'I need to play games' - Leeds United youngster Conor Shaughnessy leaves Elland Road to join Mansfield Town on loan

Conor Shaughnessy has joined Mansfield Town on loan (Pic: Mansfield Town)
Conor Shaughnessy has joined Mansfield Town on loan (Pic: Mansfield Town)
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Leeds United defender Conor Shaughnessy sees Mansfield Town as the perfect place to get the first team football he needs.

The Irishman will spend the rest of the 2019/20 campaign with the League Two outfit, managed by John Dempster.

At 23, he believes he needs to be playing regularly.

"This is an important stage of my career and feels like the right move for me," he said.

"I need to play games, get experience under my belt and I think this is the perfect place for me to do that.

"I’m heading into this loan move with a real positive mindset, hoping to make the most of it and looking to play as many games as possible."

Shaughnessy said it was an 'easy decision' to join Mansfield who in recent seasons have made no secret of their ambition to become a League One club.

“This is a club which is looking to move in the right direction," he said.

"I’ve had a really good conversation with the manager, who has told me about where he sees me fitting in, our style of play, and it all added up to make this an easy decision to join."

Mansfield have struggled so far this season but have had injury issues, with nine first team players out.

Dempster said last week he wanted two or three new faces, specifically targeting a centre-half who can also operate in midfield, making Shaughnessy an ideal addition.

Mansfield also signed West Ham striker Dapo Afolayan on loan last week.

Shaughnessy, 23, became a Leeds player in 2016 and made his senior debut in the first game of the 2017/18 season at Bolton.

Although he played once in the EFL Cup for the Whites last season, he was substituted at half-time in that game against Preston and hasn't played for Marcelo Bielsa since.

Scottish Premier League side Hearts took him on loan last season and he hasn't been part of Bielsa's plans this summer.

His contract at Elland Road runs until 2021.