Credit: Richie Sumpter

Notts County return to Meadow Lane in the league for the first time in a month – as they play host to Grimsby Town.

Magpies boss Ian Burchnall said: “It’s strange, been over a month since our last league game at home and that feels like a long time, too long really.

“We are happy to be back in front of the crowd and now we get a rhythm of games on Saturday and Tuesday. I think that’s good for us and we need that now.”

This match will act as a memorial game for the legendary BBC commentator Colin Slater who passed away on January 10.

“I think Colin and anybody that had an affiliation with the club you want to be able to honour that in the right moment.

“It’s our opportunity to do that this weekend for Colin, we want to do that firstly with the crowd and show our respects that way and hopefully the players can do the same on the pitch put on a good performance.”

Notts County were on a six-game winning streak but have taken one point from their last two games.

Burchnall said: “One week you are clever and a great coach and one-week you’re not but it’s small margins.

“If you take the Grimsby game as a reference point, I thought we played away at Grimsby a difficult game, it could have been a draw, but we scored late on and suddenly it was an amazing away performance.”

Grimsby are 10th in the National League three points behind in Notts and can be level on points with a win on Saturday.

He said: “I think every game is going to be important now.

“I only think the importance of each game will increase the closer to the end of the season you get.

“It is really important, but we’ll play this game, I think they are all going to be very important.”

Slater’s funeral took place on Monday with attendees including Burchall, first-team players past and present. Burchnall predecessor Neal Ardley also attended.

“I think you can see what a profound impact somebody can have in a football club and the players have that opportunity to also create legacy and have a profound impact on and off the pitch and you see somebody who has that impact it is very inspiring for the players,” Burchnall added.

Notts County see a run of consistent games following an abrupt postponement of several games due to Covid. After Grimsby they face Barnet and Halifax Town in the FA Trophy.

He doesn’t mind having games in hand “We were very frustrated by the lack of games over the Christmas period, so I don’t mind seeing Saturday Tuesday now for a good few weeks.

“I think we’ve got a good squad everybody is fit and healthy, so we are absolutely healthy and ready to attack a busy period.”

A win can see the Magpies move up a spot in the table in their bid for a playoff place.