As Mansfield Town problems mount, boss Nigel Clough orders current defence to up their game

Mansfield Town could be missing defender James Perch for some time with his head injury and have now seen loanee Will Forrester suffer a setback in his fitness battle.

By John Lomas
Tuesday, 14th September 2021, 2:08 pm
James Perch - seeing a specialist today but nowhere near a return as yet.
James Perch - seeing a specialist today but nowhere near a return as yet.

So boss Nigel Clough has ordered his current struggling defence to up their games and simply do their jobs properly after five defeats in a row.

Perch has been sidelined after a worrying bang to the head in training and Clough said: “He is seeing a specialist in Birmingham today, so we hope to know a bit more - but there is now way he will be available for Saturday.

“No matter what, we will not be taking any chances with him until someone gives us the go-ahead.

“You cannot take a risk with a head injury no matter how many games we lose him for. There are more important things and a player's welfare is one of them.

“He will get the best care possible. He is frustrated already as he feels fine, but we are in other people's hands with this.”

On Forrester, he added: “Will has had a setback last week. He was training – he hasn't joined in yet – and he slipped while doing some work.

“So it will probably be another couple of weeks before we get to see him.

“The good news just keeps coming. It's pouring at the moment! Every little thing it seems is going against us on and off the pitch, but we've go to deal with it.

“The ones who are playing, whether it's Elliott Hewitt, Richard Nartey or Faz Rawson, they have to do better than they have done to keep goals out, That's the bottom line.

“The responsibility lies with them and it's difficult when it's down to individual errors.

“I asked Elliott Hewitt what was wrong with him first half at Walsall and he said he's had a bad 45 minutes. He said he would have brought himself off at half-time which is lovely honesty.

“Yes, we are missing James Perch, yes, we've not got Will Forester, yes, we missed out on three or four in the transfer window, but the ones who are playing have to do better.”

He added: “It is glaringly obvious to everyone the problems we have and what we need to do to try to fix them.

“But when you are missing a few players and things are going against you, we need everyone on Saturday – including the crowd – to stick with us.

“Our form is not that bad in terms of the way we are playing, it's the goals we are giving away.”