New era begins as Stags return for pre-season

Mansfield Town's Manager Steve Evans - Pic Chris Holloway
Mansfield Town's Manager Steve Evans - Pic Chris Holloway

Mansfield Town’s new-look squad return for pre-season training in the morning (Thursday) as the start of a new era begins to take shape.

The squad will assemble at Nottingham University for two days of fitness testing to see how well players have summered.

“I am very much looking forward to it,” said boss Steve Evans.

“The banter will be flying and the dressing room will take ascendency in terms of the characters and the lads who have just come in quietly getting on with their business.

“We are very fortunate to be able to go to a local specialist facility for two days of complete testing which will be controlled by our fitness coach Lee Taylor.

“Saturday morning we’ll be into the One Call Stadium for some football work and then we’ll give them a day with their families before we depart for Malta on Monday.”

Evans continued: “I have a sign in the dressing room that I have had at all my clubs that says if you are failing to prepare then you are preparing to fail. It’s as simple as that.”

Like the players, the manager can’t wait to get the footballs out and start playing.

“They have been given plans,” he said. “We have a mechanism that means the boys are telling us every day they have done their work by certain times.

“If they have done their work then it will be very evident tomorrow and will mean we have less intense work to do and more enjoyable work.

“We all want to get the footballs out and get the systems of play into place and let these players express themselves.”

He added: “Dare I say it, you don’t want to be signings the likes of Digby, Atkinson, Anderson and Mellis and people like that if you’re not going to let them express themselves.

“What we’ve done is bring good horses to the water. Let them drink. But they need to be prepared to drink in an orderly fashion.”