Nigel Clough, the manager of Mansfield Town, anticipates that capitalizing on scoring opportunities will be pivotal in the upcoming East Midlands derby against Notts County. Clough, the Stags’ boss, believes that success in this highly anticipated match will hinge on effective finishing. Despite boasting the best defensive record in League Two, Mansfield Town has scored just four goals in their last four games, while Notts County, the league leaders, have already netted 27 goals in their first 12 matches.
Clough stated, “It will likely come down to finishing. Chances will be created during the game due to the playing styles of both teams, and it will come down to who can convert them. It will be a closely contested match, possibly with some early nervous moments. I hope it’s an entertaining game for everyone. We’ll aim to play with the same intensity we displayed from the first minute against Crewe.”
Clough acknowledged that Notts County presents specific challenges with their expansive style of play, and he emphasized the need for strong defensive performance. He also expressed his desire to maintain their unbeaten streak in a positive manner.
The match will be broadcast live on Sky Sports due to the international break in top-level football, and it is expected to draw a capacity crowd. Having experienced and managed in intense derby matches with clubs like Forest and Derby, Clough understands the significance of a victory for Mansfield’s dedicated supporters.
He reflected on the enthusiastic fanbase, saying, “I attended a Mansfield game at Notts many years ago, probably 15 years ago, and they filled the entire section. So, I’ve been aware for a long time of what these matches mean to the supporters. The crowd is expected to be outstanding for a League Two encounter, highlighting the stature of these clubs.”
Clough also recalled facing Notts County in higher divisions and acknowledged the positive impact they’ve had in recent seasons. He noted the increased exposure the derby will receive due to its live television broadcast and emphasized the added importance of such matches and the responsibility not to lose them.
“We are acutely aware of what these games mean to the fans,” Clough concluded, underlining the significance of the upcoming derby clash.