Passionate Mansfield Town boss Adam Murray wants his players to 'get into Notts County' in Friday night's local derby at Meadow Lane.Speaking at a Thursday morning news conference, the Stags' chief paid huge respect to the Magpies and predicted them as front runners for promotion.
His new-look squad make the short journey to Nottingham this Friday (7.45pm kick-off), with Murray expecting a 'huge test', but one in which he wants his players to set the tempo.
“It’s going to be a great test for us going in to that environment against a good team but make no bones about it, we’re a very good team ourselves and we’re not going there to make the numbers up," said Adam Murray.
“We’re not going there to watch Notts County, we’re going there to make it a thunderous environment. We want a tempo, we’re going to get in to them and they’re going to know they're in a game.
“I’d rather have these tough challenges and these big games at the start of the season because you learn the most from them.”
When asked about team news, Murray said that striker Matt Green missed last night’s 4-1 defeat to Sheffield Wednesday with a knock, and is rated as 50-50 ahead of Friday's encounter in Nottingham.
“We’re being careful with Matt [Green], he might be [out injured for] a week, he might be [out for] ten days, he might be ready for Friday but he wasn’t worth the risk last night [at Sheffield Wednesday].
“He’s had a good start to the season and a good pre-season so if it takes a week or ten days [to recover] but we get him for 44 games then that’s better.”
After being spotted wearing a protective boot earlier in the week, Murray confirmed that defender Lee Collins is wearing it only as a precaution, after the former Northampton player missed the first two games of the season.
“It [the boot] speeds up recovery time as it takes a lot of pressure off the injury. We’re getting the bruising and the swelling down at the minute and as soon as that’s done and Lee’s pain-free, then he’ll be back in.
“He's a big player for us, he's a massive player for us, he's a leader, he gives us that solidness in the centre of defence and he can play.”
Following the news that Adi Yussuf had been called up to play for his country, Tanzania, the Gaffer was pleased for the young forward, but also wary of allowing him to miss too much club football. Murray explained: “These things are nice honours to have but in the blood, guts and thunder of it all, we’ve got games of football to win.
“I’ll have a conversation with Adi, we’ll sit down and see what his views are but we want Adi Yussuf in our squad. He’s somebody who has missed a big part of pre-season so we need to get him up to pace, we know he’s got goals in him."
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