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Ahead of our encounter tomorrow, Jacob from the Notts County Mad site kindly stepped into the hotseat to answer our questions....

Two home wins, and the amazing late comeback at Bournemouth, have helped ease what appeared to be a worrying start. Are you feeling a lot more comfortable about your chances now for the season than you were a couple of weeks ago ?

Not really, our start to the season wasn't actually any worse than last season when you take the cup matches into account and we went on to walk the League Two title, so I was always pretty comfortable with things. It's been a fairly schizophrenic start for us, at times we've been absolutely woeful, Oldham away and most first halves, but in the second halves of games we've come alive and played quite well. It all seemed to come together late on at Bournemouth and then against Yeovil last week.

Its been a crazy 15 months at County since the mystery of the Middle East investment and Sven's involvement. Was there always fears from the beginning that something wasn't right, or did the fans fully embrace at first the possibility you could be in for something really big ?

You can't say that there weren't fears, but we were going into unchartered waters with something pretty much unprecedented in football. It looks ridiculous now and it's easy to say 'how did they not realise?', but when you've been fighting against relegation to non-league for years it's not hard to get over excited. As time went on, realisation started to hit home and by the end it was all a complete mess. But everything turned out okay.

Did the decent results on the pitch play a big part in keeping under control supporter concerns of what was happening off the pitch ?

To a certain extent, but when Peter Trembling and his ghosts left we were actually struggling to hold onto a play-off place and weren't playing particularly well at all. The incredible FA Cup run probably helped more than the league form at that time, but it was our amazing run after Ray Trew and Steve Cotterill came in that won the title.


Now that normality has resumed, how was Munto Finance and Sven's involvement viewed in hindsight ?

It's just bizarre, but you won't find anyone who's disappointed it happened. We've come out the other end a far more enjoyable club to support than we were at the start, although that is more by luck than judgement. Sven seemed a genuinely top man and has been back to the club to do presentations and things since, although there is obviously a real sense of bitterness towards those who were properly involved in bringing it together.

Should the FA have undertaken a bigger involvement during the period of uncertainty of the ownership ? Do you feel that clubs' should come under greater regulatory scrutiny ?

The FA have to take a certain amount of the blame, but in truth we feel let down by just about everyone over the whole thing. Our own Supporters' Trust did no due dilligence on the deal and just went for it, probably due to the fact that they'd run the club into such a state that they had no choice. A lot of the winding-up orders that surfaced actually existed before Munto. There's a lot of other people and organisations who failed to do what they were supposed to, but it was people who were supposed to be our own fans messing us about that hurt the most.


Lee Hughes will naturally attracts some controversy. How were supporters split when it emerged he had signed ?

They weren't split particularly I don't think, it depends how you view the crime that he committed. We all have our opinions and, for me, Hughes' crime wasn't done maliciously (such as Marlon King), but it's obviously still something that's quite difficult to accept. The fact he's been a model professional for us and always has time to talk to fans, sign autographs and has said how much he loves it here has probably helped.

Is Lee proof that club supporters will pretty much forgive anything as long as they do the business on the pitch ?

To a certain extent but, like I said, it's not as if he's caused any trouble or been any kind of bad influence in his time at Notts. He obviously has a real rapport with his teammates and is the first player to come and applaud our fans, whatever the result, which people respect. Everyone will have differing views on whether someone like Hughes should continue to play football, but I think the esteem he is held in by fans of Oldham and Notts is definitely a positive.

Lee is the most high profile County player, but is he the most important ? Who should we be keeping an eye out for ?

He's one of the most important as his performance against Yeovil showed, but our most important player by far is Ben Davies. We turned down numerous offers from Derby towards the end of the transfer window for him and he showed why with a stunning performance in the 4-0 win. His dead ball delivery is one of the most dangerous outside the Premiership and without him we look devoid of creativity.

What are the realistic expectations for County this season ?

Just to consolidated in this division I think. There's been talk from inside of pushing for the play-offs and we have a squad who can do that with a lot of luck and if they gel, but most of us would be happy with a nice, quiet year I think.

What's the first thing that comes into your head in relation to Charlton Athletic ?

Not a lot, really. With us having gone through the worst period in our history and you (presumably) the best, there's been world's between us so younger fans such as myself haven't seen us meet before. I guess just the obvious things, like Curbishley and the time in the Premiership.

Where do you expect us to end this season ?

I'm not sure, obviously having made the play-offs last season you'll be looking to do so again, but what i've read from fans hasn't been especially positive. I think you'll be upper mid-table at very worst though.

What sort of reception will Jonnie Jackson get from County fans ?

I doubt he'll get any real reception as such, maybe the odd boo but nothing more than that. He never really showed anything with us, when he did he always gave his all but playing a similar role to Davies he never performed well enough to come close to taking his place in the side. He was also on stupid wages thanks to Munto so I think everyone was pretty pleased to see the back of him, but with our best wishes.

How do you see the game going ?

It depends which Notts side turn up, if it's the one from Yeovil and the last half an hour of the Bournemouth game then i'd be disappointed if we left with nothing, but it could be a long afternoon if the side from Oldham and most of the first halves turned up. I think everyone would be pretty happy with a point, but you never know.

Our thanks to Jacob for giving up his time at short notice.


  • interesting, but Lee Hughes did nothing malacious?
  • Think this is the third one in the trot where the person answering the questions has had a dig at the Supporter's Trust as well.

    Cheers for the insight Jacob.
  • I didn't realise that Mark Kinsella plays for Notts County now.
  • [cite]Posted By: LargeAddick[/cite]interesting, but Lee Hughes did nothing malacious?

    The supported said, "We all have our opinions and, for me, Hughes' crime wasn't done maliciously (such as Marlon King), but it's obviously still something that's quite difficult to accept. The fact he's been a model professional for us and always has time to talk to fans, sign autographs and has said how much he loves it here has probably helped."

    My interpretation is that the supporter didn't think it was premeditated, unlike Marlon King's crime.
  • edited September 2010
    Will Kinsella be playing for them tomorrow?
  • Be nice if we could get some oppo fan with a bit of humility and a sense of humour to do these, this one sounds a right miserable kanute.
  • edited September 2010
    Q so marco were you surprised to win £20m in the lottery?

    A no I knew I would one day, I think I deserve it.

    Q were you surprised at pulling that super model in the local pub the other night?

    A with looks like mine it was bound to happen.
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