Ryan Sweeney ‘excited’ to make Mansfield Town move permanent

Ryan Sweeney. (Photo by James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images)
Ryan Sweeney. (Photo by James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images)

Irish U21 international defender Ryan Sweeney said he was excited to commit himself to Mansfield Town Football Club for the next two and a half years.

Sweeney made his loan move from Stoke City permanent yesterday and said he had really enjoyed working under David Flitcroft and Ben Futcher and had also settled nicely into the area.

The 21-year-old has already helped keep 12 clean sheets in his 23 appearances and on making the loan permanent, he said: “The gaffer put it to me the back end of last month and I was really interested.

“Working with him and Futch day in, day out I feel as though I’m improving, especially in the way he has us set up.

“We’re solid at the back so it’s something I was really, really excited about and I was buzzing when it was done today.

“I think it’s all down to the environment the gaffer has us in.

“I’ve said before it’s an easy side to come into – everyone knows their roles and responsibilities on the pitch – so it’s one of them where I try to give 100 percent every game.

“I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my time – and I’m really excited about the prospect of the next two-and-a-half years here.”

He continued: “When I came in I knew the gaffer has assembled a really good side to challenge at the right end of the table. We are sitting in a good position and we’ve set it up nicely for the back end of the season.

“You always want more and want to keep pushing and striving to be the best you can.

“Another thing that attracted me to the football club was that I have settled in really well in the area. I am delighted to be here. I’ve really enjoyed my time under this management.”

Sweeney played his part in an enthralling 1-1 draw away at promotion rivals Forest Green Rovers last night and said: “We knew that they were a good side because we had done our homework on them and they’ve been on a good run of form.

“The boys dug in really well second half, and when games aren’t going your way you have to try your best, which I thought we did tonight.

“We spoke about setting traps yesterday and they left themselves exposed to our forward players who have good pace.

“That was the game plan that worked well first half. “They changed it a little second half and we struggled to get to grips with it a little bit, but that’ll happen.

“You can’t dominate every game, but we dug in to take a point.”

He added: “I thought our shape was really good without the ball, and Mellis and Bishop were getting in really good positions in front of us.

“Nicking the ball back meant we looked good on the counter attack. We’ve hit the woodwork twice and scored a great goal – it was a great finish by (Jorge) Granty.

“We knew second half they would have a response because they’re a good side, especially at home, and they scored a good goal after bombarding us.

“But we come to these places where the conditions are tricky and we’ll take a well-earned point and move on to Saturday.”