Peterborough- Earlier on...

Last updated : 05 January 2004 By Rob Davies
The game was played on a Bank Holiday Monday on the 25th of August and it came at a time when Notts went into the game at Meadow Lane with a distinct lack of confidence, to say the last.

Shane McFaul- Was handed his full debut
With it being the fourth game of the season, Notts went into the game pointless and goal-less at the bottom of the table, following away hammerings at Bristol (5-0) & Swindon (4-0) and a home defeat against Wrexham (1-0).

Peterborough had hardly faired much better, picking up one win out of 3, leaving them in 17th spot, meaning this match was viewed very much as a relegation battle.

Notts' manager Billy Dearden buckled to fans pressure and for the first (and last!) time, named Mark Stallard, Clive Platt and Paul Heffernan in the same team.

Notts also featured 17 year old Irishman Shane McFaul (remember him?) in the starting line-up for this match, where he very much impressed.

The game was soon turned on its head in the 17th minute when after a good start, Notts were reduced to 10 men, as Paul Heffernan was sent-off for a supposed elbow on Posh defender Sagi Burton, who went down like he'd been shot in an attempt to get Heff sent-off. He succeeded. Please remember this tomorrow Notts fans, and give Burton (one of the dirtiest players around) the warm welcome he deserves.

Sagi Burton- Got Heff sent off last time
It was always going to be an uphill struggle for The Magpies after that, and this especially proved to be the case as Mark Stallard hobbled off injured later on in the first half.

Notts' best chance of the match fell to Clive Platt, but his attempted lob on Mark Tyler was saved by the Posh keeper.

Boro's winner was eventually scored just before half-time by veteran striker Andy Clarke, played through by the now departed Leon McKenzie, Clarke cooly lobbed the on-rushing Mildenhall from the edge of the penalty area.

Notts almost got themselves back in the game late on with subsitutes Darren Caskey and Tony Hackworth both coming close, but it wasn't to be as Notts' goal drought continued.

Notts' team that day (3-4-1-2): Mildenhall; Fenton, Barras, Richardson; Baldry, McFaul (Hackworth), Baraclough, Riley (Nicholson); Stallard (Caskey); Platt, Heffernan.

Not Used: Garden, Francis.

This game is going to be the most important of the season so far for The Magpies, it's a six pointer in every sense and Notts have to play the football we all know they're capable off in this game to overcome a Posh side that have the worst home record in the league.