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05 August 2023 Venue VBS Community Stadium Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League Two

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Match Previews

Sutton v Notts County preview and travel update

4 August 2023

The 2023-24 Sky Bet League Two season gets under way on Saturday, and the VBS Community Stadium stages one of the afternoon's standout games in the section as Notts County, one of the founder members of the Football League, return to the competition after four years in the National League.

Notts County secured promotion in a penalty shoot-out success against East Midlands rivals Chesterfield at Wembley, and there were few outside the Derbyshire town who would not have seen it as justice after County ran Wrexham all the way in the National League championship race, finishing with a points tally of 107 which would normally have seen them finish comfortably at the top.

A high-profile signing following County's promotion was Republic of Ireland striker David McGoldrick, who started with the club before going on to a successful career, helping Sheffield United to promotion to the Premier League in 2019 and scoring 25 goals for League One Derby County last season. Will Randall, released by Matt Gray after four seasons with Sutton, is another close season capture who could figure on Saturday.

The U's boss has reshuffled his side during the summer, with ten new faces in the squad, the most recent addition being another Republic of Ireland international Aiden O'Brien on loan from League One Shrewsbury Town, and although pre-season has been slightly disrupted by injuries, Matt is hopeful that some of the injury concerns over the past couple of weeks will have eased in time for Saturday's game.

Tickets are available on line through this link, with ground admission prices £21 for adults, £15 for concessions and £7 for ages 12-18. Under 12 tickets are free if bought in conjunction with an adult or concession ticket. Seats are £4 extra in all cases. We would strongly recommend buying in advance, with a large crowd expected on Saturday. Subject to availability, tickets will be on sale on the day at the ticket kiosk with a £2 increase in the above prices, an increase which does not apply to tickets sold on line even on the day of the game.

A match programme is available to buy on line, price £4 plus postage, here, and you can also buy a subscription to the programme, covering all our home games in Sky Bet League Two, the Carabao Cup, the EFL Trophy and the FA Cup, here for £85.75 plus postage.

Supporters are advised that there are no Thameslink trains through West Sutton on Saturday due to industrial action. There is a half hourly Southern service from Victoria to Dorking via Mitcham Junction, and a separate half hourly service from Victoria to Epsom Downs via West Croydo, all of which call at Sutton, but note that there are no trains from Sutton on Saturday evening after the 17.51 to London. From Sutton station catch the 80 or 413 bus to the ground - both services also connect with Morden station on the Northern Line, which is operating normally.

The home fan zone will be open from 12 noon serving drinks and pies, with live music and player appearances from 1.40pm, so why not come down early and meet up with supporters to look ahead to the season before the game. Please note that the MBA Lounge is closed after the game for a private function but the Players' Bar will be open as usual.

iFollow service returns

For supporters unable to get to the game we once again have our iFollow service up and running with audio commentary from every game for UK supporters, and some games being live streamed in the UK. Saturday's game will be an audio commentary, and passes can be bought for £2.50, but monthly passes are available for £4.49 and season passes for £45, both excellent value. Overseas supporters can watch every game, with a match pass costing £10. Again monthly passes are available at £25 and a season pass at the early bird price of £140 until the end of August. Click here for full details and to purchase a pass.

EFL Youth Alliance

The EFL Youth Alliance season also gets under way on Saturday, with our first South East Division game at home to Brentford. This is being played at Aberdour School, kick off 11am. Supporters not travelling to Barrow next week will have the chance to see the youngsters at the VBS with Leyton Orient the visitors.

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Match Reports

Match report for Sutton United 5 Notts County 1

5 August 2023

Sutton United 5 (Kizzi 2, Patrick 23,50, Beautyman 63, Smith 78) Notts County 1 (McGoldrick 69)

Sutton made a sensational start to the new Sky Bet League Two campaign as Notts County suffered a chastening return to the EFL. Ahead inside the first two minutes as Joe Kizzi scored the first goal of the season in League Two, Sutton made the most of the dismissal of Notts County goalkeeper Aidan Stone after quarter of an hour and coasted to a spectacular first ever victory over County, with Omari Patrick marking his competitve debut with two superb goals and Harry Smith also opening his account with the fifth goal that settled any unease after David McGoldrick had pulled a goal back with just over twenty minutes left.

The tone was set after only a minute as Scott Kashket outpaced Connell Rawlinson to a ball over the top and the defender needed to make a last ditch tackle at the expense of a corner. Former Magpie Rob Milsom swung the flag kick over to the far post where Kizzi lost his markers to head home. 

In an eventful start to the game referee Sam Purkiss booked three players inside the first six minutes, Macaulay Langstaff shown a yellow card for his protests about a foul for which Craig Eastmond was booked, and Milsom also punished for a foul on the edge of the penalty area.

The next time the official reached for his pocket the card was red, as Kashket ran on to a poor back pass from Kyle Cameron and Stone brought him down on the edge of the penalty area. The referee decided it was a clear enough goalscoring opportunity to produce the red card, with Jim O'Brien sacrificed for substitute keeper Sam Slocombe. Milsom just failed to find the target with the resulting free kick, and Patrick also sent a shot just wide after cutting in from the left, but he had better luck when Kizzi punished some more hesitancy from County to win possession and find Josh Coley, and Patrick met his low cross with a first time shot that flew in to the roof of the net.

Kashket almost had the goal his efforts deserved when his glancing header from Patrick's cross came back off the bar, while efforts just off target from McGoldrick and Macaulay Langstaff reminded U's that County still posed a threat, and early in the second half Aaron Nemane cut in before blazing a shot over. Hopes of a comeback for the visitors were soon dashed, though, as Harry Beautyman battled to send Coley away on the right, and his terrific cross was met by Patrick at the far post with a crunching header.

U's threatened now to run away with things as a cleared corner fell to Craig Eastmond, whose volley hit the foot of the far post, and although Jack Rose made one smart save from Langstaff U's had soon extended the lead as substitute Aiden O'Brien, who had replaced Kashket three minutes earlier while Craig Clay came on for Coley, collected a knock down from Smith and laid a pass wide to Beautyman, now on the left of midfield, who slotted past the advancing Slocombe.

County supporters did finally have something to cheer when McGoldrick flicked a long clearance on to Langstaff and then made ground to meet the return pass to fire home after Langstaff had beaten Ben Goodliffe to the ball. Despite U's superiority the goal might have sparked a few nerves, but the visitors couldn't produce a second goal to set up an exciting finish and U's made the game safe when Beautyman played a neat pass inside to Kizzi, whose chipped cross was headed in by Smith (above) under pressure from the defence. 

Supporters received an idea of the new timekeeping policies, with nine added minutes in the first half and ten in the second, but the additional time was insufficient for County to make any impact on the scoreline.

Sutton: Rose, J Kizzi, R Milsom, O Sowunmi, B Goodliffe(sub L John 81) C Eastmond, J Coley(sub C Clay 57),  S Kashket (sub A O'Brien 57), H Smith (sub L Angol 81), H Beautyman, O Patrick(sub T Fadahunsi 68). Booked: Eastmond, Milsom, Goodliffe

Notts County: A Stone, R Brindley, M Palmer, K Campbell, C Rawlinson(sub A Baldwin 60), J O'Brien(sub S Slocombe 18), J Bostock, D McGoldrick, M Langstaff(sub C Scott 72), J Jones(sub D Crowley 72), A Nemane(sub A Chicksen 60). Booked: Langstaff, Bostock, Baldwin. Sent Off: Stone

Referee: Sam Purkiss

Attendance: 4,010 (1,266 away)

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