Hot Forest prospect Jack Blake is new midfield target for Stags manager Paul Cox

Mansfield Town manager Paul Cox  -Pic by:Richard Parkes
Mansfield Town manager Paul Cox -Pic by:Richard Parkes

Nottingham Forest’s hot teenage midfield prospect Jack Blake is Mansfield Town manager Paul Cox’s new loan target ahead of Saturday’s arduous trip to Torquay United.

Cox said today that he will not be pursuing his interest in ex-Coventry City central midfielder Steve Jennings, who was sent off while on trial in the reserves in midweek.

But, needing a spark of creativity in the middle, he now sees the 19-year-old, who has won international caps for Scotland U19s, as a possible solution.

“I would like to think we can get something done there,” said Cox. “I have spoken to Forest and we’ll have to see what happens.

“Jack is a very good young player and tremendous on the ball. At this moment, though, nothing is finalised.”

Cox admitted his side were missing the injured Chris Clements in that role, and he was delighted to see Clements back running this week.

Steve Jennings was rumoured to be coming in to bridge that gap, but Cox said today: “He has been in training with us this week, but I don’t think we will be following that one up.”

Another player in the frame for a game at Torquay, should Blake not sign, is Godfrey Poku.

The former Luton Town player has failed to win a first team place since signing a two-year deal in the summer of 2012, but was on the bench last weekend.

“Godfrey’s performance in the reserves at Hull was once again excellent,” said Cox. “He is also doing well in training, though we are still looking to strengthen that position.

“Godfrey is pushing and working hard. The door is still open for him. Last season it was Luke Jones who came in from the cold. I will never turn my back on anyone if they want to play for this football club and want to do well.”

Paul Black and Ryan Tafazolli both picked up knocks in the reserves’ 2-1 defeat at Hull and will not be involved in the squad for the weekend.

But Jamie McGuire is back from suspension and almost certain to go straight back into the team.

“We will train and then head down to Torquay on Friday so we can relax,” he said. “It is a long way. But Torquay and Plymouth have to make journeys like this every other week so there are no excuses on our part.”