always beats talent if talent doesn't work hard.
"We have plenty of experience here. But it means nothing if you are not focused and 'at it' mentally.
"We have no divine right to win at home. We may have to grind some results out here as teams will look at our record and come here to defend and try to catch us on the break.
We need to be solid, compact and get more clean sheets."
McEwan has had a good look at the first quarter of season stats and says he now has something to work with – particularly the clean sheets.
"Before we started the season this was a new bunch of players and we had no idea what they were capable of," he said.
"But the first 12 games reads won six, drawn three lost three, scoring 21 goals and conceding 16 – now I know what they are capable of. It is a good gauge.
"The question now is can we better that over the next 12 matches? Now we can set targets.
"The goals scored is one of the top three or four in the league. But it is obvious where our problems lies as we have conceded too many twos and only managed two clean sheets. We have to get that out of our systems.
"And we must come out of the traps all guns firing in games, not sleepy. You snooze – you lose."
McEwan rules out Scunthorpe winger bid
Evening Post, 2 October 2008
BILLY McEwan today ruled out a loan move for Scunthorpe United's left-winger Peter Winn.
The 19-year-old has come through the youth ranks at Glanford Park to make four substitute appearances for the Iron's first team. The Grimsby-born player, who can also play up front, has been confined to reserve team football this season. But manager McEwan said speculation he was about to move for the teenager was wide of the mark. “I have looked at him, as I have done a lot of players, but I not spoken to him about coming here,” he said.
McEwan: Mansfield Town's home record under threat
Evening Post, 2 October 2008
MANSFIELD risk losing their unbeaten home record if they underestimate Woking on Saturday, boss Billy McEwan warned today.
The Cards had a dreadful start to the season, which resulted in manager Kim Grant being replaced by Phil Gilchrist.
And while the Surrey club are still at the wrong end of the Blue Square Premier table, they have won their last two games.
McEwan is adamant there can be no sign of the complacency from his players that he felt crept into their game during the 1-0 defeat at Altrincham last week.
He wants Mansfield to add another victory to their record of five wins and a draw in six Field Mill games this season.
%3Cbody%3E%3Cdiv%20id%3D%22adDiv%22%3E%3CA%20HREF%3D%22http%3A//ads.anm.co.uk/ADCLICK/CID%3Dfffffffcfffffffcfffffffc/AAMSZ%3D452x118/SITE%3DTHISISNOTT/AREA%3DFOOTBALL/SUBAREA%3D/ARTICLE%3D368152/acc_random%3D6051614647/pageid%3D/RS%3D10307.%22%20target%3D%22_new%22%3E%3CIMG%20SRC%3D%22http%3A//iad.anm.co.uk/anmdefaultad.gif%22%20ALT%3D%22%22%20border%3D0%20style%3D%22margin-bottom%3A%200px%3B%22%3E%3C/A%3E%3C/div%3EMcEwan said: "Woking are a decent side. They beat Histon last Saturday and anyone who does that deserves respect.
"We will learn from Altrincham that you underestimate teams at your peril, no matter where they are in the league.
"Three points went down the tube because we didn't start the game correctly. It was a tough way to learn that lesson.
"I keep saying it – anyone can beat anyone. We saw that again at the weekend with Lewes beating a big club like Oxford."
McEwan believes the outcome of matches is down to what his team does, not the opposition.
He said: "We respect teams but the most important thing is how we perform.
"If we play to our capabilities, with the League experience we have got, we have enough to take care of anyone."
The Football Conference will hold a hearing into Mansfield's alleged fielding of an ineligible player in Birmingham on Monday.
The claims are thought to relate to the club's first two games of the season, against Ebbsfleet and Histon.
Hurren is determined to break through
Evening Post, 1 October 2008
Gavin Hurren today spoke of his determination to nail down a regular first-team place at Mansfield Town.The 22-year-old has started two games this season and appeared three times from the bench after joining in the summer from Kidderminster Harriers.
But after playing an important role in the Stags' victory at Salisbury last Saturday - playing in midfield and at the back when skipper Adie Moses went off injured - he is hoping to improve that tally in the coming weeks.
"It has been a frustrating wait to get into the team," said Hurren. "I got a little injury in pre-season and though I was fit for the start, the lads who began the season did really well to get the points on the board.
"It has been disappointing because I want to play like everyone else, but you can understand it when the boys are doing well.
"You keep training hard and waiting for you chance, which the gaffer has always said will come, and when it comes you have to make the most of it.
"I am looking to have a run in the side and hoping to do well enough for the boss to keep me in.
"But it won't be easy because we have got a good squad, even if it is not the biggest."
Former Forest trainee Hurren is as relieved as the fans that Mansfield clinched their first away victory of the campaign at Salisbury.
It also ended a blip in form that saw the Stags pick up just one point in three games.
Hurren said: "We all said before the Salisbury game that we needed to get a good result on the road - and we did it."
Mansfield reserves lost 3-1 at Walsall reserves in their opening league game of the season last night.
The Stags are looking at trialists David Knight, a keeper from Swansea, and central defender Ricky Baines, formerly of Accrington Stanley.
Stags target Winn for loan move
BBC.CO.UK, 1 Oct 2008
Mansfield Town have enquired about the availability of Scunthorpe United winger Peter Winn for a loan move.
The Stags have registered their interest with Scunthorpe and are hoping to find the 19-year-old some regular first team football.
Winn signed for Scunthorpe in October 2006, but has been limited to four league appearances from the bench.
Mansfield manager Billy McEwan has made no secret of his desire to bring in new players on loan at Field Mill.
Latest | October 2008