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  1. Sky Sports twice tipped Notts County for the League Two title over the course of the season, which we have discussed on the forum. With just eight games left, they've downgraded their prediction in what I would assume is the last predictor of the season, and the Magpies are now tipped to finish fifth. This is what they say: The stats-based Sky Sports Predictor is tipping Accrington to go on to win Sky Bet League Two this season. Accrington's incredible rise has seen them jump above long-time leaders Luton at the top of the table, and the predictor is backing them to go on to win the title and promotion. The Hatters and Wycombe, who currently sit second and third, have been tipped to hold onto those spots, while the play-off places look set to be filled by the current incumbents of Mansfield, Notts County, Exeter and Coventry. And here is their final look table. Thoughts on this latest prediction?
  2. An entertaining and informative interview from Sky Sports with Notts County veterans Jon Stead and Shola Ameobi, alas not-very-affectionately named "The Old Guys"... The Old Guys: Jon Stead and Shola Ameobi Q&A Jon Stead and Shola Ameobi may be well into the twilight of their careers, but both are still going strong for Notts County as they push for promotion in League Two. Ahead of their FA Cup clash with Swansea on Saturday, Stead, 34, and Ameobi, 36, sat down with Soccer Saturday to discuss their motivations to keep playing, their proudest moments and more... What motivates you both to keep playing? Stead: "When you've played for as long as we have you've got to have that hunger and appetite to keep playing every day and still improve. When you get that and also have good results then it makes you want it even more." Ameobi: "For me it's the challenge of putting your body through what you have to do to compete with these younger guys at the weekend. "But it's a challenge we both relish and I think it's important to still have the hunger to want to keep improving and to try and help the team. It's a great challenge we both enjoy and we're still excited to be out on the pitch every week." How do you keep improving at this stage of your career? Stead: "I'm probably not going to get any quicker, that's for sure! But I think we can get better learning from the younger lads. The game is always evolving and there are always new aspects to it. It could also be changing your own game slightly and using your experience to help some of the lads. "There's also stuff we can pick up from the manager as well. He is just about older than me, but that's not the case for Shola! But the manager [Kevin Nolan], [his assistant] Alan Smith and Shola are people I can learn off because they've all been there and played at the top level for a lot longer than I have." Ameobi: "Obviously as you get older you can't quite get to the balls you could before, so I think it's a case of being smart as well. "You're always learning and obviously as Jon said you're giving back as well. The younger players enjoy playing with us because of the experience we've gained over the years and it's important to set an example for them." What are the proudest moments of your career? Stead: "From being a Huddersfield fan as a kid to making your debut in the first team, that was obviously a massive thing for me. "Also scoring the winner for Blackburn against Manchester United at Ewood Park, although you may have to dig deep to find that one! That was obviously a highlight for me coming straight from the old Division Three to the Premier League. It was all a bit of a whirlwind and a pinch yourself moment." Ameobi: "For me playing at the club I've supported since I was a boy in Newcastle was something I never took for granted, and to play for that long was a joy and something I really cherished. Playing for your boyhood team is always special and to do it for that long was really exciting for me." How much longer do you see yourselves playing? Stead: "As long as the hunger is there and I'm enjoying it, that's the main thing for me and Shola. We'll keep playing if our legs keep going! But I think both of us have a good couple of years left in us yet. Ameobi: "At the end of the day you have to put your body through a lot, and it's important that if you're going to succeed at anything that there has to be that excitement and enjoyment, and I think we've both definitely got that. Long may it continue!"
  3. Sky Sports has officially tipped Notts County to win the League Two title this season! They've run all of the teams through "a system called Elo, originally set up to rate chess players. It takes into account form, who your team still has left to play, and how well a team has done in previous seasons." This is how the Sky Sports Predictor see the final L2 table: What do you reckon? Personally I think it's flattering to be held in such esteem by the biggest sports outlet in the world... but at the same time, let's hope there's no "Manager of the Month" type curse at play. Kevin Nolan is the best manager to tell the players: "yeah that's nice, but no. Ignore and just crack on with your job." But we as fans can gloat... especially considering who's in last place and how far down Mansfield are!
  4. Kevin Nolan was on Sky Sports last night having a go at match punditry. Did anyone tune in and if you did, what did you think of how he did? Found a couple of clips on Twitter of him if you fancy having a look.
  5. This week, the biggest sports news company in the world officially backed Notts County to win the League Two title. The Sky Sports League Two Predictor believes that the Magpies will finish top of the standings ahead of the likes of Luton Town, Coventry City and the other big sides in the division. My initial reaction was yet again to pinch myself, as the 2017-18 League Two campaign really has been something much different than previous seasons and it’s something which I hope isn’t just the start – I hope it’s the beginning for more to come. It also seems like Notts might be turning a small corner in the way that people view the club, I actually feel like we have returned to being the family club we've always strived to be and youngsters are seeming to buy into this also. Being in a good position for promotion from League Two will naturally help, yet I feel we are becoming a fairly trendy side to support and although I would point out that it’s early days, I actually feel much of this is down to the takeover of Alan Hardy, as without him we wouldn’t have the right type of young manager at the helm. Kevin Nolan certainly adds a lot of interest and I think this is shown even more so by how he’s linked within various clubs managerial positions. But yeah, seeing the club tipped for promotion by the sports giant Sky – it seems so surreal. Even seeing the club return back to first place is something that seems different, as usually we don’t have this much luck – in fact the recent draw against Stevenage would have perhaps seen us fall down the table previously. Yet we have managed to remain top, even after a fairly frustrating dry spell too – so this says a lot about the current ambitions for the club. I’ve been saying for a while just how much difference the hard work that goes into the club makes, and if we as fans are right – well, being where we are right in November is an excellent place to be. Quite a few people have said to me that Notts haven’t given up a lead once we reached this point in the season, and I very much hope they’re right. Christmas will be the spell where we will know more, yet I have faith that we can maintain pressure on promotion this season. Provided we can continue to grind out results, yet improve and move away from the relapses within the starts to games. I’m not going to dwell on the route-one stuff, as I feel it’s being said more than enough now but we do look very good passing along the turf. And as I mentioned earlier, I hope that this point is the beginning for more to come. I honestly feel like the foundations are good and people care passionately about the club – not just in terms of us fans but the people who continue to restore the pride and traditions of this club. Stability seems like a long time due, and if we continue to see players recognised within the Team of the Week – along with Kevin Nolan in contention for the Manager of the Month award(s), than surely Sky are onto something with their backing. Although it’s flattering to be tipped for the League Two title, we still have more than half the amount of games left to be played and that’s a long way to go. I’m just mindful of the expectations and added pressure, I just feel like it doesn’t change what we left to do. Nolan and his players just have to crack on with each game as they come, whilst avoiding disruption. I’m quite content to enjoy the roller coaster remaining positive with regards to where we might finish, facts like these are nice but play no motivation towards me getting carried away at all. 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.

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