COBBLERS PREVIEWS / CLEMENTS INJURY LATEST
Clements could return in two months
mansfieldtown.net 19th September 2013
Manager Paul Cox was delighted to learn that midfielder Chris Clements may not be out of action for as long as was initially feared.
Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/clements-could-return-in-two-months-1064742.aspx?#BjUy7fKHw2lh8p5U.99
Clements, who has formed a strong central-midfield partnership with Jamie McGuire in recent weeks, suffered medial ligament (knee) damage in our victory at York City last weekend.
But despite initial fears that he may be out of action for as long as four months, our boss has revealed that is now expected to be much less.
“He’s seen the surgeon and it’s good news,” revealed Cox.
“We’re looking at a maximum of eight weeks to two months. We’ve got an excellent physio in Simon Murphy and he’s getting his head down straight away.”
Our boss also explained the decision as to why the club chose not to appeal the red card that centre-back Martin Riley received in the victory at Bootham Crescent.
Riley was dismissed following an off-the-ball incident with Minstermen substitute Richard Cresswell in the 79th minute of last Saturday’s match.
Cox said: “I don’t think the referee saw the full incident and we also didn’t get the match report (from the officials) until Tuesday, which went against us.
“He (Riley) has been a colossus for us this season and he’s really stepped up to the mark. We’re going to miss him, but as one door closes, another one opens.
“I said prior to the season starting that it’s about how strong your squad is - not in terms of numbers, but in the mentality of players who are waiting in the wings.”
Cox also reflected on our reserve team’s 3-1 victory over Hartlepool United at One Call Stadium last night, which saw us maintain our 100% record in the Central League (East Division).
“It was an excellent win and there were some good performances,” added Cox.
“I sound like a scratched record, but there are a lot of players who are ‘chomping at the bit’ to try and break into the first eleven.
“My priority last night was to make sure that the lads, who are going to be in contention for Saturday, are putting the work ethic in and showing the right mindset.”
Paul Cox's full press conference is now available on Stags Player. To subscribe, click here.
Paul Cox believes Mansfield Town are heading in the right direction
chad.co.uk, by Stephen Thirkill, 19 September 2013
Delighted boss Paul Cox believes Mansfield Town are heading in the right direction on the pitch.
Cox was speaking after watching the club’s reserve side maintain their 100 per cent start in the Central League (East Division) following a 3-1 win at home to Hartlepool.
Goals from Matt Rhead, Ryan Tafazolli and Jake Speight sealed maximum points and gave Cox another selection headache for Saturday’s visit of Northampton.
The Stags youth team also got in on the act after thumping Chesterfield Blues 4-1 on Wednesday.
“It was an excellent win for the reserves and a good performance,” said Cox.
“There are a number of players who are chomping at the bit to get into the first team. It gives me a bit of a selection dilemma for the weekend, but it is a nice problem to have.
“The club is heading in the right direction on the footballing side. Both the reserves and the youth team are playing very well and we just need to keep it going.
“I do not want the club to stand still, we all want to see the club go forward and become known as a winning club and a successful club.”
Stags go into the game against the lowly Cobblers knowing a win could push them into the League Two play-off places.
Mansfield will be without the suspended Martin Riley (three game ban) and Chris Clements who damaged medial ligaments in the 2-1 win at York City.
Winger Lindon Meikle also has a fitness concern after picking up a knock to his hip flexor.
Northampton Town, who were beaten in last year’s play-off final by Bradford, have yet to win away from home this season and are currently without a win in five.
Early criticism helped spur Mansfield Town players on
chad.co.uk, by Stephen Thirkill, 19 September 2013
Criticism after the first two matches of the season has been a key motivational factor in Mansfield Town’s surge up the table, says midfielder Jamie McGuire.
Mansfield slipped to an opening day defeat in the league at Scunthorpe before being dumped out of the Capital One cup by Tranmere just days later.
But since then impressive Stags have gone six games unbeaten, claiming three wins in the process, and are currently eighth in the table.
“After the first two matches of the season people starting asking questions about us,” said McGuire.
“Since then we have stepped up as individuals and as a team and have worked hard to get the results.”
Experienced shot-stopper Alan Marriott added: “There were questions being asked about us after the first two games and whether we were good enough or not for the Football League.
“It was all about getting adjusted to our new surroundings and we have done that. We have got an excellent fighting spirit and six games unbeaten is a good response.
“There is not much of a gap between the Conference and League Two, we are just playing against bigger names.”
Mansfield will be confident of shooting down Northampton on Saturday as they look to extend their unbeaten run to seven matches and mark Paul Cox’s 100th league game in charge with three points.
“This is a great chance to extend our unbeaten run, but it will not be an easy game,” said McGuire.
“Northampton Town are in a false position, they are a good team with a good set of players. We need a quick start to hopefully knock their confidence.
“The league table is looking good for us. We have had a good start to the season and we have just got to try and keep this run going. To do that it is important that we win our home games.
“We have got a strong squad and have got good players who can slot in when we have injuries and suspensions.
The game marks the start of a key period for Stags, who face bitter rivals Chesterfield next weekend before winnable back-to-back home games against Bristol Rovers and Hartlepool.
Chris Clements to miss up to eight weeks after scan gives injury boost to Mansfield Town
chad.co.uk, by Stephen Thirkill, 19 September 2013
Injured midfielder Chris Clements will miss a maximum eight weeks of Mansfield Town’s season.
Stags had feared the influential playmaker may have had to sit out as much as four months of the campaign after he damaged medial ligaments against York City.
But scans this week revealed the injury is not as bad as first feared.
Said Cox: “The news is good for us, we have got an excellent physio in Simon Murphy and Chris will be working hard with him to get fit again.
“He will be a big loss for us and we want him back playing again as soon as possible.
“I am gutted for the player, He has always been honest with me and has been playing well and consistently.
“I always knew we had a player in him and he has come on leaps and bounds since joining the club.
“He is a better play now than when he joined us, and that is great credit to our coaching staff.”
Fellow midfielder Jamie McGuire believes Clements will come back stronger following his injury setback.
“Chris has been playing really well and I feel for him,” he said. “He is a strong character and he will come through it.
“He is a very good player, he finds a pass, he sees a pass, but he always digs in when we need to dig in during a game.”
Mansfield go in to the game on the back of an impressive six game unbeaten run which has seen them climb to eight in the early table.
Aidy Boothroyd’s Northampton have struggled to recapture last season’s form and currently sit 22nd in the table without an away win all season or any wins in their last five games.
Mansfield centre-back Martin Riley misses the game following a three match suspension, while winger Lindon Meikle is also suffering from a knock to his hip flexor.
Marriott expecting tough Cobblers test
Goalkeeper Alan Marriott believes that Northampton Town could be like a ‘wounded beast’ when they arrive at One Call Stadium tomorrow.
Read more at http://www.mansfieldtown.net/news/article/marriott-expecting-tough-cobblers-test-1065908.aspx#8p5rb6YGsjX8jp6C.99
The Cobblers have endured a tough start to the new season and currently find themselves languishing just above the Sky Bet League Two drop zone.
“The league is beginning to take shape, but it’s still early days,” said our shot-stopper.
“There are a few teams that are in false positions given what they have spent, and Northampton are probably one of those.
“They’re going through a transitional period, but they’ve got a good manager, who has managed at a very good level, and a good squad.
“They’ve got Clive Platt upfront, who I’ve played against a few times before, and on his day he is a real handful for any team.”
Marriott added: “Wherever you go, footballers just want to win games. It hurts people when you lose and you take criticism.
“Northampton have taken a bit recently, and you’ve always got to be careful of the ‘wounded beast’ in these situations.”
Now in his 17th season as a professional footballer, Marriott, who celebrated his 35th birthday earlier this month, is the eldest member of our squad.
The veteran custodian believes that there is in an excellent spirit in our current squad, which shone through in our victory at York City last Saturday.
“It was an excellent three points at York,” added Marriott.
“It’s always a tricky place to go and it can be quite an intimidating atmosphere, but it was a great away performance, especially having gone 1-0 down after 50 seconds.
“We’ve got a good grit and determination throughout the whole team, and I think the composure was there to claw our way back into the game.”
AIDY - 'PERFORMANCES WILL BE REWARDED'
18th September 2013
by Gareth Willsher
The Cobblers boss previews the trip to Mansfield Town
THIS MATCH IS ALL TICKET, YOU CANNOT PAY ON ARRIVAL
Read more at http://www.ntfc.co.uk/news/article/ab-premansfielda1314-1059901.aspx?#is3uymjOUHhEjDct.99
Cobblers boss Aidy Boothroyd is confident in the progress his team are making ahead of Saturday’s trip to Mansfield.
“Despite the results and the way the league table looks there is a future in what we are doing,” he said.
“It is a tricky time for us at the moment but it’s about perseverance and we have just got to go through the storm.
“What we need now more than ever is a horrible scruffy win and if we get that then we could easily go on a little run.
“These are the times that you don’t want but that are absolutely necessary in order for you to be successful, you’ve just got to get through it.
“It took us a little while to get going last season but we managed to nick a few results here and there and had we not done that it might have been a different story.
“The main thing for the group of players is to just keep at it and keep working hard and working smart.
“It will turn because it can’t continue and we’ve just got to focus on what we can effect.
“We will get it right and we will get back to where were and go beyond.
“In any sport things can turn round very quickly but I think if you keep doing the same thing over and over expecting to get results then that’s insanity.
“What we are doing as we are going along is just tweaking one or two things. We conceded a goal on Saturday from a corner and for me that is the worst possible thing you can do and we then conceded a goal in the last minute which is the second worst thing.
“We need to learn the lessons from that, stick to our principles but at the same time adapt and improvise depending on the opposition’s strengths and weaknesses.
“We’ve had a real spectrum of highs and lows since I’ve been here and what I’ve tried to do through all that is to remain level headed.
“That’s all history and we are on a longer road now. I think we’ve improved the squad but now it’s about gelling the squad together and getting everybody fit.
“Mansfield are a strong outfit, it’s going to be a battle and we have got to deal with that. It is going to be about focus and we’ve got to defend resolutely while giving them some problems to deal with from our own armoury.
“It is going to be a tough game there is no doubt about that but I’m really excited about this one because I’m going to get a really good look at us under the microscope.”
Northampton Town boss Aidy Boothroyd expecting physical battle against Mansfield Town
chad.co.uk, by Stephen Thirkill, 18 September 2013
Northampton Town boss Aidy Boothroyd says he is expecting a tough physical battle against Mansfield Town on Saturday.
The Cobblers travel to the One Call Stadium looking to derail Mansfield’s six game unbeaten streak and earn their first away win in the process.
Northampton have struggled to find their feet this season after they were beaten 3-0 by Bradford City in last year’s play-off final.
But Boothroyd says Saturday’s trip to Mansfield is the perfect chance to show people what they can do.
“I’m really excited about this game because it will give me the opportunity to look at the players under a microscope,” he said.
“It is going to be about focus and it is going to be a tough game, there is no doubt about that.
“It would have been a lot easier for us to keep players if we’d won at Wembley because then you’re on a roll and you’re a team that is moving forward.
“We obviously would have still had to change a few things but when a team comes up they have a bit of momentum.
“The players subconsciously lift their levels and they go again whereas sometimes if you don’t have as good a season as you wanted, you come back for pre-season and you almost know at some point that there’s going to be a lull.
“That’s sometimes why it is important to change a team around as well as maintaining what you’ve done.”
Stags will be without Chris Clements, who is facing two to four months on the sidelines after injuring his medial ligaments in the 2-1 win at York City.
They could also be without central defender Martin Riley who was shown a red card in the same match.
But, whichever side Paul Cox puts out for his 100th league game at the helm, Boothroyd knows his side face strong opposition.
“They’ve got a lot of momentum from their promotion and they are a big, strong team,” he said. “They are a physical outfit who will cause us a lot of problems.
“But I said to the players in training this week ‘what better game could you wish for at this moment?’
“We’re away from home and we’re going to go there knowing we’ll get roughed up. We’ve got to stand up and deal with it.
“Anything that comes in we have to make sure we defend it resolutely and we also have to make sure we cause them some problems as well and show them what we’ve got in our armoury.”
Collins believes it’s all about composure as Cobblers head to Mansfield
by Jefferson Lake
18 September 2013
Cobblers defender Lee Collins believes the ability to play with composure will be the key to victory at Mansfield Town on Saturday.
Town head to Field Mill having lost seven of their nine games so far this season and with the team in 22nd in Sky Bet League Two.
The match, against a Stags side with the momentum that newly-promoted teams generally have and who are unbeaten in their past six games, is a difficult assignment for Northampton, who improved against Exeter City last weekend but still came away empty-handed.
But Collins is confident the recent progress can be maintained at Mansfield.
“Mansfield are a very physical, in-your-face kind of team,” he said.
“But if we stay composed and play the way we can then I don’t see why we can’t win there.
“There is pressure on you whether you’re at home or away, and I personally tend to treat games the same no matter where they are.
“We have a bit of a hoodoo away from home at the moment and we know that’s something we need to turn around.”
Collins and the rest of the Town squad received a psychological boost this week in the form of some healthy plaudits from Exeter manager Paul Tisdale.
Tisdale described Northampton as ‘phenomenal’ and the best team his side had faced this season - comforting words for Collins and co but ultimately meaningless when stacked against the scorelines.
“Their (Exeter’s) gaffer hit the nail on the end and it was encouraging to hear him say that we’re the best side they have played,” he said.
“But the stats don’t lie, it’s another defeat on our record and we are disappointed with that.”
Latest | September 2013