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- Stat Attack: Notts County vs. Grimsby Town, Saturday 16 December 2017
- Chris Buckley: 'We witnessed Notts County's rebirth in 2017, let's roar the club on to glory in 2018!'
- Carl Dickinson compares Notts County season to Stoke City 2007-08 promotion campaign
- Kevin Nolan: 'We must keep standards high against Grimsby Town'
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Showing results for tags 'playoffs'.
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Nope, not a reference to the Swedish pop band (so no "Dancing Queen" blasting out of the tannoy at half time... what a shame eh), but the new penalty shootout method adopted by the EFL for the upcoming season. So how does this ABBA system work? Over to the Beeb... As the current system stands, teams take turns in a shootout, with the choice of who goes first decided by a coin toss. For example, team A goes first, then team B, then team A again. The new system sees team A followed by team B - before team B goes again. Team A would then get two successive penalties, a little like the tie-break in tennis, and so on until there is a winner. A coin will still be tossed to decide who goes first. It will be implemented in all ties in the Carabao Cup, Checkatrade Trophy and EFL playoffs. So... a good idea or another unnecessary p*ssing about with the game's rules? Your thoughts, let's git em!
Joe Jones posted an article in NewsNotts County are good enough to launch a League Two playoff challenge next season, according to Shola Ameobi. The Magpies finished last season strongly, losing just once at home since Kevin Nolan took charge of the first team in January. Ameobi played a key role himself in driving the club out of relegation danger by scoring four goals following his arrival at the start of the year, and is now hoping for a top-seven finish. "I am always looking to do the best we can," he told the Nottingham Post. "We had a great end to last season and we want to make progress from that. "We don't want to be in another relegation fight and ideally you want to be in the top half of the league. "You want to be fighting for those promotion and play-off spots and personally I think we are good enough to be in those positions. "We want to be fighting for the play-offs and I know the manager will look to bring more players in that will help us try to achieve that." 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.
Chris posted an article in FeaturesThe recent League Two playoff games between Exeter City and Carlisle United, and Luton Town and Blackpool, have highlighted the narrow gap for error within this division. Exciting as they may be to watch, the playoffs aren’t easy, nor are they straightforward as people may think. Promotion at the end of the day can reap rewards for any club that is successful enough to clinch it - the evolution and step forward can ultimately turn around a club's fortunes too. League Two teams on their day can beat anyone, just look how Hartlepool United managed to claim a victory over the champions on the final day, so success on the field involves hard work and a lot of perseverance. Whilst some fans will argue that the standard of football is dire, it’s improved a lot over the years and is certainly difficult. I feel any lower tier division usually is this way, as the National League is about the hardest of them all – yet League Two is no easy street. Clubs have to earn their promotion and if Notts hadn’t lost all those games in a row, we may have been able to turn things around. When we were in the drop zone, I never felt we would push out and be on the verge of mathematically pushing up the higher end of the division. This alone shows you how quickly things can change in League Two. The league won’t be any easier next season, we will welcome the return of Lincoln City – who I feel will have a culture shock after how a portion of their fans have reacted in the past few days (well done for your promotion lads, but focus - you’re not champions of League Two yet). Yet they will give the majority of teams a good game on their day. Forest Green Rovers are rather unknown but I expect them to invest and to be more successful than most of the smaller League Two teams – i.e the sides like Newport County, Morecambe and Cheltenham Town. Other clubs falling down the pyramid will add further depth to the competition already found, with Port Vale being no push over. Swindon Town and Chesterfield are also sides that should be able to put aside the woes of relegation in order to focus on a new campaign. I am aware from various comments that Chesterfield are in some financial difficulty, yet I fully expect them to be pushing for the top half of the table. Coventry City may go on to replicate what we did in 1998 or lead the division like Doncaster Rovers did this campaign – I wouldn’t expect them to slip up at all. There will be more than 10 teams who are all capable of pushing for the top positions, so League Two won’t exactly be there for the taking for any club – let alone us. Whilst we may be able to watchfully cast an eye on the playoffs in terms of realistic expectations, all of this will depend on the type of signings we make and how Kevin Nolan can further gel his squad together. I would love Notts to push for automatic promotion, yet I would say that stability usually takes a few seasons and at this early stage it’s looking like we will be just another decent League Two team. A handful of exciting signings could easily change this, whilst a ‘real’ togetherness on the pitch and impact from us fans in the stands in terms of support may encourage a hard-working Notts County to exceed expectations. I noticed a friend's comment recently on Facebook which got me thinking. Byron Webster, the Millwall defender, had been quoted as saying: “Going up this way is the best way to it” – referring to his side's League One playoff final win over Bradford City at Wembley. There’s no denying that a trip to Wembley can't be an historic and grand occasion, yet if you aim to be one the division's best, you can’t rely on them. Notts fans who recall our own playoff final forays just need to cast their memories back to Brighton & Hove Albion - we know that they’re joyous occasions but on the other hand we then have the 2-0 defeat to Bradford back in 1996. Our track record in the playoffs stands at two wins (1989-90 and 1990-91) and two defeats (1987-88 and 1995-96), which pretty much sums up the 50/50 nature of the beast. Therefore, I would personally hope that we could recruit in strength and build to gain promotion automatically. However, if Notts were to find themselves in the playoffs, I know we would give it a good shot. We just shouldn't have to rely on them in order to return to League One. 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.
Joe Jones posted a topic in Jimmy Sirrel StandFour wins on the trot for Notts County, a 13-point gap between themselves and 23rd-placed Newport County (who are themselves doing well in all fairness, having won their last two), 10 points behind the top seven with 15 points yet to play for... I previously thought it would be too far-fetched to even think of a playoff tilt as much as a fortnight ago, but given how well Notts are playing, a little inkling in the back of my head is saying "well, stranger things have happened in football" (Leicester winning the title much)... Granted, the following five fixtures are quite tricky. Crewe are below us in the table but it's an away game, then just three days later, a home game with Portsmouth, who are hoping to seal automatic promotion, then Luton (both away and tricky as they're harbouring outside hopes of third place), then a home game with Blackpool, who themselves are hoping to make the playoffs, and finally a resurgent Newport who may or may not be banking on a win for FL survival. So not the best round of fixtures - the only team we would be eliminating in terms of hopeful playoff contenders is Blackpool, and they're all quite difficult, so I'm not going to get my hopes up too much - I'd be happy with a top-half finish, which is incredible considering the previous objective, from about 2-3 months ago, was "battle bravely against what appears to be certain relegation". But what is football without a bit of hope and drama? I'm certainly going to be enjoying the next few weeks - it's nice to have a little positive anxiety/drama as a Notts fan for once!