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Notts County have stopped the rot with their first League Two victory since October as they claimed a 3-2 win against Tranmere Rovers in Saturday's clash at a freezing Meadow Lane.
Jon Stead gave Neal Ardley the perfect start in his maiden Magpies home game in charge as, on 33 minutes he was on hand to finish off great work from Kane Hemmings and Dan Jones, who rolled the ball across the face of goal for his veteran colleague to tap home at the back post.
However, the Birkenheaders were level just five minutes later as Jonny Smith marauded down the right-hand side before drifting into the box to curl a low shot beyond Notts keeper Ross Fitzsimons.
Just before the break, Stead was once again involved as he won the ball in Tranmere's penalty area to swing a cross into the path of Kane Hemmings for a first-time finish and the restoration of the lead.
So it stood at half time but once again, the ugly head that is County's farcical defending popped up yet again as Rovers equalised for the second time in the match when Connor Jennings made his way into the area to nod home a cross from the right, the Notts defence bamboozled.
Luckily, Stead provided yet another crucial moment as Nathan Thomas was felled by Mark Ellis' clumsy challenge and the veteran forward stepped up to take the penalty, making no mistake to hammer home from 12 yards.
Here is what Pride of Nottingham vlogger ARLukomski had to say on the game:
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PON_News
Notts County have successfully stopped the rot with their first League Two victory since October as they withstood being twice pegged back to win 3-2 against Tranmere Rovers in Saturday's clash at a freezing Meadow Lane.
Jon Stead gave Neal Ardley the perfect start in his maiden Magpies home game in charge as, on 33 minutes he was on hand to finish off great work from Kane Hemmings and Dan Jones, who rolled the ball across the face of goal for his veteran colleague to tap home at the back post.
However, the Birkenheaders were level just five minutes later as Jonny Smith marauded down the right-hand side before drifting into the box to curl a low shot beyond Notts keeper Ross Fitzsimons.
Just before the break, Stead was once again involved as he won the ball in Tranmere's penalty area to swing a cross into the path of Kane Hemmings for a first-time finish and the restoration of the lead.
So it stood at half time but once again, the ugly head that is County's farcical defending popped up yet again as Rovers equalised for the second time in the match when Connor Jennings made his way into the area to nod home a cross from the right, the Notts defence bamboozled.
Luckily, Stead provided yet another crucial moment as Nathan Thomas was felled by Mark Ellis' clumsy challenge and the veteran forward stepped up to take the penalty, making no mistake to hammer home from 12 yards.
Share your thoughts about the match on Pride of Nottingham by signing up to the website, visiting the forum and joining in the chat with hundreds of fellow Notts County fans.
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PON_News
This afternoon, Notts County will be hoping to stop the rot as they welcome Birkenhead boys Tranmere Rovers to Meadow Lane in League Two.
Neal Ardley, who takes the Magpies reins at the San Sirrel for the first time, will seek to end a run of nine games without a win and drag his side out of trouble.
Tranmere will be a tricky proposition though, as they're currently seventh in the table.
However, their recent away form is poor - they'lost three consecutive away League Two games conceding 11 goals in total.
Could this prove a boon for Notts as they seek to condemn Rovers to a fourth successive away loss in the Football League since 2015?
In this week's PONcast Extra, the lads preview the fixture - ahead of kickoff, give us a listen and let us know your thoughts on the episode and the game!
 
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PON_News
Notts have met Tranmere 43 times in their history.
Notts wins: 17
Draw: 8
Tranmere wins: 18
Both sides last met in the 2013-14 season, with Notts winning 2-0 at Meadow Lane, with Tranmere winning 3-2 at Prenton Park.
Since the 1990’s, this fixture has never had one dominant team, with neither team winning more than two in a row against the other.
Stats
Notts are winless in their last 9 league games but showed some signs of improvement in the first half against Mansfield last Saturday, before another second-half no show.
Tranmere’s away form has been their achilles heel this season, with them winning only 2 of their 10 away games (drawing 4 and losing 4). They have lost their last two away games, conceding eight.
Top scorer James Norwood has scored 7 in his last 6 games.
Seasons in each division
First Division (or Prem): 0
Second Division (or Champ): 11
Third Division (or League 1): 58
Fourth Division (or League 2): 18
Non-league: 3
History
Tranmere have only had 26 managers in their history, which is less than what Notts have had since mid-1989 when Neil Warnock took charge.
When Dave Russell became manager in 1962, he changed the kits from blue to white.
Tranmere visited Wembley twice in the early 90’s for back-to-back Leyland DAF Trophy finals. They won the first against Bristol Rovers 2-1 in 1990 but lost the 1991 final 3-2 to Birmingham City.
Famous Irish international and Tranmere legend, John Aldridge, is the only Rovers player to score at a World Cup.
Team News
Matt Tootle returned to training for Notts this week but is not yet match fit, so it is unlikely he will start.
Jon Stead and Kane Hemmings made appearances last Saturday for Notts and will be in contention to start against Tranmere.
Ben Hall and Enzio Boldewijn will be out long-term after both picked up injuries a few weeks ago.
Tranmere will be without Ollie Banks, Sheffield United loanee Harvey Gilmour and Larnell Cole. Gilmour has 3 goals in 12 appearances whilst Banks has 3 assists from midfield.
Winger Dylan Mottley-Henry has returned to Barnsley to undergo treatment on an injury and will miss Saturday’s game.
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PON_News
Hello and welcome to Episode 50 of the Pride of Nottingham PONcast!
Yes, we've made it to a half-century! And not out either, not by a long stretch... 😁
In this week's episode, brought to you by Chris and Sam, we talk about Notts County's recent game against Mansfield Town away at Field Mill.
We also discuss how David Vaughan and Nathan Thomas played in the last game.
We talk about the speculation that Kevin Nolan was coming back as Notts County's manager before Neal Ardley was appointed.
Also, we share our thoughts on the players wages, the appointment of academy manager Dave Regis and the lack of delegations amongst the coaching staff.
All this and more only in Episode 50 not out of the Pride of Nottingham PONcast!
Share your thoughts about this PONcast on Pride of Nottingham by signing up to the website, visiting the forum and joining in the chat with hundreds of fellow Notts County fans.
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PON_News
Kevin Nolan has suggested that he spoke to Alan Hardy about a potential return to Notts County in the past few weeks but "it never got to dotting the i's or crossing the t's".
The former midfielder was sacked by the Magpies and replaced by Harry Kewell, who was himself let go after 14 games.
Neal Ardley then came on board at Meadow Lane in November after he had parted ways with AFC Wimbledon by mutual consent.
The Wombles have since hired Wally Downes, and Nolan says the job was not right for him after moving his family up to Nottingham in the summer while still in charge at Meadow Lane.
Nolan told the Times: "I had to be honest with them. It would have been tough. I would have been a long, long time away from my family again and it would have taken a lot of hours to get it where it needed to be."
He described the news of his sacking by Notts County owner and chairman Alan Hardy as a "slap in the face" but, after Kewell was sacked, Nolan said they "had a chat".
"That was it," he said. "At no time in my eyes was it an interview and I didn't go and see him because I wanted the job back.
"I don't think I needed to sell myself. People can probably read between the lines, but it never got to dotting the i's or crossing the t's."
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PON_News
Another weekend, another crushing disappointment in the long line of crushing disappointments.
Notts County, already woefully trundling along in this season's League Two campaign, were tasked with going to big rivals Mansfield Town in the hope of getting some points.
They did perform well enough in the first half, to be fair, but bad defending proved the Magpies' downfall as Mal Benning lofted the ball to the far post from the left and CJ Hamilton turned home.
The goalscorer then rattled the Notts crossbar early after the restart as the Stags began the second half on the front foot.
Eventually, Hamilton doubled the lead on 63 minutes, making a mockery of the visitors' defence - including a Cruyff turn in their box - to fire home low from 10 yards after Mellis had fed him from the right.
Here is ARLukomski's take on the match in his latest vlog video:
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PON_News
Sigh...
Pretty much everything that could have gone wrong for Notts County in the first half of this season has gone wrong.
You can add defeat in the Nottinghamshire derby to that as Mansfield Town ran out 2-0 winners against the Magpies at Field Mill in Neal Ardley's League Two debut for his new side.
In all fairness, the stats do favour the Stags (58% possession, 17 shots, 7 on target) but aside from possession (42%), Notts didn't seem to have done too badly themselves on that front (10 shots, 5 on target, 4 corners).
But once again it's that old chestnut of poor defending that saw Mansfield get themselves on the scoresheet and claim three points and bragging rights (once again).
The first half was a fairly exciting affair, with both sides trading blows, but it was the hosts who drew first blood on 37 minutes as Mal Benning lofted the ball to the far post from the left and CJ Hamilton turned home.
The goalscorer then rattled the Notts crossbar early after the restart as the Stags began the second half on the front foot.
Eventually, Hamilton doubled the lead on 63 minutes, making a mockery of the visitors' defence - including a Cruyff turn in their box - to fire home low from 10 yards after Mellis had fed him from the right.
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ARLukomski
Notts County have met Mansfield Town 52 times over the years in the Nottinghamshire derby.
Notts: 18
Draw: 15
Mansfield: 19
Notts haven’t won a Nottinghamshire derby in 13 years (Notts and Mansfield didn’t play each other in the league for 7 years between 2008 and 2015) and have lost on their last four visits to Field Mill for a league game.
Since the derby resumed from 2015-16 onwards, Mansfield are unbeaten against winning 4 times and drawing twice with an aggregate score of 14-3.
Stats
Mansfield are on a 12-game unbeaten run in League Two and have only lost once this season (a 2-1 home loss to Exeter). In that run, they have won 5 and drew 7.
Notts are winless in their last eight league games but with Neal Ardley now in charge, they hope the ex-Dons boss will steady the ship. In the eight-game winless run, Notts have drawn 4 and lost 4, scoring 6 and conceding 15.
Seasons in each division
First Division (or Prem): 0
Second Division (or Champ): 1
Third Division (or League 1): 42
Fourth Division (or League 2): 32
Non-League: 5
History
Mansfield were elected to the football league in 1931.
Mansfield have the oldest professional football ground, currently in the football league.
March 1st is known as “Amber day” by Mansfield fans in reference to the day John Radford bought Field Mill from despised owner Keith Haslam.
The Stags were the first club to complete an entire season unbeaten at home in the 1950-51 season.
Team News
Jon Stead looks set to return to the starting line-up for Notts whilst fellow striker Kane Hemmings has trained this week.
Enzio Boldewijn and Lewis Alessandra will be out for a while with injuries picked up in November.
Matt Tootle is doubtful, and Ben Hall will be out long term after rolling his ankle earlier this week.
Alex MacDonald and Krystian Pearce may miss the game whilst CJ Hamilton played 45 minutes on Tuesday in the 1-0 Checkatrade Trophy loss to Bury.
David Mirfin has resumed training in the past few weeks.
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PON_News
Hello and welcome to "PONcast Extra: Derby Day as Notts County head to Mansfield Town", brought to you as always by Chris and Sam.
An addendum to our canon podcasts, this focuses solely on the biggest game of the season, the Nottinghamshire derby, featuring the mighty Pies and also that other team in the county.
So first, we talk about the general aspects of the game as a pre-match preview.
We also reflect on the opposition and how the Derby day might unfold.
In addition, we ask how Notts should line themselves up and which players could stand out.
We also speak about how the Mansfield game is Neal Ardley's first real game in charge following the test run at Sunderland.
All this and more only in the PONcast Extra: Derby Day Match Preview!
Share your thoughts about this PONcast Extra on Pride of Nottingham by signing up to the website, visiting the forum and joining in the chat with hundreds of fellow Notts County fans.
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PON_News
Notts County duo Matt Tootle and Ben Hall have been ruled out through injury, manager Neal Ardley has confirmed.
Neither defender took part in the Magpies' EFL Trophy game against Sunderland, which finished as a 2-0 win to the Black Cats.
Both players suffered their injuries last week, with Hall requiring a scan but Tootle being spared that, added Ardley.
"I think Matt is fine and it’s just a case of him not feeling the pain and doing the rehab to get back," the new Notts boss told the Nottingham Post.
“We had a little bit of an upset with Ben who rolled his ankle in a game last week on my first day.
“He is another one who is having a scan, so we are just going through one of those spells at the moment.”
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PON_News
Neal Ardley has commented on the history that Notts County have in "getting through managers left, right and centre" as he gets his tenure under way.
The former AFC Wimbledon manager is the third permanent manager to take a place in the Magpies dugout this season.
Kevin Nolan got the season under way, before being sacked in place of Harry Kewell, who was then in turn dismissed to eventually make room for Ardley.
Indeed, the 46-year-old is the club’s 24th manager in 20 years on Wednesday, but he says it doesn't bother him.
“When you talk about Notts getting through managers left right and centre, you have to believe in yourself,” he told the Nottingham Post.
“You have to say I can do this and not give them reason to want to get rid of me. So that doesn’t bother me.”
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PON_News
Hello and welcome to Episode 49 of the Pride of Nottingham PONcast, brought to you as always by Chris and Sam.
In this week's episode we talk about Notts County's recent game against Carlisle United at Meadow Lane, with the Magpies once again relinquishing a lead to draw 1-1 - a result which does little good to the ailing club.
We also discuss Enzio Boldewijn's three-month injury layoff and how it will affect the team.
Also, we share our thoughts on the appointment of Neal Ardley as County's new manager and Jamie Turley's contract.
In addition we preview the upcoming league game against Mansfield Town - the big derby, an occasion which is not to be missed.
All this and more only in Episode 49 of the Pride of Nottingham PONcast!
Share your thoughts about this episode on Pride of Nottingham by signing up to the website, visiting the forum and joining in the chat with hundreds of fellow Notts County fans.
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ARLukomski
Another matchday, another disappointing result as Notts County let a one-goal lead slip en route to a 1-1 draw with Carlisle United.
In Steve Chettle's last game in interim charge, the Magpies were once again poor, but held out in the first half to remain level with the travelling Cumbrians.
Notts went on to take the lead just after the hour mark, however, as Noor Husin's effort was cleared off the line before Elliott Hewitt reacted to stab home.
But is it much of a surprise that things then didn't pan out? Not really, given the continuing narrative of this season.
With just six minutes of standard time, Carlisle loanee Jerry Yates headed home to salvage a point for the visitors.
ARLukomski, a teenage Notts fan who's had to put up with enough more football-related grief to last a thousand lifetimes by supporting the Magpies, speaks about the game in his latest vlog.
Share your thoughts about ARLukomski's latest video on Pride of Nottingham by signing up to the website, visiting the forum and joining in the chat with hundreds of fellow Notts County fans.
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PON_News
Notts County have announced that teenage forward Kion Etete has signed professional terms at Meadow Lane.
The 17-year-old, who celebrated his birthday today, made his senior debut against Newcastle United’s Under 21s in October’s EFL Trophy game.
Etete has since come off the bench in away games at Port Vale, Barnsley and Morecambe and is now looking forward to playing under new boss Neal Ardley.
“Being around the first team has been a great experience for me and now I’m just going to be doing all I can to show the new manager what I can do,” Etete told the official website.
“Under 23s matches will give me the chance to prove myself against older players from a higher level and I can still play for the Under 18s, which will keep me up to speed.
“It feels quite surreal as this is just the start of my day. I’ve got my first driving lesson and a Premier League Cup fixture against Southampton coming up later!”
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Pride of Nottingham is an independent fansite devoted to Notts County, the world’s oldest league football club. Created in 2013, it has served as a source of Magpie news, features, match previews, reports, analysis and interviews for more than three years.

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