Whilst no one is getting carried away with themselves – Keith Curle’s perfect start at Notts has already seen him surpass any points tally that many would’ve expected from him – possibly for the whole of the season.
County end the night in seventh place, narrowly falling just short of entering the playoff positions by virtue of Stevenage’s late, late equaliser at home to Huddersfield.
You can question the quality of the opponents that KC has faced thus far but the old adage is that you can only beat what’s in front of you. And both Chesterfield and Stevenage were amongst the division’s form sides until being put to the Meadow Lane sword.
Rochdale aren’t pulling up any trees themselves from the relegation zone – but it was always going to be interesting to see how Notts got on away from home under this still new regime.
In truth they’ve passed tonight with flying colours. With what might not have been the most inspiring line-up (Burgess up front on his own? Sodje in for Edwards?) it was Hamza Bencherif’s second goal of the season on the stroke of half time that sees the three points being brought back to Meadow Lane.
It didn’t come without any damage though – namely the second half red card of Lee Hughes who will be absent now for possibly three games.
But at least it gave Rochdale’s support something to make some noise about tonight!
And so we head for the weekend and perhaps the biggest game of the season so far with a home game against Carlisle United – the side we leapfrogged this evening into seventh.
We’re all delighted with that, more so with the three straight wins and their clean sheets, but this is the game that will tell us the most about where we’re heading this season under Keith Curle and his backroom staff.
The side we beat 3-0 on the opening day of the season have shaken off the early setback well and despite a lack of consistency find themselves with a great chance of promotion this season. To say it’ll be a tough afternoon is no understatement – but Notts will take hope from the six goals Carlisle have conceded in their past two fixtures.
But that’s the weekend, for now, let’s reflect on tonight’s success.
Quite brilliantly, it’s the first time Notts have won three games on the bounce all season, backed up by the three consecutive clean sheets – another first for the campaign.
We’ll conveniently ignore the games in hand that both Stevenage and Carlisle hold over us for now.
Humble pie is being dished up and feasted upon heavily right now – and i’m not sure many will mind!