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Former Notts County loanee and Aston Villa star Jack Grealish has spoken of how playing under so many managers has impacted on his development and feels that only three managers have trusted him. The 22-year-old burst onto the scene on loan at Meadow Lane during the 2013-14 season, his performances in tandem with fellow loanee Callum McGregor delighting the Black and White Army during an otherwise poor campaign. Grealish then returned to Villa and took his form from his Notts loan spell into the then Premier League club's first team, but injuries, lack of form, minor off-field issues blown out of proportion by the gutter press, upheaval in the dugout and all-round malaise at the club, which culminated in relegation, set the talented youngster back. A freak kidney injury ahead of the 2017-18 season then risked compromising Grealish's career but he has bounced back in true style, establishing himself as one of Villa's standout performers under Steve Bruce and helping the club to the upper spots in the Championship table. During an interview with the Telegraph, Grealish said: “I feel I’m definitely in the best form of my career. I’ll be honest, in my career I feel like I haven’t been given enough runs of games. I’d play one decent game and then chucked out the team. “I’ve also had eight managers in four years, if you include [England under-21s head coach] Aidy Boothroyd and Shaun Derry during my loan at Notts County. That’s ridiculous really. It’s not an excuse but it does affect you. “I think only three managers have trusted me, [Tim] Sherwood, [Roberto] Di Matteo and Bruce. “It’s been my best season and I’ve been the most consistent. People think I’m a No.10 but my favourite position is playing on the left of a three.” Bruce recently compared Grealish to Paul Gascoigne and labelled the Solihull-born winger ‘the best player in the Championship’. “That was great to hear but I didn’t feel any pressure with it at all,” added Grealish. “It gives me a lift and I know the manager is a truthful guy and wouldn’t have just said it. To be mentioned in the same sentence as Gazza was unbelievable in itself, though I know I’m nowhere near that level yet. “The gaffer said in pre-season he wanted to build the team around me and that’s what you like to hear. To have that belief and trust is massive. I want to repay him by getting Villa promoted.” 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 was sad to see Shaun Derry lose his job as Cambridge United manager but has tipped the former Notts County boss to be back in the game sooner rather than later. The Magpies head to the Abbey Stadium on Tuesday to face the U's, who are currently being managed by Joe Dunne on a caretaker basis. Cambridge have experienced an upturn in form under Dunne, having won two games under the 44-year-old and Nolan believes they will be tough opponents. “It will be tough because Cambridge have hit a bit of form,” Nolan told the Nottingham Post. “I was gutted to see Shaun lose his job and I haven’t had chance to call him yet, but I will. We are close off the field so it’s unfortunate what happened. “But their team are doing well and we have to go there and put a stop to that. “I don’t think Cambridge have changed too much because when I last spoke to Dezza in the office after the game at our place, he was talking about how he had to patch up a lot of things. “He was finding it difficult because a lot of his experienced and top players were out. “But he will be back in the game no doubt because of how good he is as a manager. “We have done our homework on them and nothing much has changed because the majority of the players were all under Shaun anyway. “They might tweak a few things here and there, but very rarely will it massively change. “But they will be full of confidence because they have won two on the bounce. “It’s going to be difficult, but if we stick to our game plan I feel we can can come away with another positive result.” 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.
Shaun Derry has spoken fondly of the "class" relationship he had with the Notts County fanbase and is looking forward to returning to Meadow Lane. The 40-year-old began not only his playing career at Notts, but his managerial career too, taking the reins in 2013. Derry masterminded the Great Escape, helping the club stay up in League One in 2014, but was dismissed in March 2015 as the Magpies could not repeat the feat the following season. Now managing Cambridge United, who visit Meadow Lane today, Derry reminisced about his time at Notts and expressed his eagerness to be back in front of the "terrific" fans. “I was immensely proud of what we achieved in keeping the club up,” he told the Nottingham Post. “Everybody had written us off but everybody pulled together and we managed it against all the odds. “We then carried that momentum into the next season, when despite it being quite precarious behind the scenes, we got into the top four. “But myself and Greg knew that we were hitting crazy heights and the expectation to keep that going just wasn’t realistic. “Then in the January window, we lost four quality loan players and they just weren’t replaced in terms of like for like. “But, even then, at no point was the club in danger of being relegated and that happened after I left. “Still, it was a massive learning experience for me and the relationship I have with the fans there was a different class. “When I’ve been back they’ve always afforded me a terrific ovation and I am looking forward to seeing them again. “There are lots of Notts fans among my family and friends and they will be at the game on Saturday." 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.
Head to head Notts County and Cambridge United have met 27 times in their history. The first meeting came on Boxing Day 1970 at Meadow Lane, with the Magpies earning a 4-1 win. Notts hold the advantage in the head to head, with 11 wins, 7 draws and 9 defeats against the U’s. Recent form is not good, however - we've lost our last four meetings against Cambridge. The last meeting was on 2 January this year at the Abbey Stadium, and we lost 4-0. Notts County are on a run of five League Two matches without a victory against Cambridge (D1 L4) having previously won three on the bounce in all competitions. Cambridge have won back-to-back away Football League matches against Cambridge for just the second time; they have never done so on three consecutive trips. 43 points from 22 games is Notts County's best return in a league season since 1987/88 (3rd tier) and nearly twice the tally of points they had won at this stage last season (22). Cambridge have scored just seven goals in their last 12 League Two matches, failing to score in seven of these games. History The club was founded in 1912 as Abbey United before taking the name Cambridge United in 1951. It first competed in the Football League in 1970 and stayed there until relegation in 2005, nine seasons in the Conference following until climbing back out of non-league. Cambridge have had two spells in the league's second tier, and reached the quarter-finals of the FA Cup twice and Football League Cup once during the early 1990s, the club's most successful era to date. United's highest ever finishing place in the Football League is fifth in the Second Division during the 1991–92 season, competing in a season-ending four team playoff for the final promotion slot to the Premier League's inaugural season. The club is based at the Abbey Stadium on Newmarket Road, approximately 1.86 miles east of Cambridge city centre. The stadium has a capacity of 8,127, made up of terracing and seated areas. During their days in Division Two, with John Beck at the helm in the 1980's, the club earned a reputation for bizarre training methods and "dirty tricks" to make their opponents feel ill at ease. These included freezing cold showers for his own players, dirty changing rooms and deflated kick-about balls for the opposition and long grass in the corners of the pitch to slow the long balls into those areas, allowing the U’s forwards to reach them. Beck carried on his dirty tricks even after leaving to take charge of Preston North End – taking nine of the Cambridge United players with him. He was not the only famous manager at the club, with Ron Atkinson taking the club from Fourth to Second division and Ex-England and Derby County centre-half Roy McFarland also sitting in the hot seat. Before their entry into the League, a local animal sanctuary had an escapee and it was found grazing on the pitch at the Abbey Stadium. This lead to the moose connection with the club, and in the club shop you can buy a range of moose souvenirs to show your allegiance to the U’s. Famous alumni include Dion Dublin and Luke Chadwick, while famous fans include football commentator Gary Newbon and Tom Findlay of Groove Armada. And connecting the two clubs – none other than former Notts manager Shaun Derry, now a the helm of the U’s. Team news Adam Collin is back in training and rebuilding match fitness after suffering a knee injury in October, but Saturday's match comes too soon for the goalkeeper. Club captain Michael O'Connor remains a long-term absentee having suffered a major knee injury in April. Jonathan Forte, Lewis Alessandra and Rob Milsom all stand by in hope of recalls. Cambridge boss Shaun Derry goes to his former club with his future on the line and he could make changes. Striker Uche Ikpeazu is available again following a one-match suspension. Last Saturday's last-gasp loss to Newport means United have just one win in eight games, while they are the lowest scoring side in the division and Derry has only been assured of his position for the Christmas period. Ade Azeez played 90 minutes on his first start following three months out with a calf injury. Derry named just four substitutes against Newport and could be short of options, with Gary Deegan and David Amoo expected to miss out again. Share your thoughts about this Stat Attack piece 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.
Shaun Derry is returning to Notts County this weekend with his Cambridge United side, and at PON we wanted your opinion on the following: Could Derry have been more of a success if he had the resources and support that Kevin Nolan has at present with Alan Hardy at the helm of the club? Let's get your thoughts.
Notts County assistant manager Richard Thomas has urged caution against a Cambridge United who come to Meadow Lane in poor form. The U's, managed by former Magpies boss Shaun Derry, come into this weekend's match 13th in the table on the back of three straight defeats. Thomas, however, believes Cambridge's bad form has been more a case of bad luck and missing key players, but expects them to be more dangerous than their current status. "I've been to watch Cambridge a couple of times this season and they're a really good side," Thomas told the official Notts site. "I think their league position belies what they offer. "They might have underachieved, but with Cambridge I think it's to do with availability of key players through suspension or injury. "It looks like they haven't been able to put out their top individuals consistently, which is why they might have stumbled to this point. "But we're only halfway and they're absolutely a team that can put a good run together post-Christmas and be right up there. "There are no doubts about what they can do but, after their recent results, they might come here and look to protect and keep the game tight. "They might also come right out of the blocks and get at us. You've got to prepare for every eventuality." 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.
Hello and welcome to episode 36 of the Pride of Nottingham PONcast, presented by Chris and JJ. In this week's episode we discuss Notts County's League Two draw with Grimsby Town - why couldn't the Magpies break down their opponents? We also look ahead to the weekend meeting against Cambridge United, the 23rd game of the season and an encounter against ex-Magpies boss Shaun Derry's current side. We then talk about Derry's time at Meadow Lane and whether things would have been different had he been given the resources that Kevin Nolan has at present. In addition we review the season so far, including what we deem to have been the standout match and who we think has been the best player, and discuss the club's FA Cup shirt sponsorship with William Hill. All this and more only in episode 36 of the Pride of Nottingham PONcast! Share your thoughts about this PONcast 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. 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 manager Kevin Nolan is expecting a tough game on Saturday when Shaun Derry's Cambridge United visit Meadow Lane for their League Two clash. The former Magpies youth product returned to NG2 as manager in November 2013 and helped conjure up the Great Escape at the end of that season. However, Derry was sacked in March 2015 and has since taken over at Cambridge where the U's are six points off the top seven. “We’ve got a tough one coming up against Cambridge,” Nolan told the Nottingham Post. "They lost on Saturday but they will come here and respect us. “Shaun Derry will be coming back and I am sure he will be wanting to prove people wrong here. "He’s got a lot of people who think he was unfortunate to lose his job during the time he was here. “For me, it’s about making sure we are at it all week. It’s at home, it’s the next game and we are looking to get back to winning ways.” 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.
Matt Tootle has expressed his pride with Notts County's impressive home form this year and believes Meadow Lane can truly be deemed a fortress. The Magpies could end the year with just one defeat at home in the league, depending on how they get on with Shaun Derry's Cambridge United this Saturday. County's home record is the best outside the Premier League, testament to the improvements made by Kevin Nolan and Alan Hardy. “When I signed in 2016 I came in and said this place should be a fortress,” he said. “It wasn’t for six months, but then the gaffer came in, and straight away he said we would turn Meadow Lane into a place where other teams won’t get anything. “He made that clear. The only team this year to have got a result in the league was Portsmouth and they were the champions of League Two last season. That says it all and about how well we have done. “It is a great achievement. It’s a credit to us and it’s just a shame we lost one because I have OCD and I would have liked it to have been zero.” 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.
What's been happening in League Two over the last week? Here is Pride of Nottingham's round-up of the biggest League Two news from the last seven days. - Talented Coventry City winger Jodi Jones, 20, will miss the rest of the season with a cruciate ligament injury after being taken off on a stretcher in last week's draw with Stevenage. - Cambridge United boss Shaun Derry revealed midfielder Gary Deegan played three matches with a broken foot before finally succumbing to the injury, which is expected to rule him out for several weeks. - Former Crawley Town head coach Dermot Drummy died aged just 56, with his son Joe confirming the tragic news on social media. - Former Chelsea, Coventry City, Queens Park Rangers, Plymouth Argyle and Cambridge United full-back Allan Harris passed away aged 74. - Mansfield Town have begun work on a £2m training facility in Pleasley, which is expected to be completed by the start of next season. - Crawley Town head coach Harry Kewell insists that he 'loves the club and everything about it', a week after an incident in which he appeared to square up to one of his team's fans after an away defeat. - Swindon Town defender Ben Purkiss was elected chairman of the Professional Footballers' Association, taking over over from Sheffield FC player Ritchie Humphreys as the head of the football players' union. - Crewe Alexandra midfielder Ryan Wintle, 20, has signed a new two-and-a-half-year contract with the Cheshire club. He has made 11 appearances for his side this season but is currently out of action with a stress fracture of his tibia. Share your thoughts about this news roundup 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.
Well folks, I am absolutely thrilled to be able to tell you, in case you've been hiding under a rock this afternoon, that NOTTS COUNTY ARE STAYING UP!! It was a bumpy ride, and at one point, it really seemed like everything that could have gone wrong was going wrong, but things eventually worked out and the end result is that, despite being dead and buried as far back as six weeks ago, we will now spend another season in League One. Oldham Athletic were the team that stood between us and finding out our fate, between us and the Great Escape. The final result stood at 1-1, but with the home side taking the lead midway through the second half and our relegation rivals Crewe Alexandra and Tranmere Rovers leading in their respective games, we were staring into the abyss. We were relegated. But then, we were given a chance. A penalty. And Alan Sheehan, arguably the team's best performer this season, did what he had to do with calm and precision. He put away the penalty for the equalising goal, which saw us come out of the drop zone. Tranmere ended up ultimately losing 2-1 to Bradford City, thus giving us a three-point safety cushion, and when the final whistle went, the scenes of jubilation from the Black And White Army - all 3361 of them - were cathartic, intense and joyous. With everything that took place today, it almost makes the actual match action seem irrelevant, but nevertheless, it wouldn't be a match report otherwise! Hayden Mullins recall by Birmingham City meant that Gary Liddle dropped back into defence, partnering young Haydn Hollis. On-loan midfielder Josh Vela lined up in the centre alongside Curtis Thompson. The first shot of the game fell to the Magpies, as Jimmy Spencer had an effort following an assist from Ronan Murray. The former Huddersfield man, however, was off target. Jamal Campbell-Ryce was a constant threat on the flanks, and in the eighth minute, set up Murray, who sadly fired wide. The two combined again in the 37th minute, and Murray's resulting half-volley did better this time, having to be deflected out for a corner. By this point, both Crewe and Tranmere were leading in their games, and as it was, Notts would only stay up on goal difference. Skin of their teeth would have been an understatement. Towards the end of the half, Oldham were in the ascendancy, with Bartosz Bialkowski having to be at his best to thwart a dangerous chance from Jonson Clarke-Harris. Hollis then had to produced a stunning goal-line clearance following another effort by the same man moments later. The half-time whistle offered little solace to the away fans, because things were still too tight with the other results being taken into consideration. Shaun Derry must have thought so too, and he must have delivered a rousing team talk, as the Magpies were invigorated come the start of the second period. Spencer's header into Murray's path just after the restart set up a tantalising one-on-one situation between the Irishman and Paul Rachubka, but the goalkeeper came off best, his instinctive save keeping the scoreline goalless. Moments later, a JCR cross curled over the Latics goalkeeper, but right-back Connor Brown was at hand to make a last-gasp clearance. In the 68th minute, Notts were staring into the abyss. They had a foot in League Two. They slipped back into the relegation zone when Adam Lockwood connected with a Gary Harkins free kick, his header looping past Bart to put the home side a goal up. The Crewe and Tranmere results, meanwhile, remained the same. It could have been even worse moments later, because James Dayton was able to latch onto a ball from Clarke-Harris, but Bart made another spectacular save to keep the hosts' goal tally down to just the one. And then, the lifeline. JCR's cross was handled by Jonathan Grounds, a penalty was awarded, and Alan Sheehan duly stepped up. Rarely had a single penalty kick been so important in the history of Notts County Football Club, but the Irishman kept his cool and smash the ball into the top-right corner, much to the delight of the 3361 Notts supporters. Things would get even better for the visitors, as Lockwood was sent off following a desperate tackle on Spencer and Bradford turned the scoreline around against Tranmere. Eventually, the final whistle went, to signal the end of the game and the end of the season. And crucially, Notts County ended the 2013-14 season in 20th place, when just as far back as six weeks ago, we were all but relegated. Well, what a season. What an utterly insane odyssey of a season. More ups and downs than a rollercoaster. But all's well that ends well, and next season, we will be in League One once again! I would like to wish all Pride of Nottingham fans and followers a very enjoyable summer, safe in the knowledge that we've survived the unsurvivable! Thank you for reading our match reports and enjoying the site content! One more time... COME ON YOU PIES!!!
Is the Hardy Era the Real Deal? In the summer of 2009 I received a text message from my dad informing me that BBC Radio Nottingham had just reported that a Middle Eastern consortium were close to completing the purchase of my beloved Notts County Football Club. What followed was numerous statements of intent which included the record breaking signing of Kasper Schmeichel, the unveiling of Sven Goran Eriksson as Director of Football and promises of Premier League football within five years. We dared to dream. And that we did – in abundance. We waved £20 notes in the faces of visiting supporters, we sang Sven's name from the Kop and we followed in massive numbers all over the country. What a difference to the 2008/09 season which saw us graced with a strike partnership of Sean Canham and Spencer Weir-Daley. It was a pipe dream which of course, turned into a worldwide talking point – for all the wrong reasons. In between now and the collapse of Munto Finance was the ‘Trew Era’. What started so positively ended so badly. As Notts Fans, I think the vast majority believed that Ray Trew always had the best of intentions for our club – he put his hand in his pocket, he provided managers with big budgets and always promised the world to his supporters. Is this what we needed? Did we need big promises of Premiership strikers? Championship football? This, that and the other? Its difficult to envisage what the reaction of our growing fan base at the time would have been if Trew would have earmarked his intentions as stabilising and steady business growth instead of making unrealistic promises which ultimately, he failed to deliver. His stubbornness to hire proven managers proved to be his ultimate stumbling block – especially towards the end of his tenure – with appointments of novices Chris Kiwomya, Shaun Derry and Ricardo Moniz eventually saw us relegated back to where 2009 all began. By the time of Moniz's sacking, Notts fans had very little patience left and Trew's ‘Football Manager Dream’ was very close to being in tatters. Then without doubt – the final nail in the coffin had well and truly been smashed in – in the form of Jamie Fullarton – the less said about that the better. Mark Cooper and John Sheridan were arguably the best options available at this point but the underlying issue was clear – the problems were higher up the food chain. Then welcome Mr Alan Hardy. What a transformation you have made to our football club. Within weeks, Hardy recognised what would make our football club start ticking again. The Fans! He understands what as football fans, we all want – honesty, transparency, desire, passion, communication and most importantly of all; a clearly set out, aligned and carefully structured direction to take this football club forwards again. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realise what Alan Hardy’s intentions are. Do things the right way, put energy into the community, grassroots, give the fans what they really want and start forming a relationship between the product and its customers. The reaction from not just Notts fans, but the community as a whole has been remarkable. Our average attendance under Alan has doubled already under his tenure and the team have responded magnificently, albeit to coincide with brilliant match day offers. Most importantly however, we feel proud to be fans of Notts County again. Alan Hardy has engaged in a way to build trust with the fans. He has been transparent. He hasn’t promised big money signings, he hasn’t promised Championship football. What he has done, he has engaged in a way that has been passionate but honest and realistic. He has identified the need to get the fans back through the gates which is what ultimately, matters most. Currently, everything is positive; second form team in the division, unbeaten home record, heart and desire being shown from the top down to the players, free pies, reduced match day tickets and a new vibrant and positive match day experience. That’s been achieved by simple communication, listening and gaining a mutual respect with the supporters. However, It’s crucial that we stay grounded, and remember that football can change ever so quickly, and live in hope, that when the road becomes bumpy, which it will, we remain strong, united and continue to pull in the same direction. Hardy has created a real buzz - we are excited to not just go to Meadow Lane, but to travel away in numbers, to have a feeling of not crumbling when the first goal goes against us, to see heart and fight from the touchline and the players again, is a joy to behold. That touchline fight of course comes from one man. Welcome to Notts County Kevin Nolan. Nolan and Hardy clearly have an aligned approach on how to take this football club forward. The unity that has been created in such a short amount of time has been breath-taking. Forget the CV’s. Forget management experience. Forget past promotions. When you have a man in your corner that demands respect, loyalty, trust, effort and a real desire to fight for this football club – the rest is easy. We are a League Two outfit. We don’t need a Jose Mourinho on the touchline, we need someone that understands what makes our team tick and what the fans really want. Alan Hardy identified the type of character to take this club forward immediately and has got his first appointment absolutely spot on. The past five years have been tough, loyalties have been tested, patience has ran thin, but the future looks bright. The future looks exciting again, and finally, once again, its time to start being proud to be a Notts County fan. See you all at Stevenage – COYP. 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Notts County's hopes of keeping Callum McGregor have received some encouragement from Celtic boss Neil Lennon. The Magpies retain a strong interest in the Hoops midfielder, whose loan deal expired last week. McGregor was in the stands to watch the 2-1 home win against Sheffield United at the weekend and even trained with the rest of the squad ahead of that victory. The 20-year-old's performances for Notts have attracted the interest of other clubs but Lennon appears open to the idea of an extended stay with Shaun Derry's side. "We are quite happy with the situation there and the reports coming back are very positive" said Lennon. The Magpies' League One rivals Wolves were on Monday linked with a Â£750,000 swoop for McGregor. Wanderers' interest in the Scotland Under-21 international was later backed up by the player's representative Kenny Moyes, although Moyes went on to say that 'no firm offer' had been made. However, Celtic are not looking to sell. When asked about the possibility of a permanent deal, Lennon said: "Not at the minute. "The reason we put him out on loan is to get him first-team experience. What he has done is set the bar for the rest of the young players who we want to maybe go out on loan. "As I said, the reports coming back are very positive. "He has been linked with Wolves - he has been linked with plenty of clubs. But he is our player and ideally we would like to bring him back in the summer and see how he has progressed." McGregor is the Magpies' leading scorer this season, netting 12 goals in 27 appearances since joining the club in August. http://www1.skysports.com/football/news/11095/9119000/magpies-given-hope-on-mcgregor? --- Well, isn't that good news!? Obviously it's still at the speculative stage, but surely with the blessing of the manager, there is nothing to stop McGregor coming back until the end of the season?