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Archived News from January 2017

19th January 2017 21:32

English Football League - Sky Bet League Two
Notts County 0 - 0 Mansfield Town
Attendance: 11,328 (3,485 from Mansfield)

Date: 14 January 2017

Martin Shaw and Jeff Barnes at Meadow Lane

Mansfield Town drew 0-0 at Notts County this afternoon in a disappointing and slightly frustrating game. Notts County had lost 10 games on the trot but had a new owner and a new manager this week which had given the club a massive lift,and by all accounts this performance was a big improvement on what they have been serving up. Mansfield created the best chances of the game with Ben Whiteman’s deflected shot looping over the keeper Adam Collin and forcing a tremendous save as the keeper clawed the ball away from behind him, Rhys Bennett then heading wide from the resulting corner. Then Yoann Arquin missed a sitter from close range early in the second half, somehow poking wide from debutant Hayden’s White perfect cross. And in stoppage time, CJ Hamilton forced his way into the area and drew a save from keeper Collin and the ball ricocheted around without falling to a Stags shirt. Notts County really only came close once when O’Connor cut inside from the left and his on-target shot was deflected just wide of the right post. Stags keeper Jake Kean did not have a save to make and kept his fourth clean sheet in 4 games. The Stags defence looked pretty solid throughout, with new loan signing Hayden White impressing at right back, and skipper Lee Collins immaculate in front of the back four. Ben Whiteman had a good game on the right of midfield though faded a bit as the game went on. But ultimately the Stags came away feeling disappointed not to have done enough to win the game. Notts County will be pleased with the spirit shown under the new manager and got a rousing reception from their fans at the end of the game. Cheltenham’s win later in the afternoon however sent Notts into the relegation zone. The Stags end the day still 6 points outside the play-offs.

The Stags were backed by a fantastic following of 3,485, Mansfield’s largest away following for 10 years since the game here at Meadow Lane in March 2007 when Mansfield brought 4,047 fans, also for a 0-0 draw.

Mansfield made one change from the side that played the last league game, against Crewe 7 days ago, with Hayden White coming in for his debut in place of the injured Kyle Howkins. White slotted in at right back, with Rhys Bennett moving to centre half. So no room in the starting XI for Hoban and Baxendale, the heroes from Tuesday’s Checkatrade Trophy win over Oldham. And Chris Clements and Mitch Rose missed out from the 18 man squad. White, Pearce and Arquin were playing against their former club.

Notts County were taken over by local businessman Alan Hardy during the week and he immediately appointed Kevin Nolan as manager. Notts County had lost 10 games on the trot but you always expect a positive impact from the appointment of a new manager, and that’s what happened today.

It was a beautiful sunny day in Nottingham. A crackling atmosphere as the game started.



MATCH REPORT: Notts County 0 Mansfield Town 0
chad.co.uk, by JOHN LOMAS, Saturday 14 January 2017

The big local derby ended all square today as Mansfield Town came away from struggling neighbours Notts County with a 0-0 draw.

In a white hot atmosphere, it was a tight, tense affair with few real chances, Stags keeper Jake Kean not having a save to make.

Mansfield came closest to a winner. In the first half Ben Whiteman saw a deflected effort almost loop in, keeper Adam Collin doing well to push it away.

Yoann Arquin then missed the best chance of the game when he sidefooted wide at the far post on 51 minutes.

Read more at: http://www.hucknalldispatch.co.uk/sport/football/match-report-notts-county-0-mansfield-town-0-1-8334866

But, with this being such a big day for Notts after their takeover, Stags at least spoiled the party by preventing Notts from winning, though the Magpies did end their club record run of 10 defeats on the trot.

The Stags back four were outstanding as they went a fourth game without conceding and have now not let in a goal for 373 minutes of football.

New boy Hayden White slotted in superbly at right back and central defence pair Krystian Pearce and Rhys Bennett were magnificent.

Mansfield boss Steve Evans made four changes. Kyle Howkins missed out with a knee injury which meant an immediate debut for on loan Peterborough right back White.

Midfielders Joel Byrom and Ben Whiteman, who were both cup tied in midweek, and striker Matt Green all came back into the starting XI with Chris Clements, James Baxendale and two-goal hero Pat Hoban left out from the side that beat Oldham 2-0 in the Checkatrade Trophy on Tuesday.

Baxendale and Hoban were both on the bench, but Clements found himself completely out of the 18.

Notts were looking to end a miserable run in their first game under new owner Alan Hardy and new manager Kevin Nolan.

The afternoon began with a minute’s applause for the late Graham Taylor.

The noise was deafening as the match kicked off with both sets of fans in full cry.

After an early Notts raid ended with a shot that clipped a team mate for a goalkick, Stags went forward and Benning headed just over only to see an offside flag anyway.

Soon after Arquin won the ball well on the left, despite being on the floor, and got up to get in a near post cross that Collin had to grab.

Bennett came up with a timely clearance as Campbell chased the ball into the box as Notts began to enjoy a little momentum.

But Stags won the game’s first corner on 22 minutes, Byrom floated it over and Bennett nodded wide at the far post.

On 32 minutes Collin had work to do in the home goal as Whiteman dribbled into the box and saw his lifted finish take a deflection and threaten to drop in, the keeper clawing away for a corner. From that Bennett again got there, but again missed the target with his header.

Notts won a corner four minutes after the restart, taken short, which saw O’Connor cut across and make space for a vicious shot that hit a defender and sailed wide for a corner. On 51 minutes Arquin missed a great chance to break the deadlock.

White’s tenacity won him the ball on the right by-line and his low cross found Hamilton at the far post, but he was unable to guide his finish on target.

Stags continued to press and Green had a shot charged down on a breakaway, then Hamilton was wide with a bundled 25-yard shot from a half-cleared Byrom free kick.

It took Notts 68 minutes to get a real shot away, Tootle too high from the edge of the box.

O’Connor pulled another 20 yard shot wide on 73 minutes.

Stags made a double change up front with 15 minutes to go with Green and Arquin replaced by Danny Rose and Hoban.

As play resumed O’Connor curled a free kick well over from a decent position outside the box.

O’Connor finally saw the game’s first yellow card, which he should have had much earlier, for a trip on Rose that halted a Stags breakaway seven minutes from time.

With three minutes to go Baxendale took over from Byrom in the Stags’ midfield.

Duffy sliced down Hamilton in the first of four added minutes to earn a yellow card.

NOTTS: Collins, Tootle, Dickinson, Duffy, O’Connor, Forte, Milsom, Thompson, Campbell (Smith 90), Stead, Audel. Subs not used: Loach, Hollis, Snijders, Hewitt, Osborne, Aborah.

STAGS: Kean, White, Pearce, Bennett, Benning, Whiteman, Byrom (Baxendale 87), Whiteman, Hamilton, Green (Hoban 75), Arquin (D. Rose 75). Subs not used: Shearer, Thomas, Hemmings, McGuire.

REFEREE: Darren Bond of Lancashire.

ATTENDANCE: 11,328 (3,485 away).



Notts County kick-off new era with derby draw in front of biggest Meadow Lane crowd of season
By Leigh_Curtis, January 14, 2017, nottinghampost.com

Notts County began their new era under owner Alan Hardy and manager Kevin Nolan with a solid 0-0 derby draw against Mansfield Town.

In front of a crowd of more than 11,000 at Meadow Lane, chances were few and far between as the Magpies put an end to a sequence of 10 straight league defeats.

And what was an added bonus, the goal-less draw meant Notts had kept their first clean sheet since October.

Read more at http://www.nottinghampost.com/notts-county-kick-off-new-era-with-derby-draw-in-front-of-biggest-meadow-lane-crowd-of-season/story-30057880-detail/story.html#MD4lGJVsejyjKdKd.99

There were moments that was at risk, however, especially in the second half when Yoann Arquin, playing against his old club, volleyed wide with the goal at his mercy.

Notts had their moments with Michael O'Connor seeing a shot deflected wide of the post, having worked a short corner with Curtis Thompson.

The performance will have certainly encouraged new manager Nolan, who enjoyed a fine ovation ahead of kick-off as he was introduced to the fans.

All eyes were on his line-up and he deployed a 4-2-3-1 formation designed to give Notts extra security at the back.

Mansfield boss Steve Evans, who was overseeing his first Nottinghamshire derby, deployed a 4-1-3-2 system that saw Lee Collins play in front of the back-four.

The opening stages of the game were certainly cagey with both sides trying to earn the right to play.

Notts began to edge into Mansfield territory midway through the first half which saw Adam Campbell being unable to control a low cross by Jonathan Forte.

At the other end, Rhys Bennett climbed highest to meet a corner kick only to direct his header wide of the post.

As the game began to move towards half-time, however, Mansfield began to make their presence felt.

Adam Collin was required to make a wonderful save to deny Ben Whiteman whose shot at goal took a deflection and looked to be looping in, until the goalkeeper's intervention.

From the following corner, Bennett, who posed a real threat from set-pieces, powered a header wide in what represented an extremely good chance.

Notts would have been encouraged by how solid they were in the first half and it was a question of whether they could maintain that level of performance.

They came out after the break with purpose which saw them work a clever short corner which led to O'Connor's shot being deflected just wide.

But all that progress was nearly undone when a mistake by Forte let in Matt Green whose cross picked out Arquin at the back post.

It looked a certain goal but incredibly he somehow volleyed wide with the goal at his mercy.

The game was beginning to open up and after shot from Mal Benning deflected wide, Notts produced a superb move which found Thompson in space, but he couldn't deliver a killer blow.

There was plenty of intent from Nolan's side who saw O'Connor bend a free-kick wide of the post while Matt Tootle skied well over the bar.

Both sides tried to find a winner, but couldn't find that decisive breakthrough.

Read more: Alan Hardy never offered Harry Redknapp Notts County manager job

Notts: Collin, Tootle, Audel, Duffy, Dickinson, O'Connor, Milsom, Forte, Campbell (Smith 89), Thompson, Stead. Subs not used: Loach, Hollis, Snijders, Hewitt, Osborne, Aborah.

Mansfield: Kean, Bennett, Benning, Collins, Pearce, Green (Hoban 75), White, Arquin (Rose 75), Hamilton, Byrom (Baxendale 86), Whiteman. Unused subs: Shearer, Thomas, Hemmings, McGuire.

Attendance: 11,328 (3,485 away)


Kevin Nolan makes instant headway but Notts County must rise from the foot
A vital point and rare clean sheet may have felt like a victory of sorts at Meadow Lane, but with a new broom in the boardroom sweeping in hope, their fledgling manager will need fortune to favour expectations
Jeremy Alexander at Meadow Lane
Monday 16 January 2017

Kevin Nolan, appointed on Thursday, was all but anointed on Saturday. Notts County’s manager had arrived at Meadow Lane the day after Alan Hardy’s takeover from Ray Trew was completed and their first game in charge was the lunchtime derby at home to the Stags of Mansfield. After 10 successive league defeats County were the ones in a rut and the goalless draw was a triumph, their first clean sheet since October.

Two hours later Cheltenham’s defeat of Accrington Stanley sent the world’s oldest football league club below the relegation line in League Two but Nolan had seen reassurance enough to justify his pre-match excitement. “I’m really happy that I’m here,” he had said, “and can’t wait to sink my teeth into it.” Afterwards he was “delighted” with the team against a side who had won their previous three games. “We competed from start to finish. I had a chance to work with the players for an hour on Friday and it seems they took it all on board. It proved we are good enough to get results and start climbing the table.”

It helped perhaps to have Alan Smith, a former team-mate at Newcastle, as assistant. He had taken charge for one match after Trew completed his reign by sacking John Sheridan. Trew got through 11 managers in seven cheerless years, one of them, Shaun Derry, still appearing on Soccerbase as a County player despite managing Cambridge since November 2015. Smith, still playing, and Nolan, available when Hardy clears the debts which have led to a transfer embargo, suggest tough organisation on and off the field. On Saturday the captain, Michael O’Connor, and Rob Milsom gave the back four, in which Richard Duffy stood out, a security that has evidently been lacking.

Hardy, locally born and a County fan, is well known in the city and has declared higher ambitions. Founder of a thriving office fit-out company and owner of Nottinghamshire Golf and Country Club, he said: “There is no reason why we can’t be as big as Forest.” At the present rate of striking Forest, who also drew goallessly, may meet them half way; they remain in hands their fans would rather they were out of. The city’s two clubs were last in the same division, the second tier, in 1994.

The new owner’s entrepreneurial instinct and identity with fans offered free pies on Saturday to the first 2,000 to turn up. Eventually 11,328 did, including Mansfield’s 3,485 - a season’s best by 3,316 without challenging the record set by Jehovah’s Witnesses.

Hardy has stated as a priority “finding an area we can call our own training ground and academy. That is one of the key deliverables to unlock the success,” he said. On the field the key deliverables were elusive. Just after half-time a corner taken short led to a shot from O’Connor that took only a slight deflection and flew narrowly wide. But that was as close as they went, for all the scampering of Adam Campbell and wide possibilities of Jonathan Forte. The leggy, long-suffering Jon Stead got little protection from two well-armed stranglers at centre-back no doubt aware of his sparkling unpicking of Chelsea in the FA Cup two years ago with Bradford City. He has 10 goals this season.

Mansfield, probably most settled of the county’s three league clubs over the past few years, were hardly more creative in a game where commitment left little room for quality. In the first half Ben Whiteman’s shot squirted in an unexpected loop that had Adam Collin back-pedalling to tip away. In the second a rare indecision in County’s defence admitted a cross that Yoann Arquin poked impossibly wide of a gaping goal. But the occasion always seemed more about County, who hold a league record for relegations (16) and promotions (13) and cannot afford another of the former before one of the latter. Last year they enjoyed only three home league wins.

Nolan’s first foray into management, a year ago at Leyton Orient, fell foul of another duff owner. Saturday was not easy. The minute’s applause for Graham Taylor was a reminder of absolute decency in and out of the dugout and Nolan, acknowledging later “a brilliant reception with hairs rising on the back of his neck”, apologised for being “a bit emotional” without mentioning his grandfather, too, had just died.

The Stags’ Steve Evans, charmless as ever, could not have struck a starker contrast until the fourth official called the referee to intervene. It was a disgrace to Taylor’s name. But after Collin’s last-minute reflex save to divert a deflection the majority left smiling. The mood at last was too good to be Trew.



Martin Shaw @shawma1
@guardian_sport The reference to Evans and Taylor is cheap reporting. Perhaps you should stick to the Premier Lg if it's the best you can do

Mark England @alonelyincubus
@shawma1 @guardian_sport Talk about a tap-in for a totally unwarranted, and distasteful, dig at Evans. Pathetic reporting.



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