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INTERVIEW: Mansfield is a big test says Coley

Unbeaten Stags next up at the Wham Stadium

7 September 2023


INTERVIEW: Mansfield is a big test says Coley

Unbeaten Stags next up at the Wham Stadium

7 September 2023

John Coleman knows it will be a big test for his Accrington Stanley side when they take on fellow promotion chasers Mansfield Town this weekend.

The Stags are currently unbeaten in League Two, sitting one place above the Reds in seventh place.

Nigel Clough’s side missed out on the Play-Offs last season by one goal and will be aiming to go one step further this campaign.

Clough has made eight additions over the summer with Davis Keillor-Dunn their top scorer on five goals so far.

With the international break, there is more focus on the lower leagues this weekend.

"League Two will take centre stage this weekend which is good," said Coleman. "Mansfield have got experienced players, a strong squad, spent a couple of quid which is good to see in our league.

"They have recruited well and they are unbeaten, so it will be tough but we know we can get it right.

"Since the Gillingham game on the opening day of the season, I have been impressed with our steady improvement, forget the results, more about our playing style and hopefully we will continue that this weekend.

"Our home form cost us last year, we didn’t get our home form or our style of play right.

"But on Tuesday, in the EFL Trophy game against Carlisle, we took the game to them especially kicking towards our fans.

"They are the 12th man, they suck the ball into the net, and we want to give them more days where it’s all-action."

The Reds boss has been pleased with Norwich loan defender Brad Hills who has won a number of Man of the Match awards already.

"He has impressed, his character is good he is a fans’ favourite already.

"You feel as though he has been here for five years as he has integrated quickly. He has got that will to win.

"He has still got to improve in certain aspects of his game but on the evidence of so far, his career is on the up."

Coleman will monitor Jay Rich-Baghuelou – the defender has missed the last couple of games following his return to action after a season out with injury.

But there is good news in that Joe Pritchard has returned to full contact training.

"A lot will depend on how Jay Rich trains over the next few day and it’s a big day as Joe Pritchard has come back training with the first team, full contact, which is a boost.

"It will be like a new signing, like Jay Rich was at the start of the season.

"Everyone knows Joe’s talent and hopefully going forward he can be injury free. He definitely will be a difference with the ability he has got.

"It’s a new dawn for him, he has had a couple of these now. He has a spark and I know his hunger. He went through a lot of turmoil last season and I am looking forward to him getting back in the team.

"Lewis Shipley will also be back triaining next week so things don’t look as gloomy as a couple of weeks ago when we had a mini glut of injuries and you think 'here we go again.'"

Sean McConville remains sidelined with an ankle injury.

The full pre-match interview video with John Coleman is available to watch on the club's official YouTube channel, CLICK HERE to find out more!

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