A close Vanarama National League fixture held at Huish Park saw Notts County leave Somerset with all three points.

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It was no secret entering the game that both sides were struggling in terms of form, meaning the importance of leaving the fixture with maximum points was not lost for either side.

Although both sides needed the win for the sake of ending a poor run of form, the first fifteen minutes of play lacked any real attempts on goal. With both sides trying to force their way into counterattacks, the expectation of the close game was present between both sets of fans. This expectation of a close game is constantly present throughout visits to Huish Park from Notts County, as the previous two visits resulted in a 2-2 draw and a narrow 1-2 victory for Notts in a FA Trophy tie.

Notts open the scoring

Despite a lackluster opening fifteen minutes, it was the visitors who dealt the first blow just two minutes after the conclusion of this period. Referee Gary Parson played a fair advantage after winger Aaron Nemane was taken out by a retreating opposing midfielder. The advantage allowed ball-winning midfielder Matty Palmer to retrieve the loose ball before dispatching a sharp pass into the feet of playmaker Ruben Rodrigues, whose drive towards goal was followed up by a well hit, low and hard strike into the bottom left corner of Grant Smith’s goal, giving Notts County an all-important lead.

A Golden opportunity to double the lead for Notts County

After taking the lead, the visitors had a golden opportunity to double their advantage. Winger Cal Roberts’ infield run created the wide-man some welcomed space to explore and fire towards goal. the goal-bound effort was well saved by Grant Smith before falling into the feet of a lurking Aaron Nemane. However, the winger’s first touch proved costly and allowed Yeovil to intercept and clear the danger, avoiding any further punishment.

A Chance for a late first half blow

The game seemed as it was petering out towards the end of the first half, but the visitors seemed to have other ideas. Just as it was felt that referee Gary Parson was seconds away from blowing for the interval, Notts County’s high press was rewarded, and they found themselves charging towards goal with a man advantage. The trio of Kyle Wootton, goal

scorer Ruben Rodrigues and assister Matty Palmer looked as if they were destined to deal the home side a late blow before the break. However, when it came to firing towards goal, Kyle Wootton saw his effort blocked. The half time whistle followed, and the away side left the field to a healthy round of applause from the traveling Notts faithful.

The second half began, and the visitors seemed to pick up from where they left off in the first half. Goal scorer Ruben Rodrigues turned provider as he set through the dangerous Cal Roberts, who’s shot fizzled just wide of Grant Smith’s goal.

Yeovil fight back

This opportunity seemed to have sparked some fight from the home side, who followed up with two glorious chances of their own. The first opportunity falling to substitute, Ben Seymour. Fellow second half substitute Charlie Wakefield’s quick and clever feet proved a problem for the visitors, and this was made evident by his ability to beat three Notts County defenders during the same run before striking towards goal. However, the midfielder’s well-hit attempt was pushed to safety by loanee goalkeeper Anthony Patterson.

The second golden opportunity for a much-needed equaliser for Darren Sarll’s side fell to Matthew Worthington. A careful, well-worked counterattack from the home side fell nicely for the midfielder, who seemed to be in on goal for a one versus one. This however was until a heroic last-ditch interception from the retreating Jim O’Brien who managed to hook the ball away from Worthington’s striking boot and as a result of this, Notts County cleared their lines.

Game, set and match

In immediate response to the concession of two golden opportunities squandered by the home side, Notts County increased their advantage on the fall of the eightieth minute. A delightful in-swinging corner delivered by Matty Palmer was met firmly by the head of earlier goal scorer Ruben Rodrigues. The header traveled at some speed beyond the reach of goalkeeper Grant Smith, completing a brace for the Portuguese midfielder.

Despite late attempts of sparking a late fightback, it was Notts County who resulted as 0-2 winners at Huish Park

The result of this Vanarama National League fixture held at Huish Park sees Notts County climb one place from tenth to ninth, just a single point outside of the play-off places. Their horrid short run of form in the league saw the Magpies drop from fourth to tenth in the space of 14 days.

After a huge win for Ian Burchnall’s side in Somerset this weekend, the run of three straight defeats avoided increasing to four, and now the Magpies can look ahead and forward confidently to their Emirates FA Cup fourth qualifying round fixture against Tamworth. This fixture is to be played next weekend prior to Notts County returning to Vanarama National League action the following weekend against Stockport County.

As for Yeovil Town, defeat to Notts County sees them fall one place in the Vanarama National League to fifteenth. Despite disappointment this weekend, Yeovil Town welcome Altrincham to Huish Park this upcoming Tuesday evening for another league fixture. a win in this game would take Darren Sarll’s side up to the highest possible twelfth place, this being dependent on the number of goals the game is won by.

Team line-ups:

Yeovil Town: Smith, Moss, Staunton, Hunt, Robinson, Worthington, Gorman (Rose 65’), Pereira, Knowles (Wakefield 46’), Lo-Everton (Seymour 56’), Quigley.

Notts County: Patterson, Chicksen (Kelly-Evans 70’), Cameron, Brennan, Brindley, O’Brien, Palmer, Nemane (Mitchell 80’), Rodrigues, Roberts, Wootton (Francis 88’).

Venue: Huish Park, Saturday 9th October 2021. 15:00

Attendance: 2,438

Referee: Gary Parson.


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