EVANS AND HAMILTON REACTION TO STOCKSBRIDGE GAME
Players obtain first full pre-season match
mansfieldtown.net, 18 July 2017
Stags' boss Steve Evans says tonight's pre-season friendly against Stocksbridge Park Steels was 'invaluable' as nine members of his first team squad completed 90 minutes.
A brace in either half from striker Danny Rose and winger CJ Hamilton ensured Stags recorded a dominant victory over the Evo-Stik outfit.
And speaking post-match, the gaffer higlighted the importance of nine players completing a full match for the first time.
"I think it was excellent for us. More importantly, we got 90 minutes into nine players and that was invaluable," the boss said.
"We only really took Jimmy [Spencer] off and young Jack [Thomas] off to get the other lads some time because they've prepared to play today so that was good. The other guys have trained before it and hopefully we've come through [unscathed].
"It's a good place to come in pre-season, the big Sheffield clubs come for a reason because you get a little test and it's quite physical. It's a big pitch and we've got a lot of pluses tonight."
The players who weren't involved in tonight's fixture took part in a training session prior to kick-off and the gaffer reiterated his desire to rotate his squad in the remaining friendlies.
"We're going to chop and change it over the four games. I addressed the guys on Monday and said to them they'll be coming to Stocksbridge and of course Middlesbrough and down to Stamford and against Forest it'll different players playing in different games."
Despite admitting that he expected Stags to dominant their non-league opponents, the former Leeds United manager highlighted a number of individual performances for praise.
"[David] Mirfin was like a lighthouse in the dark ocean and Jacob Mellis with his passing was Championship class.
"[CJ] Hamilton goes and gets two goals, Alfie Potter's come back in great condition and produced a superb performance but we expect it.
"When you go down the levels, you expect a dominant performance; we dominated the ball, we kept a clean sheet and we worked incredibly hard and they'll be tired tomorrow. It doesn't matter who you play when you work as hard as that."
Trialist Jordan Slew came on as a second half substitute during this evening's game and the gaffer explained that a decision will be made on his future after the weekend's games.
"With all due respect to Jordan, he's missed a little chance at the end but so has Rosie (Danny Rose), so has Jimmy [Spencer] and so has Alfie, we missed a lot of chances tonight but he brings something that we've not got but whether that'll be enough, we'll decide by probably Monday morning.
"We'll make a decision in fairness to him because he's got other offers from clubs in our league and a couple from above but he lives 25 minutes from our stadium - it's a good move for him but whether it's a good move for us, we'll decide on Monday."
Supporters will be able to watch the manager's full post-match interview on iFollow Stags shortly.
Winger elated with maiden Stags' brace
mansfieldtown.net, 18 July 2017
Fleet-footed winger CJ Hamilton has expressed his delight at scoring his first Mansfield Town goals in tonight's 4-0 pre-season victory over Stocksbridge Park Steels.
The 22-year-old scored a second half brace at the Look Local Stadium to add to striker Danny Rose's two first half strikes as nine Stags' players completed their first 90 minutes of the pre-season campaign.
And Hamilton's double capped off an excellent personal display against the Steels, during which he was a constant menace to the opposition defence.
The winger said: "It was good personally for me. Obviously getting a good 90 minutes under my belt in pre-season is always good and scoring two goals is a bit of an extra!
"It's the first time I've scored in a while [and they were] both right foot as well, which I am surprised at!
"The first one, Rosie's (Danny Rose) gone to go round the 'keeper, the 'keeper's stopped it, I've clipped it over him and finished it and the second one, I've touched it past the player and put it through the 'keeper's legs."
The former Sheffield United wide-man, however, admits he could have added to his goal tally in South Yorkshire this evening.
"The first half one where it came across the box, I should've scored that one and there were a couple of others where I could've [taken a shot] myself instead of trying to cross it."
Hamilton believes the business completed by manager Steve Evans in the transfer window has increased the standard in the dressing room and he says there is now competition for places in every position.
"All the boys have come back in unbelievable condition and we've been getting through the work that the gaffer's been putting us through and that's helping us more and more.
"We're getting stronger, we're getting fitter and we're going to be looking good next season.
"There's some very good technical players in there. The standard this year's gone up another level, there's competition in every position so everyone's got to fight for their place on the team so it's the standard will keep rising and rising throughout the season."
Supporters will be able to view CJ Hamilton's post-match interview on iFollow Stags later tonight.
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