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Positivity and confidence

8 August 2016

Notts County academy manager Mick Halsall says the Under 18s can take 'positivity and confidence' from their opening-day win.

Goals either side of the break from Dom Brownhill and Tamar Clayton-Naute were enough to secure a 2-1 victory over Scunthorpe at Highfields.

And Halsall believes the victory will benefit his team mentally.

He told nottscountyfc.co.uk: "It was important to get positivity and confidence into the players and hopefully they've gained that from the game.

"We felt we could have played a little more, but it's the first time in a while we've won the first game of the season.

"Over pre-season we made sure the boys were made aware they had to be organised and disciplined - and that's what they were.

"After the second goal I thought we managed the game well."

Match report by Dave Fells:

The Magpies' first opponents of the season were Scunthorpe United, who finished second last season in the league, so it would surely be a tough test for the young Notts academy players in their opening game.

It was a competitive match from the start, with both teams determined to impose themselves on their opponents.

Notts took the lead after only 16 minutes when skipper Brownhill got hold of a cross from Nathan Cobain just outside the area. His shot was blocked, but Brownhill collected the rebound and fired a hard shot just under the crossbar, giving the visiting goalkeeper no chance.

The game continued to be an even affair and it was no surprise when a spell of Scunthorpe pressure resulted in an equaliser on 26 minutes.

Straight afterwards, Clayton-Naute set off on a tricky run, beating two defenders only for his shot to crash on to the cross-bar before being cleared away. Towards the end of the first half Notts had a spell of dominance which saw Clayton-Naute and Nathan Cobain both fire efforts just the wrong side of the posts.

Notts began the second half well and on 53 minutes regained the lead. Harry Gibbons went on a good run down the left wing, beat his full-back, picked his head up and pulled the ball back perfectly for Clayton-Naute to side-foot home.

An even game ensued with both teams taking their turn to apply pressure but Notts, in a good all-round team performance, held on to their lead to start the season with a win over a good Scunthorpe side.

Notts: Searson-Smithard, Anstey, McCartney, Brownhill (C), Ebanks, Richards, Clayton-Naute, Osborne, Gibbons (Robinson 80'), Cobain (Campbell 87'), Howes (Dunn 70')



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