After 18 games, Notts County sat sixth in Sky Bet League 1 and firmly in the Play-Off mix. Nineteen games later, they are managerless and above the relegation zone on goal difference only.That run of form over the second half of the season, which has seen them win just three of 19 matches (they've won only three of their last 24 overall), brought Shaun Derry's tenure to an end, and this weekend they host fellow strugglers Scunthorpe United under the guidance of caretaker duo Paul Hart and Mick Halsall.
Change was needed – County CEO Aileen Trew
Despite their good start, comments Derry made in mid-December suggested his side weren't getting ahead of themselves. He remained realistic, after surviving relegation by the narrowest of margins last term.
"My main aim is to get to 50-51 points," the former midfielder said prior to the Magpies' trip to Rochdale just before Christmas, a game which, if they won, would have lifted them into the Play-Offs.
"But to reach that point, there is still a lot of hard work to do. We are on 30 points at the moment and we need to get to 50 as soon as we can.”
Since then, they've amassed 12 points, to sit on 42 with nine fixtures left, starting with Saturday's encounter against Scunthorpe, who are winless in eight and only one point above the Magpies.
The reverse meeting in October ended 1-0 to County, and that result extended their undefeated run against the Iron to seven league games, stretching back to January 2000.
Follow the goal action from Notts County's game against Scunthorpe on our Sky Bet League 1 Twitter feed - @SkyBetLeague1.