Mansfield Town star Chris Clements looks set for injury lay-off

Chris Clements.
Chris Clements.

Mansfield Town look set to lose midfield ace Chris Clements with a groin strain, but boss Adam Murray is more than happy with the potential replacements.

Clements limped off the field in Saturday’s 1-0 defeat at Luton Town and was still limping as he arrived for treatment at the One Call Stadium today.

“He is being assessed as we speak, but it’s not looking great,” admitted Murray.

“So we will see how the next 24 hours goes and what the physios say. But we knew this was always going to be the case.

“When you have a small squad and you get injuries and suspensions, we knew we’d have to deal with it and we will.

“Our recruitment enabled us to sign players that can play in various positions and do good jobs there, so we will have a look at it and move on in a positive vein.

“Jack (Thomas) came on last Saturday and was superb. He gave us a different dimension to what Clem does. He brought a little more out of Chappie (Adam Chapman).

“Sometimes when Chappie and Clem play together they both want to do the same thing, which is good. But at the same time another combination can bring different strengths.

“I will be disappointed if we do lose Clem but it opens the door for someone else.”

Last season’s player of the year, teen star Jack Thomas, will be hoping to be in pole position to replace Clements after spending much of this season on the bench.

“That’s credit to the standard of the group, which has gone up so Jack has had to raise his game, which he has done,” said Murray.

“He has been super in training and probably been a bit unlucky not to get his call earlier.

“But we’ve got Mitch Rose that can play in there and do an exceptional job and we’ve not seen Jamie McGuire yet, and we all know what Jamie brings to the table.

“So we have people who can step in there and do the job. It’s not a major worry.”

Also missing Saturday’s visit of Plymouth Argyle will be skipper and right back Nicky Hunt, after picking up his fifth booking of the season.

However, Murray said: “Again we have people that can step into the mould. We’ve got Lee Collins, Liam Marsden, Mitch Rose – all equally as good.

“You look at someone like Mitch Rose going in there - I foresee his position eventually seeing him ending up there as he is attacking-minded, physical and has good distribution.

“Then you’ve someone like Lee Collins who to add to your back line, ups you again as he has organisational skills, he’s a great defender and we knew before we signed him he can play left back, right back or centre half. We’ve got a number of options there. Nicky will be a big miss – but it’s only for one game.”

Chris Beardsley missed out on last weekend’s squad with a slight shin injury and Murray said: “He will only be a week to 10 days. Best case scenario we will have him back for Saturday which we are hoping for.”