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Match Previews

Preview: Exeter City (H)

Magpies host travelsick Grecians

20 January 2018

Notts County host Exeter City in Sky Bet League Two looking to extend their unbeaten start to 2018.

The Magpies have two wins and a draw from their three outings thus far and come up against an Exeter team which has won just one of their past 11 games away from home in all competitions.

Despite that poor form on the road, the Grecians remain fifth in the table, six points adrift of Notts.

Paul Tisdale's team, with the exception of the opening day of the season, have not been outside the play-off places in this campaign and will want to be one of the teams to emerge from the pack of seven, who are separated by just two points, below Notts.

Notts boss Kevin Nolan says...

“The 3-0 win at Exeter earlier in the season gave the lads a bit more belief. It showed we can be a match for anyone when we go somewhere and produce the performance we did that night. For me, it’s up there as one of the best this season.

“But they’re a good footballing side who try and do it the right way. It’s going to be a tough one, but it’s one I’m looking forward to - especially after last week, which wasn’t one for the purists, so to speak!"

Click here for more from the manager.

Exeter City manager Paul Tisdale says...

“They [Notts] are definitely one of the league pacesetters and it is a good barometer for us, especially away from home.

“We’ve been particularly poor away from home as of late so I suppose we’ve got nothing to lose in that regard.

“I think we back ourselves to improve on that and there’s no way better of doing that than against one of the top teams.”

Team news

Young midfielder Matty Virtue will hope to keep his place after going straight into the team following his loan move from Liverpool.

Fellow new signing Noor Husin could feature in the squad following a full week of training, while Shola Ameobi may be back as a starter following his substitute appearance at Sincil Bank last Saturday.

For the visitors, defenders Troy Brown and Luke Croll are on their way back from injuries but will not be available for the trip to Meadow Lane.

Fellow central defender Jordan Moore-Taylor's chances of featuring are rated 50/50 by Tisdale.

Dangerman

A popular figure among the Exeter faithful, Jayden Stockley rejoined the Grecians this summer, signing for a club record fee from Scottish side Aberdeen.

The move brought the 24-year-old back to a club where he played his best football during a nomadic career to date, which has seen him take in spells at 11 clubs thanks to nine loan moves during his time at AFC Bournemouth.

During one of those loan periods away from the Vitality Stadium in the 2015-16 season, the striker scored 10 times in 22 appearances and has carried on from where he left off at St James Park, scoring at a rate of a goal every other game since becoming a permanent part of Paul Tisdale’s squad.

The form in his temporary stay earned him the move north of the border to Aberdeen, but he was largely limited to substitute appearances and jumped at the chance to be reunited with Tisdale and don the red and white stripes once more.

We've met before...

Notts have a superior head-to-head record against the Devon side with 18 wins to Exeter's eight.

County won the previous meeting earlier this season 3-0 thanks to Lewis Alessandra's goal two minutes in and Jorge Grant's brace off the bench.

The Magpies are unbeaten in the past three matches between the sides but are without a win at home against the Grecians since Lee and Jeff Hughes struck in a 2-1 win in February 2012.

What are the odds?

Sky Bet have priced Notts up as 10/11 favourites to take all three points, while the Grecians are 3/1 to be the first team this season to come away from Meadow Lane with three points in Sky Bet League Two. The draw is 5/2.

Another 3-0 win for the Magpies against the Devon oufit can be backed at 14/1, with a 1-0 scoreline available at 6/1 and a 2-1 win at 15/2.

Lewis Alessandra was first on the scoresheet at St James Park earlier this season and is 11/2 to repeat the feat.

Jorge Grant, meanwhile, came off the bench to bag a brace and the hotshot midfielder is 15/2 to score twice again or 50/1 to go one better and register a first career hat-trick.

Notts are 11/4 to win the game with both teams scoring or 9/4 to win the game to-nil.

You can bet on the game here.

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