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From The Vault

Updated: Nov 23, 2020

Notts came into this highly anticipated FA Cup 4th round tie on the back of a run that had seen them lose only once in the last ten games which included the FA Cup wins at home to Bournemouth and away to Premier League Sunderland.

A crowd of 16,587 crammed into a restricted Meadow Lane to see the League One newcomers take on the Premier League's big spenders who's starting line up was burgeoning with international talent.

The match was played in front of the live TV camera's with pundits making much of the pudding like state of the pitch which at the time was also being used by Nottingham Rugby Club.

Despite the gulf in league position and indeed quality it was a fairly even affair with Paul Ince's men more than matching their illustrious opponents which is evident in the key match stats.

A very even first half saw the teams go in level without a goal at half time although Notts can thank goalkeeper Stuart Nelson for an excellent save with his legs from Yaya Toure who had latched onto a cross at close range from Micah Richards.

The second half started much the same as the first with not a great deal happening in front of goal until Notts won a corner on 59 minutes. Alan Gow (remember him?) stepped up to take the corner in front of a vociferous and packed Kop, his in-swinging corner finding the head of Neal Bishop who managed to guide the ball into the roof of the City net.

With the Magpies in front the game continued in a cut and thrust fashion with City going close with a Dzeko header and Stuart Nelson once again making an excellent save from a Gareth Barry volley from 25 yards out.

Any thoughts of a giant killing were put to rest in the 80th minute when Micah Richards latched onto a through ball from substitute David Silva down the right flank, appearing to bamboozle a floundering Jon Harley in the process, before crossing low into the box for Edin Dzeko to fire the ball into the roof of the Magpies goal.

This was Dzeko's first competitive goal in English football following his £27M move from Wolfsburg.

Notts had chances to win the game near the end with captain Mike Edwards close to latching onto a far post cross and Lee Hughes heading wide in the dying minutes. Sadly it was not to be and Notts had a replay to look forward to at Eastlands.

Unfortunately the replay was a bridge too far for the Magpies and despite Karl Hawley hitting the woodwork early on with a speculative long range effort City went on to win comfortably (5-0) and eventually going on to win the competition beating Stoke City 1-0 in the final.

Never the less this was a very impressive cup run for Notts who were playing in League One for the first time in six seasons following promotion as League Two Champions the previous campaign.

However, shortly after their cup heroics the season started to nosedive as wins became hard to come by eventually resulting in Paul Ince leaving by mutual consent in April after recording 7 defeats in the previous 8 games.

With Notts looking like relegation candidates former Barnet manager Martin Allen was drafted in with just 7 games remaining. The Magpies eventually finished the season in 19th place, three points above the drop zone.

Credits: Video - NottsCountyVidsHD | Pic - Associated Press | Match Stats - BBC Sport

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