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Shola Ameobi has admitted that he is not outwardly looking to go into coaching once he hangs up his boots but has not fully closed the door on a potential switch to the dugout. The 36-year-old, who is in his 20th campaign as a professional footballer, is to make a decision on his future at the end of the season. Notts County boss Kevin Nolan has said he would welcome Ameobi as a coach at Meadow Lane, but the veteran striker admits he doesn't feel he has a passion for it. “Obviously management is something you think about and people have mentioned in the past that I’ve got the mentality for it,” Ameobi told the Nottingham Post. “But it’s not something I’ve ever thought that ‘I want to go into it’. “You could see with the manager here that he had that authority in any situation. You could sense he always had that destiny whereas for me I don’t have that sense myself. “It’s something that if I do go into then I will give it my all. But it’s not something I feel I have a passion for. “There are stresses and strains and it takes a lot out of you - especially at Newcastle where they’ve had to deal with a lot. “Some people make it look seamless and others don’t. I’ve seen both sides of it and I’ve seen how much you have to give. “It’s tough because football has been my whole life. But part of me just wants to be there for my family and my kids, especially the age they are. “In management you don’t get that and I’ve seen with Kevin that it’s stressful. But I am not saying I am never going to do it because sitting out the game six months, I’ll know I’ll miss it.” 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. Fancy showcasing your brand or business on Pride of Nottingham? Click here to find out more about sponsorship and advertising opportunities with us.
Shola Ameobi has revealed that he is mulling over whether to retire at the end of the season but will consider it properly in the summer. The 36-year-old has enjoyed a fruitful career in the English game, with more than 300 appearances for Newcastle United, the club he is most associated with. Ameobi has also impressed in Notts County colours since signing for Kevin Nolan last winter, and this season he has netted five and assisted four in 33 appearances. “That love is certainly still there for me,” Ameobi told the Nottingham Post. “It's a tough one. I think my mind wants to, but we just have to see where we are. “I've always said that I will take stock at the end of the season, give myself a couple of weeks and see if I'm good to go. “So at this point in time there's no yes or no. But what I do know is I'm still fully involved. “I still want to help this team make history and I think obviously if you do that then it would definitely sort of make the job easier in terms of deciding.” 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. Fancy showcasing your brand or business on Pride of Nottingham? Click here to find out more about sponsorship and advertising opportunities with us.
Kevin Nolan has revealed that he will be having a chat with Joey Barton in hope of persuading him to come to Notts County. Barton, who played alongside Nolan at Newcastle United, will be able to return to football in the summer once his 13-month ban for betting offences comes to an end. Although the 35-year-old is being tipped to join a Premier League or Championship team, the Magpies boss said he'd have a word with him and see what happens. “Joey and I are good friends and he’s also a good friend of Darren Fletcher (board member),” Nolan told the Nottingham Post. “He is a top player and a top lad. I really got on well with him and I think he describes himself as Joey on the pitch and Joseph off it. That’s his quote, not mine by the way. “I get on with both of them and respect both of them very highly. From my point of view he will probably want to play at a higher level. “If that doesn’t come to fruition then I am sure there will be a conversation between me and him in the summer. “If a deal can be done, then it can, but if not then we wish him well. “Let’s just see what happens. I am not ruling it out. It’s got to be right for the club, and most importantly it’s got to be right for the player. “I got on well with him at Newcastle and we are very good friends off the field and on it. “I don’t see it having a negative impact. It will only add more quality and positivity to the squad.” 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. Fancy showcasing your brand or business on Pride of Nottingham? Click here to find out more about sponsorship and advertising opportunities with us.
We're edging towards the end of February and Notts County's forward problems continue following the backfiring of our January gamble. Bringing Mason Bennett in on loan seemed a great idea at the time, given he's a highly rated and clearly talented footballer, very much admired by most fans of his parent club Derby. Unfortunately, Bennett is also injury prone, something which plenty of Rams fans I spoke to mentioned in sighing tones - were it not for his injury issues, he would probably be an established first-team despite his young age. And he showed his quality on his Notts debut against Crewe, getting the final goal in a superb 4-1 win, but then, the harsh reality of his injury record kicked in as he had to be taken off early on against Barnet with a hamstring problem, on which he has needed an operation. It's a bad situation for all three parties - Bennett is injured and must now go through the healing and rehabilitation process, Derby will be gutted to see one of their most talented youngsters suffer another setback, and Notts are back to square one in terms of their striker conundrum. So we have Shola Ameobi and Jon Stead, who simply haven't got the legs to do 90 minutes week in week out (sometimes twice a week); Jonathan Forte, who remains overlooked by Nolan and, if we're being especially critical, hasn't had the same impact as a starter as he does off the bench; Lewis Alessandra, who hasn't got the quality in front of goal and finishing touch of a centre-forward; Callum Saunders, who is too raw and inexperienced to be thrown in at the deep end now; and Alan Smith, the footballing equivalent of using a plaster to fix an amputation. With the transfer window now closed and the emergency loan system very kindly phased out by the suits up top, that leaves us having to root through the dumpster that is the free agent market in order to find somebody. Maybe that's a little harsh - after all, Shola Ameobi was snapped up last February after the transfer window closed, but Ameobi has always been a model professional who was unsure whether to hang up his boots until former teammate Nolan persuaded him to link up with Notts, and his attitude at the club has been superb ever since signing on the dotted line. This year, the free agent market is noticeably less impressive, and a name that Nolan has mentioned in terms of prospective signings should ring alarm bells among all the fans. Nile Ranger. The talented, prodigious forward who could now be leading the line for Newcastle United, and perhaps England, but who instead finds himself without a club after being dismissed by Southend United due to "reoccurring disciplinary issues". Now, I'm very much one who believes in second chances in any walk of life, and if an individual is genuinely remorseful and shows proper contrition, they should be given another shot instead of being thrown onto the scrap heap, which as a society we are quick to do. Ranger has been given numerous chances by clubs in hope that he could have knuckled down and delivered as per his talent, but every time, it's simply not happened, hence why a player who should be gracing the higher leagues now finds himself without a club. Even if we discount the multiple charges he's had over the last 10 years, some of which have resulted in convictions (the latest just last year for online banking fraud, which resulted in him being tagged and not being able to play evening games due to a curfew), there's also the general attitude issues. Do Notts really want a player who has celebrated a goal by using his boot to mimic a machine gun, or whose timekeeping and disciplinary issues led to his latest club cancelling a contract midway through the season despite having committed to 2020 just a year earlier? And yes, Alan Hardy did confirm on Twitter today that Ranger "was on a list, along with several others, but none of those are being pursued", which seemingly puts paid to that speculation, but let's not forget how Liam Noble wasn't "being pursued" either. So no. Personally I would not like to see Ranger signed by Notts, where he could risk disrupting the dressing room and potentially making the wrong headlines, which by proxy means Notts will make the wrong headlines, before an unceremonious mid-season cutting of ties further down the line. And aside from that, there's got to be a level of principle in the club. And I would personally rather see Notts not get a reinforcement and run the risk of not getting promoted than giving a chance to a player who's spurned far too many over the years. Share your thoughts about this feature 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. Fancy showcasing your brand or business on Pride of Nottingham? Click here to find out more about sponsorship and advertising opportunities with us.
A couple of years ago, Notts County boasted a number of former Manchester United players in Alan Smith, Roy Carroll and Kevin Pilkington. Of those, only Smith is still at Meadow Lane, which has morphed into a bit of a "Newcastle United Old Boys Club" now. Smith also played at St James' Park, while Kevin Nolan and Shola Ameobi also donned the "other" black and white stripes up on Tyneside. Having former Premier League players, individuals whose careers continue to be held in high esteem, at Notts is a huge boost on three fronts - on the pitch, off the pitch, and in the marketing department. (And of course I can't omit Jon Stead from this, even though he's not a former Newcastle man - in fact he played for bitter rivals Sunderland - but he's also a distinguished former PL player with an illustrious career.) On the pitch, the former PL players can read the game fantastically, what with experience gained against playing for and against some of the top sides in England and some of the top players in the world. There is also the psychological boost of having players that have played at the top level that the opposition players will have grown up watching and, although some can step up their game accordingly, others will feel intimidated or perhaps even a bit starstruck. Off the pitch, these players will be a font of knowledge from their years at the top and, alongside ensuring that standards are as high as they can be, will also have a sharp and refined tactical awareness - and of course they can coach their teammates accordingly, as they will be learning from the best. And the final point, that of marketing, has always been quite important but never so much as the present day, when the explosion of social media ensures that millions, even billions, of people can discover and discuss the latest football information at the touch of a button. In this respect, having former Premier League players will generate interest from far beyond the NG postcode and even beyond Britain - the likes of Smith, Nolan, Ameobi and Stead will have fans from Man United, Newcastle, West Ham, Bolton, Blackburn and other big clubs eager to find out more about how they're doing at Notts. When Notts were drawn against Salford in the FA Cup, the game made it on terrestrial largely because of the narrative pitting the side owned by several players of the Class of 92 against a club boasting United alumni. By having an interesting back story, it generates interest and as such will be given the spotlight. Similarly, the club has featured a lot in the national press in recent months, with Nolan on Sky Sports and BBC Sport, Stead doing an interview in the Daily Mail and so on. Obviously the club has done a lot of media-worthy things for itself - the changing rooms for example - but that star element has elevated the club above a lot of other lower-league clubs in the media. In conclusion, the presence of players and coaches that once graced the Premier League has given Notts a massive boost on multiple fronts and, combined with the shrewd ownership and management of Alan Hardy, it's led to the club going upwards both in League Two and in the media spotlight. Share your thoughts about this feature 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. Fancy showcasing your brand or business on Pride of Nottingham? Click here to find out more about sponsorship and advertising opportunities with us.
Notts County boss Kevin Nolan was one of the guests on BBC football show MOTD2 Extra on Sunday. Alongside host Garth Crooks, former Everton midfielder Leon Osman and New York Times journalist Rory Smith, he gave his thoughts on a number of football stories, including Manchester United's defeat at Huddersfield Town. On Jose Mourinho's post-match rant at the John Smith's Stadium "Mourinho was very angry with what happened. I'm sure he will have told the team what he was going to say on television. "When you are as big as Man United and results come that way he has a duty to tell the truth. Herrera said the same. They are well rehearsed. "Huddersfield was rocking before the game and the players were up for it. United's players have to realise what to expect. They have to take responsibility." On the Terriers beating United "It shows how much it meant that David Wagner said it was one of his proudest moments. "Huddersfield have set the stall out now. They have to stay at that level. If they do that they will find success. "Wagner will not have had to get his players up for that game. "I remember it when we got promoted with Bolton and beat Man United at Old Trafford. You remember everything you are told to do because you are so up for the game." On West Ham United striker - and former Newcastle United teammate - Andy Carroll "Andy Carroll is a good example of someone who trains differnt to how he plays in games. "He is around in games, 100mph, jumping into people in games but on a cold Monday morning on the training ground he has his hat on, huddling." On Tottenham Hotspur and England youngster Harry Winks "I watched Harry Winks a couple of seasons ago in a game against West Ham. He was a big part of helping Tottenham turn the game around. "Living down there, you hear a lot from Spurs fans who are excited about him. "We are League Two and we have to wait for all the business above us to be done. We get the lads on loan who have not been able to find a League One club. "When you get a gem like Winks, Pochettino has clearly realised he doesn't need to send him on loan and use him in the right way." 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. Fancy showcasing your brand or business on Pride of Nottingham? Click here to find out more about sponsorship and advertising opportunities with us.
Kevin Nolan's brilliant work at Notts County has not gone unnoticed in other parts of the country, particularly regions where he has formely worked. The North-East based Chronicle Live has published an article looking at how Nolan shook off a potentially fatal awry debut management job to become hot property at Meadow Lane. It ends with the statement: Who knows? He may even take the Newcastle United hot-seat in the future. Do you think it's just a matter of time before Nolan's managing a top-flight club? Potentially one of his former employers? Or maybe even a Sirrel or Warnock-style ascent to the top with Notts?