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Boss: Stags will improve form

26 October 2021

Mansfield Town manager Nigel Clough has called for his side to turn their recent, improving performances into wins as they host Tranmere Rovers at One Call Stadium on Saturday.

The gaffer is aiming to build on the side’s dominant home performance against Port Vale, despite only getting a point.

Despite Stags’ currently enduring an undesirable run of form, the manager remains positive and feels that the team ‘sense a victory is coming’.

“We need a win,” Nigel told iFollow Stags. “I do think that when we get one win we will be away [and embark on a run of form].

“Football is not played on paper, but I think we have an opportunity in the next few weeks to get some points on the board.

“I think the lads sense it is coming and I think the supporters do as well.”

Speaking about potential returns from injury for the weekend, he said: “Elliott Hewitt definitely [has a chance of playing]. I’ve seen him doing well in training, he’s had a good rest over the weekend and we are very hopeful that he will be fit.

“We hope Stephen McLaughlin gets a bit of training in too this week. They [Hewitt and McLaughlin’s injuries] weren’t long-term and McLaughlin wanted to train on Friday but we felt that we couldn’t risk his injury getting worse and it lead to him being out for three to four weeks.”

The manager feels that the squad’s morale has increased in recent weeks after promising displays in the previous two matches.

“We are in better spirits than we were a week ago [after the Northampton game].

“Although we’ve only got the one point from the two games, I think there is a completely different feel about everybody.”

On the likelihood of a potential return this weekend for right-back Kellan Gordon, the manager said: “[It’s] Unlikely. We have a game at Wigan in the Premier League Cup [this Thursday] and if he is okay then he will play 45 minutes in that.”

The gaffer went on to speak of new signing John-Joe O’Toole: “He has only had a couple of light training sessions so we haven’t had enough time to fully assess him. He won’t play at Wigan but there is every chance he will play in the EFL Trophy [at home to Newcastle].”

Tranmere visit One Call stadium having lost their first league game in six outings away at Northampton last week.

The Stags’ boss is fully aware of Rovers’ threats.

“Tranmere have great experience. [Peter] Clarke and [Jay] Spearing are two of the best players in the division and it will be a tough test.”

The manager remains confident, however, that a win is imminent and will lead to a good run of form.

“Yeah, definitely,” he expressed when asked if the Stags can put a good run of form together. “I think we showed that at the start of the season.

“Not just with our victories but against top teams like Bradford and Swindon, I think we competed with both of those sides.

“When a few of the injured players come back, hopefully this weekend with the two full-backs, [Hewitt and McLaughlin] they will improve us.”

Watch the manager’s full interview now by logging onto

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