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Match Previews

PREVIEW: NOTTS COUNTY (H)

2 May 2019

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Swindon face Notts County at the County Ground this weekend with the Magpies facing the prospect of losing their status as the oldest Football League club.

The Nottinghamshire side head to SN1 two points adrift of Macclesfield who sit one place above them. The Silkmen face Cambridge who, like Town, have nothing to play for but pride; however, Sol Campbell’s side need only a draw because of their superior goal difference.

Richie Wellens will be looking to end the season on a high after two defeats against Crewe and Cheltenham have turned six games unbeaten into six games without a win in the space of two weeks.

The final fixture of the season is also the final game in the stellar career of Matty Taylor who is hanging up his boots following 20 years as a professional. 

The Oppo

The weekend’s game is easily one of the most important in Notts County’s history – a torrid season on the pitch has meant that after coming fifth in the division last season they face the prospect of exiting League Two at the other end of it.

Yeovil are confirmed as relegated but Notts need Cambridge and Swindon legend, Colin Calderwood to do them a favour and pick up three points with County needing three points at the County Ground.

Their recent form has not been incredible enough to say they have momentum behind them either – they’ve won three of their last ten. However, last weekend’s win over Grimsby gives them half a shot at survival.

Craig Mackail-Smith and a Harry Clifton own goal sealed a 2-1 victory over the Mariners at Meadow Lane.

Head-to-Head

26 Apr 2014        Notts County v Swindon Town    L              2-0          League One

13 Dec 2014        Notts County v Swindon Town    W            0-3          League One

07 Mar 2015       Swindon Town v Notts County    W            3-0          League One

12 Sep 2017        Notts County v Swindon Town    L              1-0          League Two

30 Dec 2017        Swindon Town v Notts County    W            1-0          League Two

27 Oct 2018         Notts County v Swindon Town    W            1-2          League Two

The Gaffer

Neil Ardley took the County job in November following the decision, by ‘mutual agreement’ to leave AFC Wimbledon 11 days earlier.

Ardley spent the majority of his playing career with the Dons between 1991 and 2002. He was part of the side that reached the heights of the Premier League in the 1992/93 season – this was his most prominent spell of playing with the South London side.

After almost a decade of being a more bit-part player he eventually left for Watford in 2002 making appearances  in both the League and FA Cup Semi-Finals during his three-years there.

Brief spells at Cardiff and Millwall followed before his retirement in 2007 – it was in Wales that he would start to forge his coaching career.

Ardley’s coaching preparations had started when he was just 24 but it was with the Bluebirds that he took his first steps managing the Academy and guiding several players into the first-team fold.

In 2012, he was appointed manager of Wimbledon where he guided the club to safety twice while also recording the clubs first ever victory over MK Dons in 2014. The next year, having snuck into the play-offs, Ardley and his side achieved promotion to League One beating Plymouth Argyle 2-0 in the Final at Wembley.

After consolidating in League One for two seasons, Ardley made the switch to struggling County saying the opportunity was one he ‘couldn’t let pass.’


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