Stags' injury worries ahead of Torquay trip

Mansfield Town's treatment room was worryingly full this morning ahead of Saturday's game at Torquay United (3pm).

The Stags squad will be travelling down to Devon tomorrow and training halfway down.

But manager Peter Shirtliff's preparations have been hampered by new knocks suffered by several players in Tuesday's disappointing 2-0 defeat at Hartlepool United.

Central defenders Jake Buxton (foot) and Alex John-Baptiste (ribs), along with midfielder Stephen Dawson (calf), are all new worries while skipper Richie Barker, already playing with five stitches in head wound, suffered another bang to the head as well as a foot injury.

Fellow striker Simon Brown is still on crutches with the dead leg suffered last Saturday and defenders Gareth Jelleyman (knee) and Jon Olav Hjelde (groin) are still struggling.

Shirtliff is already fielding a side with eight players aged 21 and under.

"We just have to get on with it," he said. "I am hopeful most of them will be all right to play.

"Most of them are contact injuries from Tuesday. We will just have to tread lightly in training and see who is available to travel.

"The bottom line at Hartlepool was that we were not resilient enough. Hartlepool are a good side with a decent squad of players that have played at a higher level.

"They had more experience throughout the team than us. But if you are going to progress in life then that is the sort of place you have to go and get a result.

"I was disappointed with some of my players and now I am looking for a reaction from them at Torquay.

"I know there are a lot of young players. But they have got to grow up quickly - it's a hard world.

"They can't keep using it as an excuse. With our wage bill it is inevitably young players we can afford.

"Torquay have made a good start and it will be a difficult game for us. Ian Atkins has picked them up and we know they will be hard to beat.

"We have to improve on Tuesday's performance. We never got behind Hartlepool or penetrated them. There was no determination to get to the back of them and consequently we were shooting from 20-25 yards all the time."