We’ve taken a number of small steps towards normality this Summer, but here’s an enormous leap towards the future.
Wrexham’s first competitive home game in front of fans, 510 days after the goalless draw with Eastleigh in March 2020, which turned out to be our last match before lockdown. While the capacity will be restricted by the continuing work done in the Wrexrent Stand, it’s going to be an occasion to relish, with the rest of the ground sold out and opponents who will be looking to challenge for the title.
Notts County have been a constant presence at the top end of the table since their relegation to the National League in 2019, and manager Ian Burchnall has built on the foundations laid by Neal Ardley to craft a side which will target to spit this time around.
Kyle Wootton remains a formidable force up front, and he had a couple of bruising encounters with the Red Dragons’ defenders last season, the match at Meadow Lane culminating in him receiving a red card.
Alongside him, exciting pace and flair are offered by Cal Roberts and Ruben Rodriguez. The former was signed amidst much excitement, but the promising forward’s progress was seriously hampered by injury. However, he’s back to full fitness now and hit the ground running as the trio enjoyed a memorable first day of the season at Barnet.
The North London outfit suffered a rough week off the pitch, and theur suffering was compounded on the Saturday when The Magpies triumphed 5-0 at The Hive!
Last Saturday they sought revenge for the defeat to Torquay United in the play-off semi-finals last season which brought their campaign to an end, and
HEAD TO HEAD
Two late 1-0 defeats to Notts County last season did decisive damage to our promotion hopes, and it was in keeping with our recent record against The Magpies for them to deal us such a telling blow.
We’ve won just one of our last 8 games with County, losing 5, and defeat today would be an unprecedented 3rd consecutive loss to them, and a first time we’d lost to them in back-to-back home games.
Last May's clash at The Racecourse saw Jake Reeves score the only goal after 26 minutes, capping a superb opening period from the Magpies. Wrexham responded well, but couldn't force an equaliser.
Our last victory over County was in April 2008. We were in the midst of a futile attempt to avoid relegation to the National League, and claimed victory through a late Neil Roberts goal. If we’d lost the end of our time in the Football League would have been confirmed: as it was, our fate was confirmed at Hereford three days later.
We beat them just once in our last seven Football League matches, and in total we’ve won just four of our last twenty-eight games against them.
The only other home win we’ve enjoyed over County this Millennium came on Boxing Day 2001. Waynne Phillips got an early goal but it looked like the game would end in a 1-1 draw until Lee Trundle hit the winner in the 87th minute.
Considering the run of positive results County have enjoyed against us this century, it’s hardly surprising that they’ve enjoyed 4 league doubles against us, while we’ve managed just one.
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Our biggest win over The Magpies was in March 1963 when Brian Whitehouse got two and Ken.Barnes, Ernie Phythian (above) and Clive Colbridge also struck in a 5-1 win.
Barnes, Phythian, Sammy McMillan and Karl Connolly are our top scorers against The Magpies, with Gary Bennett, Arfon Griffiths (below), Steve Watkin, Whitehouse and Don Weston one goal behind.
Wrexham 0 Notts Co 1 (Reeves 26)
Wrexham: R Lainton, F Kelleher (T French, 52), T Vassell, J Davies, S Pearson, C Green, D Jarvis (K Marsh-Brown, 81), L Young, R Hall-Johnson, G Omotayo, D Angus (J Ponticelli, 66) Subs not used: P Rutherford, C Dibble
Notts County: S Slocombe, A Chicksen, R Brindley, C Miller (D McCrory, 77), D Kelly-Evans, M Ellis, Ruben Rodrigues (E Sam, 67), J O'Brien, K Wootton, M Doyle, J Reeves Subs not used: E Boldewijn, R Griffiths, B Turner
Referee: Rebecca Welch
Wrexham – Omotayo
Notts County – Rodrigues, Wootton
Red Cards: None
James Jones’ 225th career appearance.
Rob Lainton’s 150th career league appearance.
Tyler French’s 50th career appearance.
REFEREE: Thomas Parsons (3rd season in National League)
Wrexham's record under Parsons: P1 W0 01 L1 (6/10/20 Solihull Moors (a) 0-1)
Notts County's record under Parsons: P2 W0 D1 L1