{ the news }
An independent supporters' website dedicated to Mansfield Town FC
Archived News from April 2009

17th April 2009 11:29

David Holdsworth reaction from BBC Radio Nottingham here

David Holdsworth video interview here

Curtis Woodhouse post match video interview with David Jackson


Northwich Vics are relegated from Blue Square Premier, despite victory over Mansfield Town
by Ben Coulbeck, Mid Cheshire Chronicle

NORTHWICH Vics were finally relegated on Easter Monday but they went down fighting with a performance full of pride and passion.

Goals from Simon Grand and Lee Elam either side of half-time completed the thoroughly deserved 2-0 victory over Mansfield Town but Vics' late surge has come too late.

Relegation-rivals Weymouth's draw with Forest Green Rovers means that second-from-bottom Vics cannot catch the teams above them.

Proud caretaker boss Andy Preece, who has guided Vics to three wins and a draw in their last five games, said the players had given everything for the cause.

“They have been awesome, just fantastic. We only had 12 players to pick from really and this had been the situation for a number of weeks.

“I am gutted for the players. They haven't got their wages up to date but seeing what they have put in they do not deserve to be in a team that is being relegated.

“If they had just had the right guidance I am sure they would not have been in this position.

“It's a real shame that we have run out time.”

Chanting “I am Northwich 'till I die”, the fans, who turned out in strong numbers on Monday, gave Vics a standing ovation after the game.

And Preece, who has said he would like to be in charge for next season's assault on the Conference North, said that giving supporters something to cheer was one of his priorities.

He said: “We just do the best we can for Northwich Victoria. Put some pride back in the club, give some back to the supporters who have gone through tough times and lift the whole place.

“Hopefully that good feeling will branch out of the ground to local businesses. Hopefully we will get the investment because if we don't and the fans don't come in then nothing will change.

“Whether we are here for that, it doesn't really matter as long as the club moves forward.”

Vics, who face Lewes at home on Saturday (3pm) are nine points from safety with three games left.

But as target sides Weymouth and York are due to play each other, a point for either team will effectively relegate Vics from the Conference.

Vics were last relegated in 2005 but returned immediately under Steve Burr.

Assistant manager Andy Morrison is leaving the club temporarily to help coach Trinidad and Tobago for their CONCACAF World Cup qualifiers.

“I will be back for preseason,” he said.


Holdsworth orders extra training for Stags players after away flop

By John Lomas
DAVID Holdsworth will force his players back into extra training on Tuesday morning after yet another dreadful away display in losing 2-0 at relegation-threatened Northwich Victoria on Easter Monday.
"We were very poor and it seems to be a weak mentality about going away from home which I won't accept," he said.

"They are making my job very easy right now as they have three games to earn a career at my football club and I won't give out contracts that people don't deserve.

"I have 20 players out of contract this summer and right now there looks to be 20 places going at the moment – it's as simple as that.

"They can either lay down and move or roll their sleeves up and show me some response.

"We have one more away game to show me that response.

"Collectively, few of my players came through that game with any ticks today. We didn't hold it up. We didn't win any firs balls until Rob Duffy came on to stop it coming straight back down our throats.

"It was a game of limited chances though Louis Briscoe had the best chance in the first half.

"Other than that we were all huff and puff. I can't give my players any credit whatsoever. I can't defend them and they have just had the full force of that in the dressing room. They sat there like rabbits in the headlights.

"The only way we will get it right is by working hard on the training ground and I will have them in at 9.30am tomorrow and they will know about it.

"I won't accept a weak performance. It is all about the players' mindset away from home and we clearly don't have enough leaders out there when we are away."

Jason White saw two goals fly past him in his first game in goal this season and Holdsworth added: "It was a tough game for Jason as there were lot of high balls into the box.

"I was disappointed in the manner of both goals we conceded as both were in the six yard box. But I won't blame individuals. They will all take the blame for them. Our team ethic was poor.

"It is not fair on our supporters. I will not accept coming away and laying down.

"My son Charlie and his mates from school would have put up more fight than that. – and they are aged four. My players should be embarrassed.

Holdworth gave 17-year-old local lad Conor Higginson the last 20 minutes but he barely got a kick and the manager said: "Conor is a great kid and I would have liked to have given him a winning opportunity. I felt for the boy at the end."

"It is disappointing not to turn up at side struggling at the bottom," added striker Daryl Clare.

"We are a bit of a two-headed monster at the moment home and away. We show all that flair and energy at home but for four away games on the bounce we have been unpredictable and given a poor account of ourselves.

"The home side were fighting for survival but as players we should still have our personal pride. We need to hit the same standards away from home that we have been hitting at home and we can't afford to have away form like this next season.

"I wasn't happy with my form today. But, after so long out, maybe a third game in six games was one too many for me at the moment."

Skipper Curtis Woodhouse added: "This away form is a mental thing.

"At home you have the fans behind you and it seems easier but away from home we have been powderpuff.

"If you are going to lose you want to go down with a fight but today we went down very tamely.

"I feel very responsible as captain. I am the leader out there. I can assure fans that I will make sure that doesn't happen again and if that means falling out with people then so be it.

"We have to get this monkey off our backs in our last away game on Saturday.

"It is one last chance to earn contracts and players need to stand up and be counted away from home.

"I am the same as a lot of them, I am out of contract this summer."


Evening Post:
Woodhouse angry at Stags' display
Tuesday, April 14, 2009, 06:54Comment on this story

SKIPPER Curtis Woodhouse was left angered by the performance of Mansfield Town at Northwich.
He clearly felt not everyone had pulled their weight in a 2-0 defeat over in Cheshire.
And he is demanding an immediate improvement in Saturday's last away game of the season at Woking.
"I thought we were poor all through the game, a little bit powder puff, which is how we have been away from home," said Woodhouse.
"We didn't really show up and started really badly and we didn't help ourselves doing that because that got their confidence up.
%3Cbody%3E%3Cdiv%20id%3D%22adDiv%22%3E%3CA%20HREF%3D%22http%3A//ads.anm.co.uk/ADCLICK/CID%3Dfffffffcfffffffcfffffffc/AAMSZ%3D452x118/POS%3D/SITE%3DTHISISNOTT/AREA%3DFOOTBALL/SUBAREA%3D/ARTICLE%3D898715/acc_random%3D5891990754/pageid%3D/RS%3D%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"There wasn't any aspect of the game that was good for us – in attack or defence.
"When you are at home you can sometimes get away with only six or seven players being at it, but when you are away you need all 11.
"There are some of us who need to start standing up and being counted.
"The fact we are not competing at either end of the table shouldn't have a bearing on it.
"A lot of people are out of contract and if they don't get the offer of a contract they could be out of the professional game.
"And you should always play for personal pride. Every time I go out onto the pitch I want to win."
Woodhouse knows the team will need a marked improvement to avoid a sixth run on the bounce away from home at Woking on Saturday.
He said: "There will be no hiding place down there because they are another team in a relegation battle.
"Another performance like we put in against Northwich and we are just going to get our backsides smacked again."

Holdsworth slams 'weak-minded' Stags
Tuesday, April 14, 2009, 07:29Comment on this story

DAVID Holdsworth branded his Mansfield Town players "weak-minded" after another desperately poor away performance at relegation-bound Northwich Victoria.
The Vics would have gone down had they not beaten the Stags and there is still massive odds against them surviving in the Blue Square Premier.
But they comfortably beat Mansfield in Cheshire to inflict a fifth straight away defeat on the visitors.
"It was very poor from us," said Holdsworth. "All I can do is apologise to the fans for that performance because it was not good enough.
"It seems to be that there is a weak mentality about some of the players. We haven't got enough leaders away from home.
%3Cbody%3E%3Cdiv%20id%3D%22adDiv%22%3E%3CA%20HREF%3D%22http%3A//ads.anm.co.uk/ADCLICK/CID%3Dfffffffcfffffffcfffffffc/AAMSZ%3D452x118/POS%3D/SITE%3DTHISISNOTT/AREA%3DFOOTBALL/SUBAREA%3D/ARTICLE%3D898838/acc_random%3D1129992896/pageid%3D/RS%3D%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"They have shown they have ability. When we are at home, we get the ball out wide and penetrate.
"But we can't just turn up for 50% of our matches.
"You can't have only one or two leaders, you have to have eight or nine and that is the same whether you are in the Premier League or this league.
"I need the players to have ability and desire. I was expecting a few home truths in the dressing room, but they just sat there."
Goals in either half from Simon Grand and Lee Elam sealed Mansfield's fate.
Holdsworth said: "I'm not naming individuals, but we only have a couple who come through that with any credit. I can't defend the players and I won't.
"It is not down to a lack of effort – there was effort but it was misguided. The players have to take responsibility."
Holdsworth reaffirmed his troops will have to be a whole lot better at Woking if they want to be in the frame at Field Mill next season.
"I can't keep shouting at them, but the decisions I have to make are becoming increasingly obvious and easy," he said.
"If anyone is not up for the fight then they can come and see me and they can go on their way.
"There are 20 players out of contract and after that you would have to say there will be 20 places to fill.
"The players have to show what they can do but they only have three more games to do that."
The Mansfield boss was pleased to hand a first team debut to 17-year-old striker Conor Higginson, from Ollerton, but wished the "great lad" could have had a winning match for his debut.

Holdsworth gives Stags ultimatum

Mansfield Town manager David Holdsworth has warned his players they have three matches to earn a future at the Stags after a poor 2-0 defeat at Northwich.

The Stags have lost six out of their last seven away matches.

Holdsworth told BBC Radio Nottingham: "They're making my job very easy - I won't give anyone a contract [based on Monday's performance.]

"Either they'll lay down and move on, or they'll roll their sleeves up and show the right response."

Holdsworth added: "There's a weak mentality about some of the players.

"I'm not going to name individuals because collectively there was only a couple that came through."

Holdsworth said his side, which struggled to win the first ball in a game of limited chances, have not got enough leaders away from home.

"I can't give my players any credit whatsoever.

"The only way we're going to get it right is by working hard on the training ground, so the players are in again in the morning.

"They'll know all about it because I won't, and Mansfield Town cannot, accept performances like that. It was weak," he said.

The Stags face Woking, Altrincham and Stevenage before the end of the season.

Holdsworth has signed a new contract keeping him at Field Mill until 2013.

Clare: Stags have to sort out away form
Thursday, April 16, 2009, 08:00Comment on this story

Mansfield Town to finish their away programme in style at Woking on Saturday.
The Stags have been disappointing all season on their travels, winning only five throughout the campaign.
Their run of form away from Field Mill has been particularly poor in recent weeks with five defeats in a row coming at Cambridge, Grays, Histon Wrexham and Northwich.
But striker Clare says Mansfield are determined to end on a high.
"I know the players will be really up for finishing the away season with a win, especially after what happened at Northwich," said Clare.
%3Cbody%3E%3Cdiv%20id%3D%22adDiv%22%3E%3CA%20HREF%3D%22http%3A//ads.anm.co.uk/ADCLICK/CID%3Dfffffffcfffffffcfffffffc/AAMSZ%3D452x118/POS%3D/SITE%3DTHISISNOTT/AREA%3DFOOTBALL/SUBAREA%3D/ARTICLE%3D905895/acc_random%3D7541800300/pageid%3D/RS%3D%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 players have been hurting and anyone who doesn't want to put things right isn't going to be sticking around.
"We have to try to end things on a positive note, even if it means doing things ugly.
"You aren't always going to be on top all the time in away games, so sometimes you have to battle as well as play your football.
"Woking are in a battle for survival, while it is awkward for us because we find ourselves in mid-table.
"But we have to get into the habit of getting positive results away from home.
"If we want to be challenging we have to start doing that because there is no way you can do it on your home form alone."
Clare admits the contrast between playing up front for the Stags at home and away has been marked so far.
He said: "In the last couple of home games I could have probably helped myself to four goals with the chances we have created.
"Away from home we have been relying on the odd knockdown here or there or a bit of luck, which can be frustrating.
"Maybe at times we are just lacking that bit of experience of how to get things done away from home."
Mansfield reserves beat their Lincoln City counterparts 1-0 at Field Mill with Neil MacKenzie scoring the only goal from the spot.


Latest | April 2009