Ravenhill aiming to turn round Mansfield’s season

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Midfield ace Ricky Ravenhill was instrumental last season in helping a Northampton side adrift at the bottom pull off the great escape from relegation.

So, with Stags struggling at the midway point of this season, Mansfield Town’s experienced new signing is hopeful of not only helping make the club safe, but pushing on from there.

“It is another part of my career and this is a good club,” said Ravenhill. “I am really looking forward to getting started and playing and I hope I can help move us up the league.

“I was initially contacted a couple of weeks ago but there were a few things to sort out.

“I am glad we got everything over the line and I am now here as a Mansfield Town player.

“I have played at Mansfield a number of times and I have always enjoyed playing here. The fans are great and there is good potential.

“With everything the gaffer has said to me, I can see the club moving forward pretty quickly. Now I just want to get on with my job on the pitch.”

Can Stags still retain outside hopes of a play-off push?

“Never say never,” said Ravenhill. “There is still half a season to play. Let’s get into the top half of the table first, get points on the board, then we can reassess it. We must make sure we are looking up and not down.

“I have a hunger for it still. I still want to play and win games. I have six months here and I have to do my job and prove myself to the gaffer.

“I have played against him a lot of times and I have a lot of respect for him as a player. Now he is moving into management and, by the way he says he wants to do things, I am sure he will have a good career as a manager.”

He added: “I have very briefly met the other players and said hello. But it will be my first training session with them this morning (Thursday).

“At a new club you feel all sorts of emotions, mostly excitement. I can’t wait to get going. Starting out with new people is enjoyable and something to look forward to.

“At some point we have probably all kicked each other and said a few things to each other. We all know how it works. Now we are here as a team together and we will be doing the same to other people.

“There are some really good young players here and I hope, with my experience, I can help get them to the next level.”

The former Notts County star, now at his ninth club, said his favourite season was with Bradford City in 2012/13.

“I’ll never forget my year at Bradford,” he said. “We reached the Coca Cola Cup final, playing teams like Arsenal and Villa along the way, then went back to Wembley a few weeks later and got promoted.”

Ravenhill, who has tasted promotion four times in his career, has lost none of his ambition and enjoyed helping Northampton to safety last season.

“At Northampton we were in Hartlepool’s situation - a long way adrift - but we managed to turn it round and it felt like a promotion come the end of the season,” he said.

“I thought I’d done well at Northampton. But things didn’t materialise for me this season and I was in and out. I wanted to be playing regularly and the Northampton gaffer did help get this deal done for me.

“I’ve seen it many times. One minute you are in favour, then someone comes in and things change round. You just have to get your head down, do your best, and if you have to move on then you have to.

“I am still Doncaster-based so this is great geographically for me. It doesn’t take long to get here which is ideal for my family as well.”

Ravenhill is likely to make a debut in tomorrow’s tough trip to second-placed Burton Albion.

“It is going to be a very tricky game,” he said. “They are a really good team and that’s why they are where they are in the league. They have really kicked on since the new manager was put in place.

“But there is no reason we can’t go there and get something out of it.”