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Interviews

Hill talks preparations for Mansfield away fixture

18 November 2021

First team manager Keith Hill has spoken about preparations for Saturday's League Two away game against Mansfield Town.

United head to the One Call Stadium looking to build on the performance and result against Salford City last weekend, where they drew 1-1.

Hill told iFollow Iron: "We've had a lot of intensity in the training and the players have certainly adapted to the messages and the way I want to train. Obviously there's got to be a continuation of learning, developing as a group and forming the identity that I'm trying to create.

"The next two days moves onto the matchday preparation but there's got to be an element of fitness in there as well, so the way we train has to reflect the way we want to play.

"We have to respect the opponent, but again I'm trying to focus as much as I can and as quickly as I can on the way we want to play."

Mansfield head into the match having won their last four games in all competitions, and Hill is aware it will be a tough test against Nigel Clough's men.

He added: "A couple of weeks ago, (Port Vale manager) Darrell Clarke said he expected Mansfield to be promotion contenders and if you look at the squad and the recent results that's a true reflection of their capabilities.

"We're going there as probable underdogs but are going to go there with a fighter's chance. We're going to be organised and ready for the opponents, and trying to show that identity which I keep speaking about and is important so that we can go to places like Mansfield and pick up three points."

Over 350 Iron fans have bought tickets for the match so far, and with pay on the day available there too, even more are expected to snap up tickets as United go looking for their first away win of the season.

Hill continued: "The supporters are the heartbeat of every football club and we're trying to create an identity that represents those supporters and that they can buy into, understand and appreciate. The appreciation will certainly be fed back to them by the players and the staff. We're working on their behalf and whether it's 2,000 who turn up or 20 every single one of those fans is equally important."

The boss concluded with congratulations to the Iron's Under-18s side, who booked an FA Youth Cup third round trip to Manchester United with a hard-fought 1-0 home win over Guiseley on Tuesday night.

He said: "I'm really pleased for them and spoke with Dawsy (academy manager Tony Daws) yesterday. I felt they played really well and created a good impression. I'm really pleased they're playing against Manchester United in the next round, becoming the underdog. It's always difficult when playing against teams like Guiseley, who I thought were an excellent side.

"It was a close game but our players showed tremendous determination, fight and desire to get through, and they had that little bit of extra quality to see it out in the end. I'm pleased for Dawsy, the coaching staff and the players themselves."

See much more from Keith Hill and Hayden Hackney on iFollow Iron.


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