“Games are won and lost in penalty areas,” said Gavin Mahon following the Magpies’ 2-0 defeat to Stevenage on Tuesday night and it could not have been truer statement.
Stevenage were clinical in front of goal – Notts were not. That was the difference.
Following the hosts’ opener after just 18 seconds, Notts dominated the game and pushed Boro deep into their own half for long spells.
Countless balls were delivered into the home box and County came out on top in all areas of the stats – except for one: the scoreline.
“I’ve been around long enough to know that’s football, it’s like when we played Bury earlier in the season, when they dominated us and we ended up winning,” Mahon told Magpie Player.
“That’s what football’s all about, you’ve got to take your chances.
“You put everything into it, you head balls away, you defend as a team, you attack as a team - but it’s not just the attackers, we need to improve as a team going forward.
“It’s not as if the balls coming into the box aren’t of a good quality, because they are.
“It’s having that hunger and desire to get on the end of it.
“A couple of them in the first half, the wind was holding up and if it was half an inch lower I’d have scored and the same with Jeff as well, but that’s our luck at the minute.”
Mahon was encouraged by Notts’ overall performance and is confident that they can turn things around, starting with this weekend’s encounter with Crewe Alexandra at Meadow Lane.
He said: “What I would say is that there are a lot of positives to come out of the performance and we need to take that into Saturday’s game.
“I’ve played in teams that haven’t got as much quality as this team’s got and those teams have been successful.
“We’ve had strikers that have come up with 15 and 20 goals a season, which I think you do need if you are going to push on and be successful.
“Things aren’t far away and we’ve seen that in the performance.”
He added: “When you’ve had a setback and things aren’t going your way, you’ve got to pick yourselves up, individually and collectively as a team.
“We’ve got to start winning at home, the away record’s been good, which everyone knows, and it’s all about bringing those Notts County fans back at home and get this team driving forward again.
“I think it’s got the quality to do it and we need to start doing it between now and the end of the season.”
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