Both sides chasing third consecutive win

By Dane Vincent
Last updated : 11 October 2008

Reserved: McParland is keeping his feet firmly on the ground...
Back-to-back wins for the first time since November has re-instilled a belief in fans that has been missing for way too long.

Converting what was a slow start - despite remaining undefeated - into quite an impressive one by defeating Aldershot Town and Port Vale now makes things look much rosier.

Notts are now five points behind Exeter City in seventh place, following today's results, and supporters are starting to feel their early season optimism blossom.

Shouting from the rooftops has come back to haunt County in the past, making years of heartbreak that much worse by pumping fans full of false hopes.

Steve Thompson publicly declaring that his side were pushing for promotion halfway through the campaign two years back, only for it to tail off into a mediocre mid-table campaign is a prime example.

The club has been much more reserved this time around, keeping their outlook modest, lifting the weight of expectation to an extent.

Ian McParland maintained this stance when asked about a promotion push by the Nottingham Evening Post.

"Things can change very quickly because we have two tough matches coming up," he said.

"We have to keep our heads down and keep working hard.

"We are still a mile off being the finished article.

"The way we have been playing is encouraging, and I knew results would come.

"But we have still got a long, long way to go.

"A couple of defeats and we could be down near the bottom. Another couple of wins and we could be up there in the play-offs.

"There will be ups and downs between now and the end of the season. There are always lots of twists and turns.

"I am just hoping there will be more ups than downs."

If County are to become serious promotion candidates, Brentford will be a side that they have to prove themselves against.

The Bees have started impressively, winning five and losing one of their nine games played to date.

Just like Notts, they are on a good unbeaten run in the league, with their solitary loss coming on the opening day of the season away at Bury.

They are also searching for their third league win on the trot as well, having beaten Chesterfield and Macclesfield Town in their previous two outings.

Followed by a loss in the Johnstone's Paint Trophy, Brentford boss, Andy Scott

Sort it out: Scott wants his players to get back to their pre-season standards...
has warned his side about letting their standard slip.

Speaking to the Hounslow Guardian, he said:
"I'm delighted with the squad we have, but I wonder if some have let their personal standards slip since they were flying in pre-season.

"Some might feel I'm unjust, but that's a question I've got to ask. If they come up with the answers then we all win.

"I've never doubted their professionalism in training. They are fantastic lads, but it is a case of highlighting what needs to be done to be a successful professional footballer.

"You dictate what happens in your career and if enough people want to do well for themselves, we'll do well as a team."

This is definitely a match that could go either way, with both sides in a similar vein of form.

Adding to this is the extremely balanced past matches between the two, in which Notts have won 20, lost 22 and tied the rest of the 63 played against Monday's visitors.

Last term, both games ended equal, with draws at Meadow Lane (1-1) and Griffin Park (0-0) and it looks like the bookies could be expecting the same again.

Another win for Notts would see them achieve three wins in a row for the first time since March, 2007 when they beat Bury, Grimsby Town and Boston United, before stretching the run to four games with a win over Wrexham.

Notts. County Match Reports


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