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Match Discussion: Game 38 - The Bluebirds (A)

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Game 38 - The Bluebirds (A)

Team: Barrow AFC

Date: 07/03/2020

Where: Holker Street



What line-up should Neal Ardley opt for? What will be the key areas for the Magpies to get a victory? What do you think the final score will be?

Have your say below, join in with the Pride of Nottingham match discussion.

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Notts are 16 points behind Barrow with a game in hand. To have any chance of catching them, Notts have to win this game. This has the potential to be a goal fest. Barrow score for fun, Notts aren't exactly goal shy. I'll go for 3-2 to Notts. 

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I want to see Notts perform better, getting a better result than they did in the home game. Once Barrow scored it seemed game over, thought Notts had looked lively until that point but this game needs to be different.

What are your thoughts @chipmunx?

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The chances of catching them are slim to none. We need to win to keep play off hopes alive, though this game alone won't determine that

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I'd like Notts just to focus on reaching as high as possible, yet I wouldn't add the pressure of chasing the top play. I honestly feel it's something unnecessary and, very unlikely to happen. Right now we need to build a gap to protect our playoff space, so a win would help massively.

I expect Barrow to be a lot more relaxed at home.

They pushed and forced play a lot at Meadow Lane, I don't expect them to keep that persistent attitude. I think they'll look to counter and stretch Notts at the back, obviously they are aware that the aerial aspect of our game isn't the best.

It should be quite open, I feel more confident about getting something from the game.

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i think the last time we played them we did okay until they scored, i just think the players need to defend more bravely and cut out those minor mistakes. block crosses, press when they try to get near goal.

just play like they did but use our quality, they are a good team.

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Zero chance of catching Barrow unless they majorly ***k up.

I would rather focus on where we are and get the team focused towards picking whatever points we can, it's important that we end this season off well. If this means missing out on the playoffs, I'm happy provided the players fight.

I want to see that attitude against Barrow, that desire to pick up a win.

The defeat left a bitter taste and I am hoping we can just put that right. Fair play to Barrow, they deserved it but it was just those antics. That needs to be our team talk, the players need to reward the travelling fans.

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I can see a close draw like 1-1 happening, I think they'll be more defensive with Cal Roberts. I'm sure they'll do their homework, we need to do ours!

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If Notts can build momentum on the back-to-back wins I would feel confident, they will probably like they did last time. It's for Notts to be up for the game, wanting to continue the forward momentum.

A good performance is a must.

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As others have said, we won't catch them now whatever Saturday's result. That ship has sailed. But a top three finish isn't out of the question, and that would give us a big advantage in the play-offs - finish third and we'll have a one-legged semi-final at home against a team that played just three days earlier. Third place is just four points away, so it's an achievable goal.

Barrow are top for a reason and anything we get there will be a bonus. If we're aggressive and take the game to them instead of just reacting all the time we might just bring some points back with us.

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Do I see an easy 3 points? No, I thought that last time and look what happened.

Barrow are top of the league for a good reason.

They work hard as a team and play for each other, Notts are still in a form of transition and our performances are all over the place. I'd feel more confident with Sam Slocombe and Alex Lacey back into the squad. I do feel we have improved since we last played them and are better equipped in some key areas.  

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19 hours ago, TheSkipper said:

I want to see Notts perform better, getting a better result than they did in the home game. Once Barrow scored it seemed game over, thought Notts had looked lively until that point but this game needs to be different.

What are your thoughts @chipmunx?

My thoughts are that it will probably be our hardest game left at home. We havn't lost a home game since our early bad form where we had 7 points from the 1st 9 games. We have not dropped a point at home since boxing day. There will probably be 4000 there - so our biggest gate so far this season.

Despite what some on this thread think Barrow will play exactly the same way as we did in the away game;- press high and go for goals - we have 3 players now on 10+ league goals. Realistically I don't think Notts can win the title, but should be aiming for 4th, 5th as a minimum as that gives you a home match in the 1st play off game, however my current projections have Notts finishing in 6th on 71 points behind Us (89), Harrogate (83),  Halifax (76), Boreham Wood and Yeovil (73), with Barnet sneaking in 7th place on 70 points.

The last 3 home games have had horrendous high winds - there were 60 mph gusts in the 2nd half against Dagenham last week, but the winds expected to be a relatively low 15/16mph this week. Notts fans not in the stand will be on an uncovered terrace (there's a roof going over it in the summer) so bring your thermals - and i'm not even joking there - it most likely will be baltic...

My prediction - a hard game with Barrow winning by an odd goal.

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I was expecting Barrow to hit a bit of a sticky patch but as yet it hasn’t happened, hopefully Notts can be the start of their poor run and we can hit some great form.

I have a feeling Mcrory and Lacey will be back in for Saturday but the gaffer is keeping that under his hat.

would love to predict a win but can’t see it realistically.

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Id be happy with anything thats a win tbh but more goals for us would be even better.

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We must learn from what went wrong in the November game against them.

Firstly, press them. Disrupt their flow as much as possible. Speed up our passing and improve our decision making in the final third. Our best outlet was the ball over the top of their defence with Wes Thomas. 

Don't get on the wrong side of the referee and don't give away unnecessary fouls otherwise we won't get anything. 

Get Adam Long on Dior Angus as Long is quick. One of the issues at ML was Angus' pace against Turner.  

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Gutted with that result - could and should have been out of sight by half time. Rooney hit the inside of the right post with the penalty after sending the keeper the wrong way, then the outside of the left post with a free kick, and Angus skewed one wide. Should really have been 3 up.

2nd half started pretty much the same, Dan Jones had a 30 yarder well saved by the keeper, then came the sending off which changed the game. Definite red and Quigley out for 3 games, then Crawford does what he did for Chester and scores against us, a scrappy goal defensively that the keeper probably should have saved. Notts played well against 10 men and Roberts got a good goal from a narrow angle. As per usual in this league the ref had a shocker.

Before the game we could afford to lose one match, now we can't - but we'll still be top whatever happens with the Harrogate game later.

Quigley will be a miss and i'm guessing we'll bring in the Welsh U-21 international striker we signed midweek against his home town club Wrexham next week

 

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Fantastic win, but can't help but feel we played into their hands in the first half by being too defensive 

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Its good to pick up a win like this on the road, it comes as a surprise but we do have a good side. It just takes a bit to get it out, think the sending off changed everything but still feel the points would have been ours.

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Confidence must be coming now to the squad after the brief wobble, typical for a season chasing the playoffs but this is a big win. Barrow are clearly a good side who will be disappointed to lose at home, I can't see them slipping up at all.

Cal Roberts having scored now, will feel up for anything and could be the icing on the cake for him.

Putting him top made a lot of sense I feel.

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Credit to Barrow first and foremost, they did incredibly well to make it very difficult especially in the first half.

I think some of the changes in the second half made some difference, but I think it could have been a vastly different story if we changed some things. If the penalty that Rooney missed had gone in, I'm not sure Notts would have found a way back into the game. Likewise, the sending off ended up being a massive decision which change the game more than Neal Ardley's tactics did.

I'm not sure why some are going on about the lineup having won the match, the fact we had more space and Barrow ended up tiring seemed to make the difference.

As did the loss of a key player upfront which ultimately would have changed their tactics.

I mean, I take nothing away from the victory - it's a good win on the road. I'm buzzing that we are looking good and, in contention for finishing quite high again. 3rd is very possible and, quite likely the highest the club could finish realistically. It would take a miracle for us to win the league, this isn't in my mind - I'll take each game as they come.

Quote

Notts are winning due to Barrow being stupid and, getting a player sent off. I do feel Ardley wanted to inject strength in the second half in order to rest players but why the commentary keeps pinning to the lineup before kick off is beyond me. It's a good lead though. #COYP

I tweeted this after the first goal, due to Charlie Slater and Leigh Curtis banging on about how Neal Ardley changed the game with his lineup and tactical changes. Before the sending off, Barrow sounded quite happy to defend all day long.

This seems to have rubbed off onto our fan base and, has gone to some people's heads in my mind.

All six changes are a result of the fixture backlog, it's more a case of resting players ahead of the weekend. A brave decision, but did it win Notts the game? No. Like I say, Barrow had their chances and should have led comfortably before the second half had even kicked off. So, I think there's a level of fortune and luck involved. It's great Tom Crawford stepped up, a player some keep writing off and it goes to show that if he's playing well - goals will come.

The team takes credit for the win, with small falling towards Ardley and of course the support.

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8 hours ago, Chris said:

Credit to Barrow first and foremost, they did incredibly well to make it very difficult especially in the first half.

I think some of the changes in the second half made some difference, but I think it could have been a vastly different story if we changed some things. If the penalty that Rooney missed had gone in, I'm not sure Notts would have found a way back into the game. Likewise, the sending off ended up being a massive decision which change the game more than Neal Ardley's tactics did.

I'm not sure why some are going on about the lineup having won the match, the fact we had more space and Barrow ended up tiring seemed to make the difference.

As did the loss of a key player upfront which ultimately would have changed their tactics.

I mean, I take nothing away from the victory - it's a good win on the road. I'm buzzing that we are looking good and, in contention for finishing quite high again. 3rd is very possible and, quite likely the highest the club could finish realistically. It would take a miracle for us to win the league, this isn't in my mind - I'll take each game as they come.

I tweeted this after the first goal, due to Charlie Slater and Leigh Curtis banging on about how Neal Ardley changed the game with his lineup and tactical changes. Before the sending off, Barrow sounded quite happy to defend all day long.

This seems to have rubbed off onto our fan base and, has gone to some people's heads in my mind.

All six changes are a result of the fixture backlog, it's more a case of resting players ahead of the weekend. A brave decision, but did it win Notts the game? No. Like I say, Barrow had their chances and should have led comfortably before the second half had even kicked off. So, I think there's a level of fortune and luck involved. It's great Tom Crawford stepped up, a player some keep writing off and it goes to show that if he's playing well - goals will come.

The team takes credit for the win, with small falling towards Ardley and of course the support.

Think that's a bit unfair to be honest, he is managing the squad, making changes, that's his job. Everyone, including me, is quick to jump on him when we are not winning, I think it's only fair we give him some credit when he changes things and they work. Yes a lot of it is down to the players on the pitch, but they are taking instructions from the manager, all teams do. Credit where it is due. Just my opinion. 

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3 hours ago, DonnyNotts said:

Think that's a bit unfair to be honest, he is managing the squad, making changes, that's his job. Everyone, including me, is quick to jump on him when we are not winning, I think it's only fair we give him some credit when he changes things and they work. Yes a lot of it is down to the players on the pitch, but they are taking instructions from the manager, all teams do. Credit where it is due. Just my opinion. 

I'd agree. I think the way Neil has managed the squad has been nothing short of remarkable. He has a large squad that needs keeping happy and more importantly, refreshed. We have had a lot of injuries so it's good he has the faith in the whole squad to come in and keep the momentum going. Great win yesterday, due imo, to the change of ends at half time. First half was a 'Shut up shop' job. If the penalty had gone in, who knows what would have happened? But it didn't and second half we sounded up for it, using the wind to our advantage. Yes, a sending off always helps, but it can also hinder when the opposition become more compact and the siege mentality sets in.

The team has had its ups and downs. The up is coming at the right time with the schedule we've got coming up until the end of the season.

Hands down, the best manager we've had for a while. Uses his brain and his squad.

My main criticism would be his praise for the opposition all the time. Then again, this may well be managing expectations of an unruly crowd of supporters who are known to call for a managers head on a very, very regular basis!

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