Tomorrow sees Paul Hurst’s Mariners make the trip to Meadow Lane to take on Notts County in our first away match of this year’s Sky Bet League Two season (3pm).
The trip is also our first return to the scene of a memorable National League Play-Off encounter in May 2022 when a stoppage time equaliser from Gavan Holohan set the Mariners up for victory with Manny Dieseruvwe scrambling the winning goal in the final minute of extra-time.
Hurst’s team go into this weekend’s match off the back of a 0-0 draw at Blundell Park in the opening match of the season against AFC Wimbledon with the visitors’ goalkeeper Alex Bass pulling off a number of sterling saves.
That draw preceded a 2-0 Carabao Cup First Round defeat at Mansfield Town on Tuesday with the Mariners team showing five changes from the start.
Jake Eastwood, Niall Maher, Alex Hunt, Kamil Conteh and Harry Clifton were the five to drop out of the XI with only the latter taking to the field off the bench on Tuesday.
Otis Khan and Donovan Wilson will continue to be absent with Hurst having confirmed that he is looking at the week running up to the Walsall away match as a potential return date.
Led by Luke Williams, the Magpies returned to the EFL this season after a penalty shoot out victory over Chesterfield in the National League Play-Off Final at Wembley.
Already boasting the fifth tier’s top scorer of last season in the shape of Macauley Langstaff, the Nottinghamshire club made arguably the most eye-catching signing throughout League Two this summer when they sealed the signature of striker David McGoldrick.
The 35-year-old scored 22 goals in League One for Derby County last season and his signature is something of a statement of intent for Notts County with many tipping them as one of the favourites for promotion out of the fourth tier this term.
Their season, however, started with a bump as an away trip to Sutton United last weekend saw them hit by a 5-1 defeat. Already trailing to a second minute goal, County saw goalkeeper Aidan Stone sent off after just fifteen minutes and trailed by two at the break.
McGoldrick scored Notts’ only goal of the afternoon but that came after a further two goals for the hosts and Sutton scored a fifth late on to get the Magpies’ season off to a poor start.
A Carabao Cup defeat to Lincoln City followed on Tuesday with Saturday’s hosts no doubt keen to give their season a boost with a home victory as they look forward to a first Football League match at Meadow Lane since the end of the 2018-2019 season.
That Play-Off victory in May 2022 was the third time the two teams met throughout that campaign with the Mariners winning away at Meadow Lane in February courtesy of Ryan Taylor and Luke Waterfall goals in a 2-1 win.
County defeated Town 1-0 at Blundell Park in October with a last-minute Ruben Rodrigues goal.
The two teams have faced each other 85 times in the past with the Mariners victorious on 36 occasions compared to our hosts’ 28.
Edward Duckworth will be the man in the middle for tomorrow’s match in what will be his first Mariners match.
He will be assisted by Alan Cresswell and Grant Taylor.
Due to broadcast restrictions, tomorrow’s match will only be available to overseas viewers on Mariners TV. Match passes are available HERE.