Notts County Manager Shaun Derry spoke to the media on Thursday, to preview this weekend’s Sky Bet League 1 game at home to Crewe Alexandra.
Derry will have Liam Noble available for selection once again after he served a five-match ban recently and the Notts boss is delighted to have the midfielder back going into the weekend.
Asked how he felt Noble had coped with his enforced lay-off, Derry told the assembled journalists: “He’s not coped very well really, because he’s the kind of lad who wants to play week-in, week-out and I think he’s been a stand-out performer for us this season, so as much as he’s missed playing, I think we’ve missed him as well and it’s a great acquisition to get back.
“He is like a new signing in the window, he’s missed such a long time now, a large amount of games, that we’re thankful that he’s back in contention.”
The Notts boss refused to accept that his side were low on confidence going into the weekend though, after a run of six games without a win over a difficult festive period, and indeed is looking forward to getting back into action.
“I don’t want us to get carried away with a lack of confidence, because that’s definitely not in the camp, not what I’ve seen in these last two or three weeks anyway,” he added.
“We’re disappointed with the points ratio, of course we are, but I think everybody connected with Notts County realises what opposition we’ve come up against.
“Yeah, we let ourselves down last week, it was a poor display, a poor performance, but I don’t think I can say that many times this season and what I’d like to say is that we’ve got a run of games coming up and we are now looking for a points return.”
Notts ran out comfortable 3-0 winners when these two sides met at the Alexandra Stadium earlier in the season, but Derry is expecting a much tougher test from a side that have been rejuvenated in recent weeks.
“We did dominate that game, we had a fine night that night, but they’re a different beast this time,” he explained. “They’ve obviously come on the back of some really good results themselves.
“They’ve played against some bigger sides and done themselves justice so we know it’s going to be difficult, as are all the opposition that come to Meadow Lane.
“We’ve found it difficult at times to break down the opposition at Meadow Lane and that’s why I’ve gone for the certain type of signings that I’ve made, because I’m hoping, there’s no divine right, we’ve got no guarantees that it’s going to pay off, but I’m hoping that the signings that I’ve made are going to be the right ones.”
Subscribers can watch the full pre-match media session with Shaun Derry on Magpie Player.