Rovers v Magpies

Rovers v Magpies
Posted by Ian
Prenton Park
Saturday, February 23, 2019 - 03:00 PM
Until: Saturday, February 23, 2019 - 05:00 PM
(Adjusted for timezone: Europe/London)
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Boz

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Next up at PP a game against L2s bottom side. Notts had a good run of form halted by a 1-4 thumping at the hands of Newport. It's very tight at the bottom and the visitors seem to have recruited well in the transfer window, bringing in experience in the form of midfielder Michael Doyle and forward Craig Mackail-Smith, who got the winner against Mansfield in the recent Notts derby. This season's already seen us lose 3-2 at Meadow Lane, where McNulty was rested for the Cup replay. One of the worst games I recall seeing was a 0-1 to Martin Allen's Notts County, where they used every trick in the book to secure the win. Hoping for a much better game than that.

In the absence of injuries, expecting the same line-up for Rovers as midweek. I presume they'll bring a decent number, while the absence of a home game for Red and Blue Scouse may result in a bigger home turnout. I'm guessing a crowd well into 6k and feel we'll drop points in a score draw.
 
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As Boz says, County are a different animal to the team that beat us back in December, a game we should have won but threw away with kamikaze defending. County have a big wage budget and have brought in Jim O'Brien in addition to Doyle and Mackail-Smith, signings which are as, if not more, impressive than our own January dealings.

I think the game will be ultra-competitive, but a much better spectacle than the 2011 horror show Boz references above. I think it will be an incredibly tight match and is too close to call, but we obviously need a victory if we are serious about a play off challenge. A win could theoretically see us back in the top seven at 5pm, incredible when you consider our poor form until the last couple of weeks.

I agree it will be a 6,000 plus gate, probably with 500 plus from Notts (over 400 away tickets have been sold already).
 
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It's very interesting that a home game against the league's bottom team can cause so much pessimism, but I agree that this game is a potential banana skin. However, if we can't beat Notts County at home, we probably don't deserve to go up. We desperately need the three points to maintain the momentum and get into the top seven before the end of March, when we face an incredibly difficult month. After a visit to Newport County, we will play four of the current top five, then finish the season with with a game at Crawley in early May.

Incidentally, while we owe County no favours after recent history, I do feel it would be sad to see them drop into the NL. The Magpies are the oldest professional club in the world and are the only one to maintain continuous membership of the Football League since it started in 1888. Of the twelve original members, one became defunct early on. The other ten are still going strong in the top two tiers, but all have had spells in the Premier League.
 
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BBTC, County have got good players and have recently beaten Mansfield and FGR (away), and drawn with Lincoln. They underachieved massively in the first half of the season, but given the quality of their squad and their current form, this game will be as difficult as the matches against top seven sides you refer to above. This is not the same as a match against Morecambe or Macclesfield.

However, I also hope Notts stay up, and Port Vale for that matter.
 
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Ian

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Agreed, this will be a tough one after recent recruitment's. My fear is the players underestimating the opposition. We talk about consistency, so now we need to come away with points from this one to keep the run going.
 
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BBTC, County have got good players and have recently beaten Mansfield and FGR (away), and drawn with Lincoln. They underachieved massively in the first half of the season, but given the quality of their squad and their current form, this game will be as difficult as the matches against top seven sides you refer to above. This is not the same as a match against Morecambe or Macclesfield.
I acknowledge this and I did say this match was a potential banana skin. My point is not that we should win but that we must win if we are to rtain momentum and thus have a good chance of reaching the play-offs, given the difficult run-in.
 
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the displays from the Lincoln & Exeter games seem a life-time away I still recall the Yeovil & Swindon games and realise how inconsistent we can be, having said that micky,s recent recruitments have to me brought a touch of class to the team so I,m hoping we can keep the present good work going.
 

bigmart

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Notts had been improving but came down to earth with a bump in midweek, I think we will win 2 1 with a crowd around 6500
 
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Sorry I’ve been quiet this week . We are having laptop problems and will be fixed next week . Hoping for another good performance. We still need other players to start scoring more often . Norwood has had a superb season . And I for one will hate it when he leaves for nothing in the summer. We will miss him . Hope and pray we get to keep him but cant see it . Think it will be 2-0 or 3-1
 
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Look at it this way, AM. He cost us nothing and he has given us four years of great service including making one and scoring the other of the goals which got us back in the league. In fairness, he deserves the best he can get at the peak of his career. So, if he does go, let us thank him and wish him well. We owe him a lot, he owes us nothing.
 

Ian

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Getting a bit nervous for this one now. After their defeat in midweek, they'll want to put that right and go on a winning run again. They seem up for it and I think will be coming to Prenton Park looking for maximum points. Hope it's an entertaining game nevertheless.
 
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Look at it this way, AM. He cost us nothing and he has given us four years of great service including making one and scoring the other of the goals which got us back in the league. In fairness, he deserves the best he can get at the peak of his career. So, if he does go, let us thank him and wish him well. We owe him a lot, he owes us nothing.
I agree with your sentiments BBTC. However, I think Norwood does owes us something to that extent that we, or more specifically Brabin and Mellon, have transformed his career.

At Forest Green Norwood was playing predominantly on the wing, and it was actually Brabin who recognised that he should be deployed as an out-and-out centre forward. Mellon has made an even bigger contribution by improving his all round game, to the extent that he is almost unrecognisable from the player we had four years ago. Micky has done the same with Monthe, Caprice and others.

Going back on topic, I am also getting nervy, but I do think we will win the game tomorrow.
 
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I take your point, RLC. You can add Cook to that list of players we've developed. Sadly, we tend to lose them all on free transfers.
 

Boz

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It makes sense having an extra defender on the bench, though you have to feel for Gilmour who doesn’t make a sub spot now.
 

rossb07

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Gilmour has picked up an illness, he’d be on there if fully fit I’m sure.
 
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Boz

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Rovers had the better chances, good save from CJ and a ball rolled along the goal line by Caprice not converted. Norwood kept quiet though. One or two strange decisions from the ref too. Hope not going to be a flukey away win.
 
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