The Nottinghamshire Derby gets its second outing this weekend, Saturday 3 February (KO 15:00), when Mansfield Town welcome local rivals Notts County, to the One Call Stadium.
It’s been a little bit of a mixed campaign for both the Nottinghamshire clubs, Mansfield enjoying highs of an incredible, unbeaten start to the season, whilst County’s return to League Two has seen them leading the way for a period.
At Mansfield, they are currently sitting in third place and just a point off second place Wrexham, Nigel Clough’s side having not won since New Years’ Day away to leaders Stockport County, a spell stretching through four matches (drawn two, lost two).
County on the other-hand, they’ve had the highs of leading the league, spending eleven weeks in the top two, however, results of late has seen them not only slip to seventh, but also lose manager Luke Williams who, having had a brief spell at Swansea City a couple of years back, returned to the Welsh-based, Championship club and was replaced by former Wealdstone boss, Stuart Maynard.
LAST TIME AROUND
Maynard’s stock at Meadow Lane will increase if his County charges can at least avenge the defeat suffered, on home turf, back in mid-October, the Stags then romping to a 4-1 success which stretched, at the time, their unbeaten start to the season to an impressive seventeen matches.
County took the lead that day as well, David Crowley with one of his eleven goals this campaign opening the scoring after just three minutes, smashing a loose ball past Stags shot-stopper, Christy Pym, from close range.
Louis Reed levelled proceedings on twenty-four minutes, shooting past Sam Slocombe and into the bottom corner having been found by George Maris, the two rivals going in level at the break; a back-and-forth start to the second was punctuated when the visiting Stags slammed their foot of the accelerator with twenty minutes remaining.
Three goals in a little over ten minutes saw Clough’s charges put their hosts to the sword when first, Baily Cargill to head home a corner and give the Stags the lead for the first time then, minutes later, two became three as Aden Flint reacted quickest to finish from close after a goal-bound header from Lucas Akins came back off the upright, before Akins wrapped up a convincing win with their fourth, nine minutes from time.
Much has changed since that success, for both clubs; at the time, victory extended the Stags’ unbeaten run, which has long-since gone, and it also saw the visitors move up to third in the table, a point behind their local rivals, the two sides at the time battling Stockport County for leadership bragging rights.
The Stags have however, for the past twenty-one weeks, been in-or-around the top five, slipping to seventh (where County currently sit, seven behind Mansfield), once; form of late though has been a bit off, for both clubs.
Mansfield are currently on a run of no win in their last four outings (drawn two, lost two), with their last success being that 2-0 win at Stockport, goals coming from George Maris and Davis Keillor-Dunn, whilst Notts County are on a run of no win in three (drawn two, lost one), since their 5-0 success at home to Morecambe in late December, Macauley Langstaff with a hat-trick.
Worth a mention for County of late has to be that recent, ten-goal thriller at Grimsby Town, the two sides drawing a barnstormer of a game, 5-5, Langstaff netting alongside braces from David McGoldrick and Aaron Nemane
There’s been twenty meetings between Mansfield and Notts County over the past two decades, County winning just the four, and the Stags ten; even in the last ten games between the two, it’s been all about the Stags, they scoring an impressive 22 goals over that spell compared to County’s nine goals – County have won just one in recent times, a 1-0 success at Meadow Lane in mid-February 2019.
AMONG THE GOALS
Both of these clubs can, and have done all-season long, scored plenty of goals, County being rather prolific in front of goal shown by two of their stars firing double figures.
Macauley Langstaff has been involved in 26 goals (21 goals, 5 assists) and David McGoldrick 18 goal involvements (12 goals, 6 assists), in addition to those two is David Crowley, he being involved in 15 goals (9 goals, 6 assists) – however, conceding is a worry for the Meadow Lane side, shipping some 53 goals in 28 league matches (there’s been 114 in games involving them thus far).
With the Stags meanwhile, it’s been all about Davis Keillor-Dunn, he being involved in 19 of their goals (14 goals, 5 assists), the nearest to him in the Stags’ scoring charts being Lucas Akins, he having scored 9 goals himself, whilst George Maris has 13 goals involvements (8 goals, 5 assists) – the Stags though, they don’t concede many with just 24 dropped in their 28 games this season.
So, looking ahead to Saturday’s Nottinghamshire Derby, then expect plenty of goals (it’ll be goalless now), and quite possibly that of Keillor-Dunn and Langstaff on the score-sheet.
*Article provided by Peter Mann (Senior Correspondent).
*Main image @mansfieldtownfc last time out was very much Stags day in the sun.