Notts County were defeated 3-1 by the Gibraltar national side on Tuesday night in front of a lively audience at the Victoria Stadium. The visit provided a worthwhile test for Keith Curle’s side, who were involved in a highly physical friendly.
The 3G pitch provided a fast-paced affair, with Notts mixing up their play. Both the quick passing approach and the direct options were put to good use, creating openings for both Jeff Hughes and Enoch Showunmi in the early stages.
Gibraltar took the lead late into the first half via a superb finish from Joseph Chipolina. The midfielder made room from 25 yards out to swerve the ball past a fully stretched Liam Mitchell into the bottom-left corner.
Notts drew level shortly into the second from Alan Sheehan’s dangerous near-post corner. Last season’s top scorer Jeff Hughes timed his run perfectly and was able to squeeze a header through the defenders on the goal-line.
Another great finish put the hosts back in front, when Lee Casciaro fired crisply into the bottom-right corner from the edge of the box, leaving Mitchell with no chance. The goal meant a lot to the player, who tore off his jersey to celebrate with the ecstatic home fans.
Victory was confirmed with 10 minutes left on the clock, as Roy Chipolina connected with a delightful centre to head forcefully into the inside netting. Neal Bishop came close to getting Notts back into the match with an effort that was cleared off the line late on but the result meant that the Jubilee Cup would be awarded to Gibraltar at the final whistle.
Due to the synthetic pitch, a number of County players were rested for the fixture as a precaution. Curle announced that they are expected to make a return in Thursday evening’s friendly with UD Marbella.
Notts County Starting Line-up: Mitchell, Regan, Smith, Liddle, Williams, Boucaud, Bishop, Labadie, J Hughes, Showunmi, Campbell-Ryce.
Subs From: Pilkington, Campbell-Ryce, Judge, Fuentes.
Highlights and post-match reaction from this match will appear on Magpie Player on Wednesday.
The club would also like to thank supporters for making the trip to support their team. Fan photographs will be available on the official Facebook page.