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The Nottinghamshire Derby Is Back!

For the first time since 2019, Mansfield Town and Notts County go head-to-head for the bragging rights in Nottinghamshire as the two sides look to further stake their claims as promotion favourites.

This mouthwatering game has been in the making for four years, and finally, the long-lasting rivalry can be resumed as the Stags travel to Meadow Lane for the first Nottinghamshire Derby of the season.

League-leading County have done fantastically since their promotion from the National League via the play-offs as they look to continue their strong home form with the Magpies winning all five of their league matches at Meadow Lane this season.

The Stags are not far away from their Nottinghamshire rivals and have a point to prove with their unbeaten record once again on the cards as they face the final team from the current top seven in the process.

County Storm To The Top
Credit: Noots County FC

Since their promotion back to the Football League, Luke Williams’ side have adapted quickly to the demands in League Two and have firmly met expectation about being a serious promotion candidate.

Notts County’s brilliant run was slightly halted by a shock 5-4 defeat at the hands of Colchester United, however, they returned to winning ways only a couple of days later with a 3-1 victory over Swindon Town.

With that being said, they were in for another shock at the weekend as they travelled to Cumbria to face mid-table Barrow at the SO Legal Stadium.

Experienced striker and County Academy Product David McGoldrick opened the scoring in the 14th minute as his penalty beat Bluebirds goalkeeper Paul Farman to give the Magpies a 1-0 lead.

Heading into the final 10 minutes, Barrow won a penalty as their dominance paid off with Dean Campbell finding the back of the net from the spot to earn Pete Wild’s side a home point against the league leaders.

In midweek, County made plenty of changes for their clash against Derby County in the EFL Trophy with the Rams coming out 2-1 victors after a Louie Sibley double led them to all three points.

However, Luke Williams’ mind was fully set on the Nottinghamshire Derby which is probably the reason why he made so many changes to the squad and to rest his starting XI players ahead of the important League Two clash.

Draws Keep Adding Up For The Stags
Credit: Mansfield Town FC

After their 0-0 draw to Hollywood stars Wrexham, Mansfield Town welcomed AFC Wimbledon to the One Call Stadium as the amber and blues faced yet another side in League Two’s top seven.

Nigel Clough’s side were overall the better side with 20 shots throughout the 90 minutes, over double the number of shots attempted by the Dons.

However, it was the visitors that had the best chance in the first half as Omar Bugiel was fouled by Lewis Brunt which saw the referee award a penalty for AFC Wimbledon.

James Tilley stepped up to take the spot kick but fired the ball straight at Christy Pym who stood firm to put the ball onto the crossbar and catch it after it dropped into his grateful clutches.

George Maris also had a brilliant chance to break the deadlock as he was played one-on-one with the goalkeeper, however, his effort was straight at Alex Bass in the Wimbledon goal.

With another 0-0 draw, the Stags entered the EFL Trophy with Clough making eight changes from the side at the weekend. A last-gasp goal from Callum Johnson secured a 3-2 win for Mansfield Town and got them back to winning ways ahead of the big game this weekend.

Form Guide
Credit: Mansfield Town FC

The hosts are one of the most in-form teams in League Two with three wins, one draw and one loss from their last five games. County have been in brilliant form all season, losing just twice from their opening 12 games this season in the league.

14 goals scored from their last five games is an impressive haul, however, they have only managed to keep one clean sheet in that time and have conceded 10 goals in the process.

The stagnating Stags are now the only team in England to remain unbeaten in all competitions and they will hope to continue that fantastic run of form and extend the streak to 17 games.

However, in recent matches, Mansfield Town have become a side that has been synonymous with drawing games as the Stags have recorded draws in four of their last five matches.

With three of those five games ending with a clean sheet, the amber and blues superb defence will look to keep County’s attacking force out.

Credit: Mansfield Town FC

A game close to five years in the making, the Nottinghamshire Derby has seen 16 games since the formation of the EFL League Two in 2004.

In those 16 games, the Stags have won exactly half of those games with eight victories to their name compared to the Magpies’ two with the remaining six games ending in a draw.

The troubling stat for the amber and blues is they have been unable to win against County in their last three league attempts with their last victory at Meadow Lane coming in August 2015.

A total of 40 goals have been scored in the 16 league games between the two sides, an average of 2.5 goals per game, creating what will be another brilliant Nottinghamshire Derby as a new chapter begins.

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