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  1. Notts County and Exeter City have met a total of 43 times over their history, the first meeting coming at St James’ Park in Division Three (South) which finished as a 3-3 draw. The Magpies have an excellent record against the Grecians; out of those 43 games, Notts claimed a result in 35, with 17 wins and 18 draws. Our recent form (last five) is not too bad, with two wins, two draws and one defeat. Exeter was formed in 1901 as St. Sidwell's United and played in the Southern League from 1908 until 1920, when that league's top division was absorbed into The Football League as its new Division Three. The club was the first ever team to play the Brazilian national team in 1914, a match which was commemorated in a 2014 friendly game against Fluminense. City took 60 years to achieve their first ever promotion, finishing fourth in Division Four in the 1963–64 season. Since then, the club have mostly yo-yoed between the third and fourth divisions, spending five years in the Conference between 2003 and 2008; having been promoted a further four times (in 1976–77, 1989–90, 2007–08 and 2008–09) and relegated five times (in 1965–66,1983–84, 1993–94, 2002–03 and 2011–12). Famous fans include Coldplay frontman Chris Martin, Adrian Edmondson, Mark Nicol and Noel Edmonds. Singer Joss Stone signed up as a member of the Supporters' Trust, being introduced to fans on the pitch as a new member during a League Cup match against Liverpool. In 2002 pop singer Michael Jackson was made honorary director of Exeter City. He visited St James Park with celebrity friend Uri Geller, who was also a director. The crew of the HMS Defender also adopted Exeter City as their home team and use their strip if playing games whilst on tour. Team news Notts have no fresh injury concerns and a fully-fit squad ahead of the visit of Exeter. Magpies manager Kevin Nolan could keep faith with the side that started Saturday's 2-1 home win against Cheltenham, although he has plenty of options. Carl Dickinson was back in the squad for that game after recovering from a knee injury but he had to settle for a place on the bench, while Adam Campbell and Haydn Hollis were both left out altogether. Jorge Grant, on loan from Nottingham Forest, made an impression during his late cameo from the bench at the weekend but it remains to be seen whether the midfielder did enough to force his way into Nolan's XI. Reuben Reid will once again feature in the Exeter attack after recovering from illness to lead the line in the 3-0 defeat to fellow promotion hopefuls Plymouth Argyle. Reid will be joined in attack by Ollie Watkins who recovered from a foot injury in time to face the Pilgrims, with Liam McAlinden and Robbie Simpson again likely to have to settle for a place on the bench. Share your thoughts about the game on Pride of Nottingham by signing up to the website, visiting the forum and joining the conversation.
  2. Richard Duffy has claimed that Notts County have "nothing to fear" when Exeter City visit Meadow Lane on Tuesday night. The Magpies are looking for their third consecutive home win following their 2-1 victory over Cheltenham Town at the weekend, in which Duffy scored. Exeter have the best away record in League Two, with a massive 10 wins out of 16 fixtures on the road so far, but the former Wales international is up to the challenge. Duffy told the Nottingham Post: "They've got the best away record in all four divisions I think. They will come here full of confidence. "They've been on a great run although they lost to Plymouth at the weekend. But we have nothing to fear given the way we played in the first half against Cheltenham. "We saw the game out in the second because they are not an easy team to play against. They are direct and you have to defend for your lives." Duffy had kind words to say about the turnout in the game against the Robins, adding: "The crowd got behind us and it was probably the best first-half performance of the season. "It was great support for where we are in the league. The teams around us are getting nowhere near that, so a big thanks to the fans for turning up." Share your thoughts about this story on Pride of Nottingham by signing up to the website, visiting the forum and joining the conversation.
  3. Notts County have extended their gap above the League Two relegation zone to three points after a 2-1 win over Cheltenham Town in Saturday's game at Meadow Lane. The Magpies began brightly and took the lead in the 24th minute when Michael O'Connor unlocked the Robins defence with a delightful pass which curled into the path of a charging Jon Stead, who bore down on goal under pressure and rifled past Scott Brown into the roof of the net. Just nine minutes later, Kevin Nolan's side had doubled their lead with the kind of goal which has often been their undoing this season, so it was a relief to see it scored at the other end of the pitch as Mark Yeates swung a corner into the box and Richard Duffy shrugged off the opposition defenders to nod home. Notts could have been three to the good just before half time when Stead raced through one-on-one, but Brown blocked well this time. Despite a tactical shuffle by Cheltenham boss Gary Johnson, which saw his side improve, Notts remained a threat as substitute Jonathan Forte hit the post and Tahvon Campbell skewed the follow-up wide in the 75th minute. Manny Onariase managed to grab a late goal for the visitors to set up a nervy finish for the home crowd, but the Magpies held firm and secured all three points which gave their first against the drop a much-needed boost. Share your thoughts about the game on Pride of Nottingham by signing up to the website, visiting the forum and joining the conversation.
  4. Notts County boss Kevin Nolan has revealed that Jon Stead was in fact the subject of a bid from the United States, but was not willing to let his top scorer go. There were rumours going round in January that the striker was on the radar of an American club, but ultimately he stayed put at Meadow Lane. Stead scored his 11th goal of the season against Cheltenham Town on Saturday, which proved crucial as the final result was 2-1 and helped the Magpies create some distance between them and the bottom two. Nolan told the Nottingham Post: "He's had a great opportunity to go and play across the water and it would have been life changing for him and his family. But I just told him that I could not let my top scorer go. "I brought people in who can work with him, but nobody who could replace him. He's been first class since I came in and I just thought it looked like a different Jon Stead. "There's been a lot of speculation but we finally put that to bed earlier this week. He has been fantastic since I came in so I am delighted for him." Share your thoughts about this story on Pride of Nottingham by signing up to the website, visiting the forum and joining the conversation.
  5. Kevin Nolan has described his Notts County charges as "absolutely fantastic" after their 2-1 home win over Cheltenham Town on Saturday. The Magpies moved three points clear of League Two's relegation zone as Jon Stead and Richard Duffy scored, while Manny Onariase's late strike did not prove more than a consolation in the end. Nolan told the official Notts site: "I've got to take my hat off to the boys - they were absolutely fantastic. "We created a lot of chances, which is very pleasing, and hopefully we can now start to chip away at the goal difference we've inherited over the last few months. "The more games we win, the more the confidence comes back. "Attention now turns to the next game. We've got to make sure we're professional and ready for Tuesday (against Exeter City). "It's going to be another tough one and it's about building momentum." Share your thoughts about this story on Pride of Nottingham by signing up to the website, visiting the forum and joining the conversation.
  6. From the Ladbrokes News website: Notts County may still be involved in a battle against the drop in League Two, but having delivered victory in their last home game, and now brought in three new players – including himself! – new boss Kevin Nolan is optimistic about the Magpies’ prospects. With Ladbrokes being the proud shirt sponsors of the world’s oldest Football League club, the Ladbrokes News team have developed quite the affinity for County. So we were hoping Nolan’s optimism was well-placed when we caught up with the gaffer ahead of this weekend’s meeting with Cheltenham Town. Ladbrokes News: The game at Accrington last weekend didn’t go as you would have wanted, but form has improved with four points in as many games since you took over. What’s encouraged you most about this squad and the players at your disposal? Kevin Nolan: Last week was disappointing, but I was delighted with the previous game [a 2-1 victory over Crawley Town]. What we need at this stage of the season is consistency, and I think the lads here have the quality to deliver that. We need to start seeing results improve on a weekly basis, instead of just one good performance every now and then. But I’m already encouraged by the fact they’re taking on board what I’ve said, following instructions and working hard in training. If they keep doing that, I’m confident we’ll see a marked improvement in results on the pitch. Ladbrokes News: You won the last home game against Crawley Town 2-1. County showed great character to go on and get that 90th-minute winner when you had 10 men. Has that given everyone a lift and an added belief that you can stay up? Kevin Nolan: Definitely. Winning games brings confidence, and the way we dug in and got that result is something which has given the players a real spring in their step. When you’re down to 10 men, especially during a difficult run, some players might buckle under the pressure or let their heads drop, but we did the exact opposite – and our determination and level of performance meant we ended up with a thoroughly deserved victory. LN: It’s a real six-pointer at Meadow Lane on Saturday as you take on Cheltenham Town. The reverse fixture finished 3-2 to County. Do you think we’ll see another open game and plenty of goals? Or might this be a tighter affair? KN: Well, I’m hoping it’s not like the last home game where we leave it until the last minute! We will get at Cheltenham and attack them right from the first whistle, and won’t allow them to get comfortable. That’s the ethos right now. If it’s an entertaining game again, great – but at the moment, just getting the win, enjoying it and then moving on to the next game is by far the most important thing. So we’ll go out there, put them under pressure and hopefully our game plan will yield the three points. LN: You’ve registered yourself as a player for the remainder of the season. What kind of role do you see yourself playing on the pitch? I’m sure it’ll be beneficial for the younger lads to have such an experienced head on the field with them. KN: As much as anything, I just feel it’s handy to have the cover if we get a few injuries, or for rotating the squad during periods where the games are coming thick and fast. But it’s going to take a lot for me to oust Michael O’Connor and Milly [Robert Milsom] in the middle of the park, because they’ve been fantastic since I’ve come in. But if I need to, I’m happy to slot in, and think I can complement what we have in midfield. LN: We’ve seen a couple of additions to the squad arrive from elsewhere too – a former teammate of yours at Newcastle, Shola Ameobi, and Mark Yeates from Blackpool, who’s got plenty of pedigree in the Football League. What are you hoping to see from those two? KN: Shola adds quality in his all-round play. He’s also got tons of experience, and you can rely on him to chip in with a few goals. Mark is excellent on the ball, and has the ability to really open up defences with his dribbling, and he’s a real threat from set-pieces as well. They’re two great additions in a playing sense, and good lads to have in the dressing room as well, so hopefully they can make a big difference for us.
  7. Notts County goalkeeper Adam Collin has admitted that the season has been tough so far, but believes that the Magpies are "steadying the ship" following Kevin Nolan's arrival. The 32-year-old joined Notts in the summer following a career which began at Newcastle United and saw him turn out for the likes of Rotherham United, Carlisle United and non-league Workington AFC. He told the Eastwood & Kimberley Advertiser: “The move to Notts County came about as soon as John Sheridan and Mark Crossley were appointed as the new management team. “I was out of contract after a successful three years at Rotherham United and they got in touch asking if I would like to come in as No.1 goalkeeper. “It’s been a very tough season so far. We started well and then all of a sudden the wheels fell off and we lost 10 games in a row. “We were conceding too many goals and not scoring enough and now, with a change of manager, we look to be steadying the ship and getting back to looking a solid team. “The new manager has come in and looked to make us harder to beat and more solid. We have good players we just needed a settled shape to the team and to be more organised.” Collin also spoke about playing in the derby against Mansfield and keeping a clean sheet, as well as feeling pride at having youngsters from his academy in attendance. He added: “The derby was a great game to play in. The atmosphere was fantastic and to get a clean sheet and to make a good save off the deflected shot was the highlight for me, plus to have quite a few of my young goalies from the academy there watching was a big bonus.” The AC1 Goalkeeping Academy is based in Mansfield and currently has around 30 youngsters learning the ropes - for more information click here. Share your thoughts about this story on Pride of Nottingham by signing up to the website, visiting the forum and joining the conversation.
  8. Kevin Nolan has revealed that Richard Duffy has chosen to have a clause removed from his Notts County contract which would have trigged an extension in order to continue being picked for the Magpies. The Notts boss claimed that Alan Hardy, having taken over the club a month ago, was not happy with the clause, given the club's risky situation near the bottom of League Two, but they would review his deal "as soon as we're safe". Nolan told the Nottingham Post: "When I first came in he had to make one more appearance and he would've got a new contract. "But the chairman wasn't happy with that, so we spoke to Duffer and said 'if you take the clause out you can be available to play'. "He said 'take it out, I don't care, I want to play for this club' – and fair play to him, hats off to him, the man has been absolutely fantastic since I've walked through the door. "The fans should know what he's done because he wants to play here, he wants to do the business here. "I've seen a lot of players down the years when they've got it, going 'no I'll just sit here and take my money'. "But that's not Richard Duffy, he wants to be involved, he wants to help the cause. "And he knows if he keeps performing the way he is there's going to be people wanting to sign him at the end of the season, and hopefully it's going to be us who gets him. "I've said to him, 'as soon as we're safe, we'll talk'. "Hopefully we will get safe as soon as possible and then we can start talking contracts with lads who we want to keep. "Listen, that's way down the line. All I want to do is put it out there what that lad's done, and how much he's here for the cause. "When you've got people like him in your dressing room you've always got a good chance." Share your thoughts about this story on Pride of Nottingham by signing up to the website, visiting the forum and joining the conversation.

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