THE HALF DECENT FOOTBALL MAGAZINE

Notts County, Port Vale and Hyde

icon weekendLeague One ~ Hughes eyes County bonus
Lee Hughes scored a late winner to earn Notts County a 3-2 win over Shrewsbury Town and send his side top of the league. The goals didn't start flowing until the 57th minute, when Francois Zoko put County ahead. Four minutes later Town were level from the penalty spot, then 60 seconds later they were ahead as Jermaine Grandison scored a fine solo effort. Two minutes after that the scores were level again, Jeff Hughes heading in. It took until the 87th minute for the home side to find the winner; Lee Hughes turned in the area and finished from six yards.

"It's great, we'll get a better bonus!" Hughes said. "I've always had a knack of knowing where to be inside the box to score and I'm glad I'm still doing it. I always fancy myself to stick the ball in the back of the net if I get a chance. The lads on the bench asked me if I thought I could get a goal when I went on and I said it only takes a second to score. It was a great feeling to get the winner."

League Two ~ Pope swaps pub for goals
Tom Pope scored four times for Port Vale as they hammered his former club Rotherham United 6-2. Vale began the scoring on five minutes, when Louis Dodds went clear and slotted the ball past Scott Shearer. By half an hour the home side were 4-0 up, Pope scoring twice. Rotherham showed signs of a fightback, pulling one goal back on 31 minutes and then a second from the penalty spot after half time. Pope put the game beyond doubt with goals after 68 and 78 minutes to take his tally for the season to six and move Vale up to third.

Pope attributes his good early-season form to a change in lifestyle: "I've been a dad for 16 months now and it changes your perspective on things. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy chilling out with my mates in the local, having a game of darts or watching the football. But the late nights have stopped." He also took a swipe, not particularly subtlety, at Andy Scott, who was manager during his time at Rotherham. "It would have added a bit more if the right person was there to see it. I had a lot of stick from the fans there, but I had a lot of injuries, which is something I'd never experienced before. I know Rotherham never saw the best of me, so it was nice to show them what they're missing out on. It was the best moment of my career in professional football so far."

Conference ~ Happy Hyde humble Hereford
Hyde got their first win in the Conference with a 5-2 victory over Hereford United on Saturday. The club offered half-price admission to Ewan Fields for the match hoping that an absence of Premier League and Championship matches would attract people. Only 688 turned up, their lowest home crowd of the season so far, but more performances like this may gain some interest. Phil Jevons was the Hyde hero, scoring a hat-trick in 12 second-half minutes to lift his side off the bottom off the table. The high-scoring match was not the only one in the Conference this weekend – in 12 games there were 42 goals scored in total.

Hereford manager Martin Foyle was unhappy with the manner of the defeat: "The mistakes have cost us big time today, so I have got no excuses. I hold my hands up. Did I select the right side and did I select the right formation? I will certainly have a good look at myself, but I hope the players have a good look too." Tom Hocking

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