John Coleman believed Notts County and Stanley would be battling for promotion this season – but he is now getting prepared for tomorrow’s relegation fight.

The 21st placed Reds face the 22nd placed Magpies, who are on the same points with both sides just one point above the drop zone, at the Wham Stadium.

“I fancied Notts County to get promoted at the start of the season, saying that I believed we would be up there too,” said Coleman, whose side has two games in hand on the Magpies.

“Football has a way of shocking you. The stature of Notts County dictates that they should be higher, they are a big club, and everyone around Notts County must be frustrated.

“Sometimes you can’t put your finger on what is going wrong and the harder you try, the tougher it gets but you have got to see it through.

“They have brought in Kevin Nolan as manager. He is a proper footballing person, he loves his football and he will be working hard to get them going in the right direction.

“He galvanised Orient who he first took over there, they hit the ground running, even though it didn’t work out in the end and they will be looking to stop us in our tracks while we know a win would be massive for us.”

Stanley have won three league games at home this season and Coleman is expecting a better second half of the campaign.

“We have to go out all guns blazing tomorrow, we have performed well against the bigger teams and Notts County are one of them but we have to turn up every week no matter who we play.

“There is still a lot of football to be played between now and the end of the season, there will be a lot of twists and turns and we have to make sure we are twisting and turning the right way.

“Notts County are coming to us on the back of a win which helps them but we know we are playing well and have turned in a sterling performance against Carlisle, with ten men, and then a very good performance at Middlesbrough so we have to keep playing well and we will get the win we deserve.”