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Lewes manager full of praise for Stags' loanee

16 January 2019

Lewes FC manager Darren Freeman has said that Stags' defender Henri Wilder has an 'abundance of qualities,' following the 19-year-old's recent loan spell with the Rooks.

Wilder was a consistent starter for Lewes during his time on loan, and returned to Mansfield on Monday 31 December.

Reflecting on Wilder's time at the club, Lewes' boss Freeman was full of praise for the defender, who he says became a fans' favourite.

"Henri is such a good lad and is so eager to learn," he said. "He fitted in really well with the boys and I think it was a great experience for him.

"The way he applied himself was very professional and I think that he became a fans’ favourite early on because of his no-nonsense tackling, desire, passion, and willingness to work hard for the team.

"I think his honesty [is his best quality]. Not a lot of people look at that, but that’s a quality I look for in players.

"He’s an honest player, and I think that with his winning mentality, he reminds me of a young Stuart Pearce.

"There aren’t many players like him around anymore. He wore his heart on his sleeve and had a ‘never say die’ attitude. He has an abundance of qualities."

The Rooks' chief went onto explain that Wilder was one of the first names on the teamsheet during his spell with Lewes, and says that the side have missed him since his return to the Stags.

"For someone so young, he came in and it was almost like he knew all the boys straight away," he added.

"He was very well-liked in the dressing room, and he fitted in tremendously well.

"There aren’t many players like him around anymore. He wore his heart on his sleeve and had a ‘never say die’ attitude. He had an abundance of qualities."

Darren Freeman, manager of Lewes FC

"I had no hesitation in putting him in my team; he was one of the first names on the teamsheet because of all of his qualities.

"He allowed other people to do their bits and pieces, so he was definitely always on the teamsheet.

"I think the first game we played [since Wilder’s return to the Stags] we got beat. We hadn’t lost many games with Henri there.

"We definitely miss Henri. He’s got great character. He came and got games and got a bit of experience.

"Henri gained that experience and I think we also got a massive positive from his performances."


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