FLITCROFT, DARREN WAY REACTION
Stags needed killer 'punch,' says boss
mansfieldtown.net, Saturday 12 January 2019
Mansfield were without a killer ‘punch’ in this afternoon’s rare home loss against Yeovil Town, manager David Flitcroft has said.
Glovers’ forward Jordan Green scored the game’s only goal in the first half of a clash that the Stags ended with ten men, following defender Matt Preston’s late sending off.
The manager says that his charges lacked a cutting edge in their performance.
“We lost too many individual battles first half,” he said. “Yeovil have come and pressed us, and once you get past the initial press, it becomes a football fight.
“Yeovil won a higher percentage of balls and dominated us in that [midfield] area of the pitch. It was a really disappointing first half for us.
“We weren’t careful or clinical enough in our play. You have to make sure that you’re executing, and we didn’t.
“Second half we’ve come out, and when you wear the key numbers on your back and you’re a striker, you have to make sure in the key moments that you’re executing.
“It’s not unlucky that we’re hitting someone’s back or missing the target. It’s a lack of responsibility in key moments.
“Mal Benning played with high level of courage today and wanted the ball. That’s the courage and boldness that I want from a team when we’re 1-0 down.
“You’re not always going to make things happen, but [you need to] have that effort and energy to go and try and make something happen.
“I do believe that’s a mindset, never giving up and understanding that you’re in a football match. We didn’t display those qualities, certainly in the first half - there was no real punch to anything we did in that last third.”
The manager called on his players to be courageous in the ‘business end’ of the season, likening reaching January to getting to ‘base camp’ on Mount Everest.
“He [Nathan Baxter, Yeovil goalkeeper] has done well,” added the boss. “But you have to make him work harder when you come up against a wall.
“There are times where it becomes about precision and placement, and make sure you are missing the ‘keeper out.
“We didn’t do that enough. Our crossing wasn’t on point and with shots from the edge of the box, [it] was just a nearly performance.
“You can’t wait for someone else to take the baton. You have to do it yourself in that moment. Those are the performers that will stand out in the business end of the season.
“When you’re climbing Everest, you have to climb to base camp. January is base camp. January is where you get there, assess the mountain, and start climbing it.
“It’s certainly a massive effort where you have to get the details right at this stage of the season. We have to get players out there that enjoy being in those match-winning moments.”
The gaffer added that he was disappointed for the Mansfield faithful following today’s narrow defeat, while also touching on debutant goalkeeper Jordan Smith’s first outing for the amber and blue.
“It [Jordan Smith debut] was okay [considering] he only came in yesterday. We can get on the training ground and do more work.
“It’s really difficult to gage because the conditions didn’t allow us to play it out first half, with the wind swirling down the pitch.
“We’ll look to do something different then, because we have to come up with the answers. I’m desperate to get working with this team Monday and come up with the answers.
“I feel disappointed for the supporters today. They stuck with it and really tried to get us back in the game.
“We didn’t do them justice today. They show courage week-in, week-out, and we have to make sure we show that courage to keep trying to break teams down.”
Lastly, the manager provided an update on the club’s current position in the January transfer window.
“We’ve been very busy speaking to players and speaking to agents,” he explained. “We’ve had two or three weeks now, trying to get things over the line.
“Everyone is assessing their squads and waiting for someone to move. We’ve made sure to locate the right targets, but getting them over the line is always a bit more difficult.
“Once you’ve located a target and sold the club and the project, which we have done, it’s then just a case of waiting and getting it over the line.”
iFollow Stags subscribers can watch the manager’s interview in full by logging into mansfieldtown.net/ifollow later today.
‘We lost too many individual battles,’ reflects David Flitcroft on Mansfield Town’s defeat to Yeovil
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Saturday 12 January 2019
Mansfield Town boss David Flitcroft was left disappointed by his side’s overall display in today’s 1-0 home defeat by struggling Yeovil Town. He cited poor final balls and players shirking responsibility in vital moments as key to the unexpected defeat.
“We lost too many individual battles in the first half,” he said. “Yeovil have come and high-pressed us.
Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/we-lost-too-many-individual-battles-reflects-david-flitcroft-on-mansfield-town-s-defeat-to-yeovil-1-9534085
“We didn’t perform first half. We couldn’t get into second gear and there was no fluidity to what we did. “When we did get the other side of their press we were not careful enough or clinical enough in our play to release Tyler Walker or CJ Hamilton.
“We needed a match-winning pass. It’s a position of responsibility. There was a lack of responsibility and ownership in key moments.”
He added: “In the second half we got on the front foot and completely dominated proceedings, but there was no real punch to anything we did in that last third.
“Their keeper has done well but we should have made him work even harder. It’s about precision and placement.”
Flitcroft gave an immediate debut to on-loan Forest keeper Jordan Smith and said: “Jordan did okay. “He only came in yesterday so we will do more work with him on the training ground. “The conditions didn’t really allow us to play it out first half with the wind howling down the centre of the pitch.” He added: “I feel sorry for the supporters today as they stuck with it and tried to get us back in the game. We didn’t do them justice today.”
Stags now face Crawley Town at home on Tuesday with Flitcroft trying hard to complete some incoming transfers. “We have been very busy speaking to players and agents and we are trying to get things over the line,” he said. “That’s always the difficult bit once you have located the targets and sold the club and the project to them, which we have. “Until the ink is dry on the signature and it’s gone through to the FA and been quantified then there are many deals you think you’ve got over the line but you haven’t. “It’s now about whether those players really want to come and join us for the right reasons.”
Quick chance for Mansfield Town to bounce back against visiting Crawley Town
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS
After suffering two defeats on the bounce, Mansfield Town are delighted to have an immediate chance to bounce back with the visit of Crawley Town tomorrow night (7.45).
“We are glad to have a game this soon,” admitted manager David Flitcroft. “Football does give you that opportunity. Luckily we don’t have to wait a week. “The players know what’s expected. We will bounce back into training today and make sure everyone is lively, enthusiastic and energetic as we plan for Crawley.
“I have told them all to get fixated on Crawley now. “They need to take that frustration and anger they’re feeling and, in a calm and considered manner with a clear vision, set out to put things right that haven’t been right against Crawley.”
After losing twice in as many games after a 17-game unbeaten run was halted, Flitcroft has urged his players to use the defeats as a springboard for their promotion push over the second half of the campaign. “I think it’s really important in life to know that the only way you get better is at times by getting hurt and understanding that life is not easy and football’s not easy. It’s a ruthless business,” he said. “Now is the time to fight and kick on if you want to do anything in the game. If you want to be an also-ran then don’t chose football. It knocks you down like life, but you have to keep fighting.”
Read more at: https://www.chad.co.uk/sport/football/mansfield-town/quick-chance-for-mansfield-town-to-bounce-back-against-visiting-crawley-town-1-9535704
Darren Way Praises Character And Resilience After Victory Over Stags
Yeovil Town manager Darren Way praised his side's character and resilience, after they pulled off a surprise 1-0 victory over promotion chasing Mansfield Town at Field Mill on Saturday afternoon. The Glovers gained their first win in eleven matches, thanks to a 19th minute Jordan Green goal, breaking a winless run that has pushed them down to the wrong end of the table.
The winning goal came after Carl Dickinson provided a crucial pass for Green to convert inside the box for what was Green's fourth goal of the 2018-19 season. Speaking to BBC Somerset after the match, Way felt that his team had worked extremely hard for the win, but praised the club's administration staff for bringing in Chelsea defender Joshua Grant and AFC Bournemouth winger Alex Dobre during the week, to freshen up his squad:
"The players have shown unbelievable character and resilience. We've been talking all week about how you grow stronger in adversity. I feel with the additions that we made, everyone has worked extremely hard behind the scenes, with the secretaries and every member of staff and that goes to all of the effort that they've put in. The front three were the first line of defence in pressing. We forced mistakes and we got that opportunity. I felt from Jordan's runs, we should have had a penalty from the start and we didn't get it. You have to earn that right to make sure you regain control. I thought the players did that throughout."
One of the key performances of the day came from Chelsea goalkeeper Nathan Baxter, who justified his recent return to the side, with a string of second half saves, as Mansfield pushed for the equalising goal. Notably Baxter kept out one Danny Rose chance from close range that will be part of the video highlights for sure, and Way had high praise for the way that the keeper was conducting himself away from the pitch as well:
"He's a great character and he's been talking all week about how he can help the dressing room off the pitch. There's not many 20 year olds that want to take that responsibility. You could see the commitment that every single player put in. But the discipline from that back line, and Nathan Baxter in goal, Josh's (Joshua Grant) debut and what a debut that was, to come to Mansfield, which is not an easy place. I think their record speaks for itself. So every single member of staff, every single player, and all the hard work and all the effort. The supporters were fantastic. It's been a good day for Yeovil Town. We've got to make sure we put that into practice now, with a great home game against Notts County."
Yeovil Town manager Darren Way spoke to local journalist Chris Spittles, in an interview for BBC Somerset, after his side had won 1-0 against Mansfield Town on Saturday 12th January 2019.
CS: Darren, the run we've talked about for far too long is over. What a great win and performance from your side.
DW: The players have shown unbelievable character and resilience. We've been talking all week about how you grow stronger in adversity. I feel with the additions that we made, everyone has worked extremely hard behind the scenes, with the secretaries and every member of staff and that goes to all of the effort that they've put in.
CS: We could see how you tweaked the tactics today, with Tom James sitting in front of the back four. But your wide men, and you spoke about that and their pace in behind. That's what happened with Jordan Green's goal.
DW: Yes, if you look at it, the players will know that the positional play from the wide players against their three. The front three were the first line of defence in pressing. We forced mistakes and we got that opportunity. I felt from Jordan's runs, we should have had a penalty at the start and we didn't get it. You have to earn that right to make sure you regain control. I thought the players did that throughout.
CS: In the first half, you were probably looking towards your attacking players. In the second half, it was very much your defensive players. What an excellent effort from your defenders and your goalkeeper.
DW: Well, you could see the commitment that every single player put in. But the discipline from that back line, and Nathan Baxter in goal, Josh's debut and what a debut that was, to come to Mansfield, which is not an easy place. I think their record speaks for itself. So every single member of staff, every single player, and all the hard work and all the effort. The supporters were fantastic. It's been a good day for Yeovil Town.
CS: One save in particular from Nathan Baxter from Danny Rose - I could hardly believe it on air. We've had some of your fans saying it was the best save they've ever seen.
DW: He's a great character and he's been talking all week about how he can help the dressing room off the pitch. There's not many 20 year olds that want to take that responsibility. As I've said, his performances, and the run that we've been on before, we've got to make sure we put that into practice now, with a great home game against Notts County.
CS: I'll say it for one last time. It was ten games without a win. You've got that win. Just how important is it for everyone at the club?
DW: I think it's important for the players more than anything, because as I've said to you and I'm not going to lie, the environment at YTFC has become a little bit toxic, and that's not a healthy environment. Our dressing room is really good and the relationship that I've got with the players is good. So nothing really was going to upset that. We knew how close we were to a win. But to come here today, I don't think anyone expected us to get anything. But we did, so that's football.
CS: The hard work continues. Notts County lost today so there's a six point buffer above them but there's still a huge game at Huish Park on Saturday.
DW: Every game is big at this level now. Certainly for the opportunity that, and the position that every single football club is putting themselves in, to make sure they stay in the Football League. It's not easy, and it's relentless. The amount of phone calls and the amount of hard work that everyone has put in behind the scenes this week goes unnoticed, and everyone at the football club deserved those three points.
CS: Just finally, it's been a while, but how will you go and celebrate three points on a Saturday night tonight?
DW: I've got to be honest, I know that probably people on the outside, and there was a lot of finger pointing - that's football management. I don't know whether sometimes I should be handling it in the way that I am, or should be feeling more pressure. But the support that I've got around me, even with the likes of (AFC Bournemouth) Eddie Howe phoning me and helping me out. I've had (West Bromwich Albion manager) Darren Moore, and the amount of managers contacting me has been endless. So I know I've got good support from good people, and if you've got that then you'll always get through bad times.
Yeovil Town manager Darren Way spoke to local journalist Chris Spittles, in an interview for BBC Somerset, just before kick-off against Mansfield Town on Saturday 12th January 2019. Yeovil went on to win the match 1-0.
CS: Darren, four changes in all. You give debuts to your two new signings. Tell us about them. I guess the fans will be excited to see them start today.
DW: Well I did say when the window opens up we're going to be bringing in fresh faces. I'm hoping the quality that I've seen from previous matches, and the good advice that we've been given, to bring these players in. I have to thank the clubs, with Eddie Howe and Chelsea for helping us. I'm hoping they'll put in good performances today to help the team get three points.
CS: So let's start with Josh Grant. He'll play at right-back by the looks of things. What do you expect from him?
DW: Josh played against us in the Checkatrade. He's very powerful, and can play left-back, right-back, left-sided centre-half and right-side. So he's very very versatile. I think that it's important that we identify one position for him. If we are low on numbers, he can play elsewhere. He's very attacking-minded. But this intensity and watching him against Peterborough (in the Checkatrade Trophy) it's a different game to what he's used to. It's going to be very aggressive. The ball is going to get whipped into the box, so he is going to have to defend that back post very well. But he's got a good personality and a good character and he knows a lot about us, because of Nathan Baxter.
CS: Alex Dobre will play as a winger for you. He is a winger, so what can fans expect to see from him?
DW: Well I've put Zokes (Francois Zoko) up front today and I'm hoping Zokes can do what DJ (Diallang Jaiyesimi) did. Every time DJ received the ball, he managed to get at the opponents goal straight away, on the half turn. I'm hoping he can bring our wingers into play. Watching Alex, and I've watched Alex now for a number of years, but we haven't been able to get close to him. He's come from being on the bench at Bournemouth last week to now at Yeovil Town. So I think he's taken that very very well. Eddie (Howe) has helped me out on that, as he has with eight players that I think we've had from Bournemouth now. But he's a real exciting prospect, very good in a one-v-one, good positional play. It's going to be a challenge out of possession for him, to make sure that he gets back and doubles up with Dicko (Carl Dickinson) on Hayden White, and to block shots, block crosses and then take them the other way. So he's an exciting player. Let's just hope that he's got that quality in the final third, for what we need right now, to get us that first goal.
CS: We've both seen the Mansfield side. Otis Khan has been out of favour for a good few weeks now, but he's back and starts today. Does that surprise you?
DW: No, it just shows the strength and depth that they've got within the squad. I was counting how many players they've got from their last game, and I think they've got eight or nine from the last game we played against them. Otis has had to be patient, because they've been on a good run of form. But if only Otis was in our team - these players move on, and I wish Otis well, but we should be able to do our job today, and make sure that screen that we've got in front of our back four is good enough and clever enough to take Otis out of the game.
CS: Finally Darren, a new member of your coaching team is here today. Who is he, and what will his role be?
DW: It's Neale Marmon. I've known Neale for a number of years. He's come from a good contact in Steve Foley, who I knew well in Ipswich, who is probably one of my mentors. We've needed an extra pair of hands on the shop floor, with losing Terry Skiverton. So he's come in on the short term, and he's given us some good advice. He's good with the players and it's worked well.
INTERVIEW - Baxter thrilled with Mansfield victory
Young stopper delighted for supporters
Town goalkeeper Nathan Baxter was elated with the win on road at Mansfield Town to repay the supporters' faith in the side.
Jordan Green’s first-half strike was enough to see off the Stags in a 1-0 win and seal the Glovers first of the New Year.
In cold and windy conditions at the One Call Stadium, Town dug in and battled hard to hold on for the win with resolute defending in the second half to end their winless run.
Baxter was also called into action a number of times including a save of the season contender from Danny Rose’s shot from close range after the restart.
Although pleased with his performance, the Chelsea loanee was more pleased with what that win means to the Glovers faithful.
“It was one for the highlights reel at the end of the season that’s for sure,” he told iFollow Glovers. “I’m just delighted for the lads, delighted for the manager and more importantly the supporters because it’s a long journey and they’ve watched some poor performances.
“I was busy in the first-half, I think I made about four or five saves in the first-half, I think the wind played a massive part with gale force winds you’re always going to be under pressure second half.
“They’re a really good side so I'm delighted for everyone as it's been a long time coming. Carlisle away was the last win and I remember that was a similar performance, backs to the wall me making a lot of saves, so it was great that we could grind it out and more importantly get the three points.”
The match saw the January additions of Josh Grant and Alex Dobre thrown straight into the starting XI after signing on Friday.
Having played with Grant at Chelsea, Baxter praised his former Chelsea teammates performance as well as Bournemouth loanee Dobre’s.
“It was a battling performance from everyone in the side, Josh Grant was unbelievable on his debut and Alex Dobre as well. Great stuff.
“The manager trusts young players so it’s a good place to be if you’re playing regularly. It's good that he’s come and a great shift from him.
“It’s good to be back, obviously I had that injury and now back and back to winning ways so hopefully this is the start.”
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