Notts County boss John Sheridan says his players will go into Saturday’s big derby at Mansfield Town full of belief as they seek revenge for last season’s two defeats at the hands of the Stags.
The Magpies have won five out of their last seven matches to propel them into the play-off positions.
They have also won their last four away matches, while the Stags have just one home win this season.
Sheridan said: “I respect Mansfield because they’ve some good players, but we’ve won our last four away and we go there with belief.
“We will have to earn the right to play, but we have the capability to do that.
“I won’t be changing too much. I want to win it for the supporters especially after last season. But I am just going into it looking to get three points.
“I am looking at it like it is Exeter or Cheltenham away. We just want to continue our form.”
The experienced boss said he would not be using last season’s defeats to the Stags as a motivation for the players because he was not at the club then.
“I won’t use last season as a motivation. I wasn’t here. I will go into the game differently and I think we are a better team than last year,” he said.
“Last season has gone. I’m a new manager, with new players. But I expect a really tough game.”
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Sheridan said he didn’t want the derby to become a battle and hoped his side would be able to play some football.
“The players have to be careful. There will be a few tackles flying in,” he said.
“I’ve just got to prepare the best way. We’ve got to be patient and see how the game starts and deal with it.
“We have better players and if it’s a battle I’ve got players who will stand up to it.
“We’ve done that on a few occasions. Cheltenham was a tough game for us but we dealt with it really well.
“There will be a lot of desire and determination to win.
“It’s one of those games where it doesn’t matter how you play, you just want to win.
“But we will try to play. We don’t want to get caught up in a battle, but if it’s ugly then we will have to deal with that.
“Hopefully we can affect the game our way and affect it in a way that we end up winning it.
“I’d rather be playing than managing in games like this. It will be a great atmosphere, we will take a big following and these are the types of games you want to play in.”
Sheridan said his players were looking forward to the game after last Saturday’s league match at Meadow Lane was abandoned because of heavy rain.
He added: “We were disappointed not to play last Saturday. We are doing okay in the league.
“With it being Mansfield there’s a bit more of an edge to it. We’ve got to treat it like any other game.”