Notts County 1-0 Halifax Town (National League) 28.01.23
Notts County stretched their unbeaten league run to a club record equalling 19 games on Saturday, with a comfortable 1-0 victory over Halifax Town at Meadow Lane.
Macaulay Langstaff’s 23rd league goal of the season shortly before half-time proved to be the difference between the two sides, as he pounced on an error from Jamie Stott and rounded Sam Johnson in the visitors’ goal.
Langstaff had earlier had a goal ruled out for offside, before the Magpies spurned several chances to put the game to bed in the second half.
The three points takes Notts level on points with Wrexham having played a game more than the Welsh side, while the struggling Shaymen slip to 17th.
Notts began the game in menacing fashion and had the ball in the back of Johnson’s net as early as the 8th minute. Ruben Rodrigues flashed a terrific cross into the six-yard box, where Langstaff was on hand to nod home, only for the linesman’s flag to be raised on the far side.
The early pressure from The Magpies continued in the following minutes as Adam Chicksen and Aaron Nemane both saw efforts blocked behind.
Johnson was forced into further action in the 25th minute as he turned aside Chicksen’s first time strike at his near post.
The visitors’ goal was coming under near-constant threat with chances coming thick and fast for Notts. This time Langstaff could only drag a shot wide on the spin after a cutback from Kyle Cameron.
Langstaff would make no mistake with his next chance though. The league’s top scorer pounced on an under hit back-pass from Halifax centre-back Jamie Stott in the 38th minute, rounded the onrushing Johnson and composed himself before finishing past the recovering Stott with ease.
There was still time for another Notts chance before the half-time break. In the 43rd minute, great work down the left once again from Chicksen and Sam Austin saw the latter cross onto the head of Jim O’Brien, but the 35-year-old could only send his header over the bar and into the Kop.
The second half continued in the same vein as the first and Johnson was called upon again in the 53rd minute as he brilliantly tipped over an effort from Jim O’Brien on the stretch.
The visitors’ first real foray forward came in the 56th minute as Tylor Golden found space on the left-wing. However, his resulting cross was too deep for Jamie Cooke and the ball ran out for a throw-in.
The respite for the Halifax backline didn’t last long though, just three minutes later Nemane was pulled back as he chased a pass inside the box, only for Notts to have their strong appeals for a penalty turned down by referee Matthew Dicicco.
The game was nearly put to bed in the 78th minute as Rodrigues capitalised on another errant pass from the Halifax backline but opted to shoot rather than square for substitute Cedwyn Scott and saw his effort saved well by Johnson.
The visitors came out of their shell somewhat in the closing stages of the game but ultimately failed to create any chances of note and The Magpies were able to close out the game and secure a crucial three points.
Luke Williams’ Magpies will have the chance to break the 93-year-old club record on Tuesday night when they travel to face Solihull Moors.
*Article provided by Evan Shaw (Notts County Correspondent).
*Main image @Official_NCFC Macaulay Langstaff celebrates his winning goal.