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  1. Pride of Nottingham are delighted to announce that we have sponsored Jonathan Forte's home kit for the 2017/18 season. The Barbados international is currently in his fourth spell at Notts County, having joined permanently from Oldham Athletic in July 2016. Prior to that, Forte had been on loan at Notts three times, in 2008 (four games, four goals), 2009 (14 games, four goals) and 2012 (10 games, five goals). This season, the Sheffield-born striker made his first appearance in the League Cup penalty shootout defeat to Scunthorpe United at Glanford Park, where he impressed up front. Notts manager Kevin Nolan had revealed prior to the game that he and Forte had a "frank discussion" at the weekend but, following the 120 minutes plus spot kicks at Scunthorpe, he had nothing but good things to say about the 31-year-old. “He harried them, he created chances for himself as well as others,” Nolan told the Nottingham Post. “It’s just exactly what I wanted from Forte which was to use what he’s best at. That was using his pace and a good touch to try to get shots off. He did all of it and I thought he was excellent on Tuesday night. “We had a frank discussion after the Coventry game and a few home truths come out. But he responded in the right way. He proved to me that he wants to be here and fight for his place. “That’s a great thing for me because he’s putting pressure on Jon Stead and Shola Ameobi which they thought they probably didn’t have on Tuesday night. So I have options and that’s great." Pride of Nottingham would like to wish Forte all the best for the remainder of the 2017/18 season - COME ON YOU PIES!!! Share your thoughts about this story 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. We at Pride of Nottingham want you to enjoy all our content for free. If you fancy helping us provide even better content, however, please consider contributing to PON by clicking here!
  2. So next season us Notts County fans have the option of choosing one of several sponsors on the front of the new Puma shirt, and there is also the option to get one without a sponsor. I have to say, I was skeptical with how it would work, but the club has pulled off a masterstroke - and it seems so easy and logical. Personally, I will opt for the Notts shirt with Jake Bugg's name on it - I can see it becoming a bit of a cult fashion item in the years to come. But many purists will love the idea of a shirt without sponsor, and in all fairness I would have opted for that were it not for the Bugg sponsor. So what are you opting for? Sponsor or sponsor-free? And if it's the former, which one are you going for? Let PON know!
  3. Notts County manager Kevin Nolan cannot wait for the 2017/18 season to get underway. The Magpies start the new campaign away to Coventry City on Saturday, one of the most difficult opening-day propositions they could have asked for. Nolan acknowledges that a lot of players will be disappointed when it comes to the Notts matchday squad at the Ricoh Arena, but says everyone will get their opportunity in a busy opening month. "I'm absolutely buzzing for it now," he told the official Notts website. "The boys have been ready for a number of days so we're really looking forward to it. "I have played at the Ricoh Arena a few times and it's a lovely stadium to start the season off at. But it shows where Coventry have come from - it's not just us who have had a few turbulent years. "We can't feel sorry for ourselves because we are a club that's now going in the right direction and we can't feel sorry for Coventry either. "We have our own hurdles to overcome and hopefully we can come away with a positive result and performance. "There will be a lot of people disappointed on Saturday but they will get their opportunity in the next few weeks. It's up to them to keep the shirt when they get it. "Everyone will be available on Saturday which is fantastic news for us and it shows the condition the lads have all come back in - they look a lot stronger, more powerful and are ready to go." Share your thoughts about this news story 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. We at Pride of Nottingham want you to enjoy all our content for free. If you fancy helping us provide even better content, however, please consider contributing to PON by clicking here!
  4. Notts County manager Kevin Nolan has confirmed that Richard Duffy will captain the team this coming season. With skipper Michael O’Connor out until next year, the Magpies boss has given the armband to the Welsh defender, who penned a new contract in the summer after originally agreeing to write off a clause in his contract guaranteeing him a year’s deal. “Duffer stepped in as captain when Michael got injured last season and he was a great deputy,” Nolan told the Nottingham Post. “He leads on the pitch and he’s been fantastic in pre-season leading the boys. “Since I came into the club in January he’s been first class. I’ve enjoyed working with him every day and he doesn’t shy away from anything. “He always gives everything. I spoke about him earlier in my tenure when I said ‘look, given what’s been going on, the owner doesn’t feel your clause should be triggered’. “He just said ‘ok, let’s go and play’. That’s the type of lad you are dealing with.” Share your thoughts about this news story 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. We at Pride of Nottingham want you to enjoy all our content for free. If you fancy helping us provide even better content, however, please consider contributing to PON by clicking here!
  5. The start of the new EFL season is but a few days away - 72 teams playing 46 fixtures each in the Championship, League One and League Two, plus a load of cup games to boot. It'll be a slog, a marathon, and all sorts of emotions will be flying round the country as some teams hit the jackpot and others hit the mud. In this piece, Pride of Nottingham gives its predictions on who is expected to impress in League Two, from the automatic promotion candidates to the playoff hopefuls, as well as those who are expected to have a tough time staying in the Football League. And of course, looking at where Notts County will be expected to rank among the 24 teams come may. Promotion candidates Luton Town Luton Town lost in last season’s playoff semi-finals, but should challenge again under the management of Nathan Jones. Alongside Mansfield, the Hatters have one of the highest budgets in the division, and although they lost Cameron McGeehan and Jack Marriott in the summer, they have made a number of impressive signings, including Alan McCormack from Brentford and 22-goal striker James Collins from Crawley Town. Mansfield Town The Stags finished last season just four points behind the playoffs, but over the summer, owner John Radford has financially backed manager Steve Evans to the hilt, leading to more than a dozen additions, many of these high-quality, alongside an already talented squad. And with Evans already boasting seven promotions on his CV and determined to make it eight, it is no surprise many are tipping the Stags to go up (but as a Notts fan, I hope they don't!). Coventry City Relegation was a bitter pill to swallow for Sky Blues fans last season, but manager Mark Robins gave the club a much-needed boost with an upturn in performance and results. In addition, a number of quality signings have arrived at the Ricoh Arena, including Michael Doyle from Portsmouth, Liam Kelly from Leyton Orient, Mark McNulty from Sheffield United and Peter Vincenti from Rochdale. Playoff hopefuls Crewe Alexandra The Railwaymen have been on a downward trajectory for a number of years now, culminating in a woeful 17th-placed finish in League Two last season, but this time round, Steve Davis is gone and David Artell will be able to stamp his mark on the team. With the impressive Chris Porter up front and a host of other quality players, Crewe could well mount a playoff tilt. Cambridge United Former Notts County manager Shaun Derry is building an impressive side at the Abbey Stadium. The U's had one of the league’s standout performers in goalscoring midfielder Luke Berry last season and have strengthened by recruiting Jabo Ibehre from Carlisle United. They finished four points shy of seventh last season and have strengthened at the back with the goalkeeper David Forde, a big influence at Portsmouth last season. Swindon Town Following relegation to League Two, the Robins will be hoping to find more stability this season with the departure of director of football Tim Sherwood that many fans were eager to see. With a proven manager in David Flitcroft at the helm and a good squad which includes Chris Robertson and James Dunne, Swindon will probably fall short of automatic promotion but should be in the hunt for a playoff berth. Stevenage Stevenage made huge strides in Darren Sarll’s first full season at the helm and looked like genuine contenders for automatic promotion as they claimed ten wins from 13 matches, but limped over the line with two wins from their final six games. Sarll will want to make amends this time round and, with the additions of Blair Turgott, Danny Newton and Joe Martin, the team is a stronger proposition this time round. Notts County Perhaps a little biased given this is a Notts fan site, but I honestly believe the Magpies will be pushing for a playoff position. Although the latest batch of signings may be somewhat underwhelming, let's not forget what preceded it - all the key players from last season renewing their contracts, some shrewd acquisitions which have strengthened most of the outfield areas, and of course the return of Jorge Grant. I'm a little skeptical about the goalkeepers, but I'm hoping Ross Fitzsimons and Branislav Pindroch will surprise me. With stability behind the scenes and a quality manager in Kevin Nolan, it bodes well. Potential Strugglers Newport County Last season, Newport were a dead club walking, only to pull off one of the greatest escapes in modern football. However, the reality is that they have one of the smallest budgets in the division and lost several key players over the summer, including Mark Randall, Ryan Bird and Mitch Rose, to leave them with a playing squad of just 19. They've pretty much been the Sunderland of League Two, and I think they will finally give in this year. Crawley Town The Red Devils have a real fight on their hands beating the drop again. New manager Harry Kewell is inexperienced - his first managerial job in senior football, in fact - while highly-rated striker James Collins has moved to Luton, with no adequate replacement having yet been recruited, and their back line let in 71 goals last season, so it's difficult to see them do anything but struggle this year. Yeovil Town The Glovers have dropped down two divisions and finishing in the bottom six of the basement for the past two seasons. Last season they won just three out of their last 27 games, and although manager Darren Way has not been shy in the transfer market, few of them are particularly impressive and it is hard to see where goals will come from, while at the back, Alex Lacey's departure will be difficult to replace. Morecambe Off the field problems and the loss of Ryan Edwards at the back and Paul Mullin up front will likely make it a hard fight for survival this season for the Shrimps. Their budget remains one of the lowest in the division which means recruitment will not bring in any exceptional players, so once again, it is difficult to see the Globe Arena side offer anything more than a battle to stay in the Football League. Share your thoughts about this League Two season preview 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. We at Pride of Nottingham want you to enjoy all our content for free. If you fancy helping us provide even better content, however, please consider contributing to PON by clicking here!
  6. It's clear that Notts need signings. Even before we played our first two friendlies, against Rolls-Royce and Basford, it was very clear. In terms of transfer activity, our three signings so far puts us 20th in League Two in terms of how many players we've brought in. At the current moment in time we can only just about fill a matchday squad. Improvements and a bit of squad depth is definitely needed. Every position, apart from left-back, needs either a new signing who is going to come into the starting XI or a new signing which will add depth. Firstly let's start in goal. Adam Collin showed last season he can be prone to making more than one mistake in a game and many fans have wanted him replaced. Although he has his faults, it's hard to see Kevin Nolan dropping him from the first team. Joe Searson-Smithard is Notts through and through but at the moment I don't think he's ready for the first team, though it would be nice to see him become our No.1 in the near future. A few goalkeepers have been on trial for the two friendlies as expected in pre season with Connor Brennan, Joe Cracknell and Ross Fitzsimons joining the team. Any of these three would be nice just as back-up. Right-back was a bit of the problem until the other day when me and my brother realised Jordan Richards could be back-up to Matt Tootle. In my opinion, we should have kept Luther Wildin as back-up, so we didn't have to spend in that area. As we know Tootle picked up a few injuries last season but under the management of Kevin Nolan he has been solid. But if injuries start piling up, we need someone to fill the spot. Well well well. The wonderful world of centre-backs. Everyone has split opinions on Richard Duffy and Haydn Hollis. If you watched my vlogs last season, you'll know I was very critical of Duffy during the awful run between November and early January. But under Nolan, he was transformed and had a solid partnership with Hollis and on occasions, Thierry Audel to see us comfortably to safety. Hollis has divided opinion ever since the Great Escape in 2014. Well, here he is, still with us after signing another new contract. This year he has to prove his future lies here. We have the manager, the owner, the facitlies and now is his time to prove the haters wrong and prove that he belongs in the Notts first team. But sadly we're not all rosy in this part of the pitch. In my opinion a Duffy-Hollis partnership will not take us up. And at the minute they are our only two centrebacks at the club. Mike Edwards is back-up. He's our fitness coach. Edwards cannot be playing again next season if we want to win promotion. He's a nice guy but he shouldn't have to be called upon on the pitch. So one or two required in this area. Pierce Bird from Dunkirk (who I think we should sign) has been on trial and youth team player Peter Dearle has played in friendlies. At the start of the window, Notts approached Lincoln City captain Luke Waterfall but he rejected our terms and offered to sign a contract extension at Sincil Bank. A move for a defender recently collapsed so we are back to square one. I would like to sign ex-Wycombe defender Aaron Pierre but after recently having a trial at Bristol City but not being offered a contract it's probable that he might end up in League One. Kevin Toner on loan from Aston Villa wouldn't be a bad transfer as he spent time on loan at a Bradford City side that reached the play-off final last season. James Wilson didn't start regurlarly for Sheffield United last season so he could be worth a look as well. This would make sense as the Blades recently bought Richard Stearman in from Wolves. Another centre-back I'd like is Dominic Ball from Rotherham whether on loan or permanent. He is also a player I said we should have got on loan in January. Tom Anderson on loan from Burnley would be another decent signing as he has had previous experience of lower league after two loan spells at Chesterfield and one at Carlisle. Moving onto the wing and yes, whilst we have signed Lewis Alessandra and Terry Hawkridge, we are still a little short. And if injuries happen we need players to replace them. I would like to see Sam Osborne get more games this season but whether he's ready or not remains to be seen. Milan Lalkovic on loan from Portsmouth would not be a bad shout as he hasn't played regularly for last season's League Two champions. He scored 7 goals from the wing in a Walsall team that reached the play offs in League One in 2016. That was enough for Pompey to pay compensation for his services last summer. A winger from the Premier League or Championship on loan wouldn't go amiss, and as shown previously they can be a big threat at League Two level. Luke Gambin or Lawson D'Ath from Luton would be good signings for this level as well. Both signed in January and so far D'Ath has struggled to break into the Hatters first team. Moving swiftly into centre midfield and the saga that Notts have only just seen the back of. Notts made four bids for Liam Noble and none were successful. The saga has consumed the Magpies' transfer window up until now and no matter how much Notts tried, Forest Green weren't going to budge. At the start, it was clear £100k was going to be enough, but only a few weeks and four bids later, FGR manager Mark Cooper told BBC Radio Gloucester that the former Notts midfielder was not for sale. Since we wanted him, I said I didn't want him back because of his previous disciplinary record, he's not worth £100k and there are better out there. One player who is better and one that we should of got was Louis Reed, on loan from Sheffield United but recently signed for Chesterfield. Jermaine Anderson of Peterborough is another player I would aim for on loan but has injury problems in the last year or two. I would like to sign Connor Dimaio but I can't see him leaving Chesterfield. Other players we could look at in this area are Ryan Yates (Forest), Jordon Houghton (Doncaster), Giorgio Rasulo (MK Dons) and Ben Whitfield (Bournemouth). Strikers are needed. I've constantly said on Twitter that strikers are a must. Stead and Ameobi are 34 and 35 respectively and whilst Stead scored 14 last season we need someone else and someone with pace. Notts had were linked with Matt Godden but that soon fizzled out. Football League World have said that we should get Toni Martinez on loan from West Ham. The Spaniard has already had one loan spell previously and that was at Oxford United last season. With a few West Ham fans wanting him to be given a chance, this would a fantastic signing for League Two level. Another Premier League player we should be interested in taking on loan is Callum Roberts from Newcastle. He has done really well in the youth team at Newcastle and had a short spell in the England Under 20 team. Moving away from loanees and into permanent transfers. Oliver Hawkins is a player we really need to look at, he scored 18 goals in the National League last season for Dagenham and Redbridge. Portsmouth have already declared their interest but do not want to pay the money. Dagenham have said they want £250k for Hawkins but this price seems a bit much. Another striker who scored 18 in the National League last season is Danny Johnson from Gateshead. A delve into non-league for strikers would not be a bad decision at all. Thank you to ARLukomski for the article. Please check out his YouTube channel by clicking here. Share your thoughts about this news story 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. We at Pride of Nottingham want you to enjoy all our content for free. If you fancy helping us provide even better content, however, please consider contributing to PON by clicking here!
  7. As per the article published earlier today, here are our 10 reasons why we at Pride of Nottingham feel Notts County could have a good 2017/18 season: 1. Revamping training facilities and securing a new location 2. The re-capture of Jon Stead and Shola Ameobi 3. Signing players on a transfer fee 4. Academy focus and emphasis on producing good talent 5. Local derbies 6. Forging stronger networking opportunities (even with our neighbours) 7. Open communication from the board and chairman 8. Kevin Nolan – A young hungry manager who seeks success not just for himself 9 9. Ensuring the good atmosphere in the stands continues and never letting it degenerate to 2014-16 levels 10. Players that want to play and work hard for the club Do you agree with these points? Do you think there are more reasons as to why Notts are well poised to have a decent season? Let us know
  8. After putting two very disappointing League Two campaigns behind us, Pride of Nottingham delves into why we feel the 2017-2018 season will finally see Notts County move forward and secure the stability which will allow the club to be a strong contender for promotion in future seasons. 1) Revamping training facilities and securing a new location The agreement to use Basford United’s facilities is a major coup for the club, the training pitches are some of the best I have seen in the lower leagues – much better than Arnold Town’s and central to Nottingham which ensures fairly straightforward travel for the players. Meanwhile, the recent overhaul of the Family Stand by Alan Hardy highlights the club's desire to move forward and to attract players in alternative ways. 2) The re-capture of Jon Stead and Shola Ameobi Whilst the majority of fans are all inclined to agree that we won’t see the duo partner up in many games back-to-back, we will however be able to rotate and with the potential of throwing Jonathan Forte into the mix – it provides the Magpies’ two very hard working strikers, something the club simply hasn’t had in recent years. They may be ‘experienced’ and what some refer as ‘the wrong side of 30’ – yet we know what we will get from them. 3) Signing players on a transfer fee Acquiring players on a free, even building a complete team around them, can be quite rewarding. In the lower two divisions it’s actually much harder and I have mentioned for a number of years how much beneficial it is to sign a player for a fee. I don’t mean just one and of course they must be the right players. Yet assembling a mixed squad will allow us to establish the right tools to be successful on the pitch. 4) Academy focus and emphasis on producing good talent Although nothing new to Notts County, the previous emphasis sort of rushed youngsters to making the step up and often seen players like Tyrell Waite, Fabian Spiess and Montel Gibson lost within the first team shuffle. With a new focus on mentoring and offering support, this will allow the club to help the youngster transition properly into first team football – whilst the changes discussed by Academy manager Jon Goodman highlights the renewed desire to produce talent which is ready to make the jump before it happens or is called upon. 5) Local derbies The likes of Chesterfield, Mansfield Town and Lincoln City give an extra edge to the upcoming season, we haven’t done well in recent years in these games but I strongly feel that the 2017/2018 season will see these games give us an extra aspect to push ourselves forward. League Two will see quite a few more reasonable games which will lift match days both home and away. 6) Forging stronger networking opportunities (even with our neighbours) We have to show an openness towards working with any club fortunate enough to be in a better position than ourselves. Notts have had a very good report with dealing with other clubs prospects and ensuring a safe transition for them into first team football. Tom Ince, Alan Judge, Jack Grealish and Callum McGregor are a few of the talents we have given an opportunity to. So on the back of Jorge Grant and others, it’s vastly important that we keep an open door to all the clubs in the Premier League and Championship – in order to network better and to acquire the right players on loan (not just those the clubs open to loaning out). 7) Open communication from the board and chairman Naturally there will be aspects from open communication, especially on a social network such as Twitter which will leave desirable questions and see responses which, let’s face it, might not be accepted. Yet Alan Hardy has stressed his openness to engaging with supporters, whilst he shares many positives tweets from his day-to-day running of Notts County. We have seen the stonewall silence treatment, lack of news and an unhealthy relationship towards local media – so let’s be grateful to see the club return to caring about its fans and promoting the club in a healthy way. It may result in bigger rewards in the long term! 8) Kevin Nolan – A young hungry manager who seeks success not just for himself We have had the label ‘young and hungry’ describe managers such as Jamie Fullarton and even Shaun Derry. But there’s something quite obvious from the way Kevin Nolan conducts himself, he is a person I have no doubt attracts the right type of respect. As a player on the pitch he strived for better and oozed professionalism well beyond expectations, and adding his success on the field, these are all transferable qualities into management and for once I feel we have the right balance at the helm of Notts to see success. 9) Ensuring the good atmosphere in the stands continues and never letting it degenerate to 2014-16 levels A lack of communication by any business is an obvious wrong way about going about things, whilst Alan Hardy might have made some unpopular decisions and gone against the majority of fans opinions at times – there is no doubt that the decisions weigh on his belief for the best of the club. Whilst ensuring a better match day experience, among other things that will no doubt make the stands a better place for us fans. 10) Players that want to play and work hard for the club They say you often get what you pay for in football, as a club Notts have had some very good professionals from Alan Judge, Neal Bishop to Bartosz Bialkowski. Yet in the most recent seasons, we have seen players who haven’t quite shown the passion we expect to see as fans and one thing Kevin Nolan aims to address is ensuring players at the club want to be here. I feel this will be one of the bare minimum expectations from the club as we move forward. Share your thoughts about this feature 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.
  9. Notts County have done their big kit reveal, with the public now knowing the design of all their shirts and jerseys for the 2017/18 season. On Tuesday evening, the club released a video which showed manager Kevin Nolan visiting a young fan and showing him the new home shirt. Later on in the evening, Notts published an article on their website which showcased the home, away, third, goalkeeper and training kits. As with every release of new clothing, there will always be divided opinion among fans, with some loving it, some disliking it, some not being particularly bothered. But what is certain is that there is plenty of discussion about it. Pride of Nottingham has collated several fan opinions regarding the new kit, and indeed it's very much mixed. Share your thoughts about this article 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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