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Cox determined to end on a high

1 May 2014

Manager Paul Cox is determined to see Mansfield Town end the season on a high by achieving a good result in this Saturday’s away match at Bristol Rovers.

Our team travel to the Memorial Stadium on the back of two straight defeats in Sky Bet League Two, which has seen us slump to 13th position in the table.

We face a tough challenge to achieve a victory over the Pirates, because Darrell Clarke’s men still need a point to be certain of avoiding relegation to the Conference Premier.

A near-capacity crowd is also expected for the match.

“It’s a long time in the close-season when you finish the season badly, so I think we owe it to ourselves, the supporters and the football club in general to finish on a good note,” said Cox.

“We’ve got to play our part. We’ve got to be honourable to everybody in the league, but more so to ourselves.

“We’re going to have a look at training and have a look at who is still hungry to finish the season and put players in on Saturday that want to be successful.”

He added: “I know we’ve got a lot of supporters who are going down, I think the ground will be pretty full at Bristol, and we don’t want to go down there and not turn up.

Meanwhile, Cox has revealed that right-back Liam Marsden, who impressed on his debut against Torquay United last weekend, and young midfielder Jack Thomas will be in the squad for this match.

One player who could also return to the starting line-up for us is on loan full-back Darryl Westlake, who missed the 3-1 defeat to the Gulls due to a hamstring injury.

However, centre-back Ryan Tafazolli will miss out due to a hip injury.

“He (Darryl Westlake) wasn’t 100% for the last game, but hopefully he’s recovered in time and we can put him in,” said Cox.

“(Liam Marsden) did well [against Torquay] and I was really chuffed for him. It’s a scenario now where we’ve given him [and] ‘Thommo’ (Jack Thomas) a little taste and I think there’s more to come.

“Both of them will be part of the squad on Saturday. Whether they’ll be starting, on the bench, or travelling, we’ll have a look and see who is fit and raring to go.”

Regarding the injury to Tafazolli, our boss added: “[Ryan] is out and we’ve had one or two disruptions with injuries, but we’ve got adequate cover there so it shouldn’t be any problem.”

In other news, Cox has confirmed that he would be interested in signing out-of-contract striker Liam Hearn.

He said: "Anybody that scores one [goal in two games] at any level of football is someone that I'm interested in. 

"He's had a fabulous career, but a couple of injuries of late, but I'm always interested in good players and Liam fits into that category."

A full interview with Paul Cox is available to watch on Stags Player. To subscribe, click here.

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