County fail to find inspiration despite supporter heroics: Match report

County fail to find inspiration despite supporter heroics: Match report

County fail to find inspiration despite supporter heroics: Match report

First published in Sport South Wales Argus: Photograph of the Author by

THE headlines for this one wrote themselves, or so we thought.

"County make hay as the sun doesn’t shine", or "fans put County top of the league", were going to be the talk of the city today, weren’t they?

Because there was a tremendous happening at Rodney Parade on Saturday. The Amber Army performed with great distinction and were a credit to the club in a performance that will have impressed fans across the land. But unfortunately, none of that happened between 3 and 5pm.

And it wasn’t the Newport County players who impressed and inspired, far from it, it was the supporters, 120 hardy souls who braved the elements and got the game on by assisting the ground staff.

If a single one of them left Rodney Parade on Saturday uttering anything different than: "I wish I hadn’t bothered", they are far better people than me.

Because as a performance this was as limp as I’ve seen from Newport in ages, and for a team with designs on winning the Conference, it was nothing short of pathetic.

Those are strong words but justified after a contest where Newport looked like they could play until Christmas Day and still not find the net.

Throw in a potentially serious injury to your top scorer and arguably best player and it might well be that come the season’s end, we’ll look back at Barrow at home as one of the games where it all got away.

Credit is definitely due to the Bluebirds who defended for their lives and were strong and resolute.

But what is it about Newport and the weather?

They seem to decide that on a weather-affected pitch – rain or cold – that they simply can’t play passing football.

We saw it on New Year’s day when Forest Green Rovers massacred them and we saw it again on Saturday.

The slick passing that has been Newport’s great asset this term degenerated into 50 and 60-yard long balls fired from the fullbacks or midfielders.

When your target is Danny Crow or Aaron O’Connor, it’s mind-numbingly pointless and frustrating.

Speaking of O’Connor, don’t be fooled into thinking that County lost because they couldn’t adjust to his departure which, worryingly, was on a stretcher.

It was a blow, of course, but Newport had already failed to create anything of note for nearly half the game before his exit and that was a pattern that didn’t change markedly, even with County getting more and more gung-ho and ending the contest playing 3-3-4.

What to do, what to do against the lesser sides at home? It’s a problem County still can’t crack.

When visitors put ten men behind the ball and look for the quick counter, County often look bereft of ideas. Never more so than on Saturday.

There wasn’t a County effort on goal worthy of mention in the first half, lots of squandered possession and long passing but no true menace, the complete contrast to their previous performance.

Barrow could’ve gone ahead earlier when David Pipe was exposed by the overlapping Gavin Skel-ton, but he couldn’t beat Alan Julian.

However, when Newport failed to clear properly from a corner four minutes before the interval, they did pay for it, Matt Flynn tapping home from all of a yard.

That came not long after a turn and shot from O’Connor that nearly hit the corner flag, as he went down and stayed down.

He was stretchered off with a thigh injury and thousands of fans will anxiously await news of his scan.

He was replaced by Danny Crow, but the ex-Hatter was entirely starved of service, save for one tame second half effort easily held by Danny Hurst.

Only once did Newport really look like scoring, Andrew Hughes’ firm header and two scrambled rebounds diverted by first Hurst, then a defender on the line and then turned wide in a frantic exchange after the break.

And by then County looked well beaten, having fallen two down by wilting as Adam Boyes fed Danny Rowe whose finish took a slight deflection to deceive Julian.

County threw more and more players forward and Mike Flynn and Lee Evans both came close as the minutes ticked away, but in truth even a consolation strike looked well beyond Newport as Barrow blocked and scrambled their way to a deserved win.

Harsh words were spoken after the game and boss Justin Edinburgh didn’t meet the press, but the Exiles have an immediate chance to make amends at Woking tomorrow and will hopefully be fired up to reward their supporters.

Newport County: Julian, Pipe (Swallow 72), Sandell, Hughes, James, Evans, Flynn, Minshull (Washington 69), O’Connor (Crow 37), Jolley, Willmott Subs not used: Pidgeley, Yakubu Booked: Pipe, Evans Barrow: Hurst, Flynn, Skelton, Hessey, M Pearson, Owen, Rutherford, Baker, McConville, Boyes, DL Rowe Subs not used: S Pearson, D Rowe, Harvey, Hunter Booked: McConville, Hurst, Skelton, Baker Referee: Lee Swabey Attendance: 2107

Comments (6)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

2:04am Mon 21 Jan 13

COUNTYVOICE says...

a fairly accurate argus report, and pathetic was the right word to use.

the players need to buck their ideas up , forget the long ball game , and start
using the ball intelligently across the floor.

we are not at spytty anymore , no more bumby pitches, you are playing on a decent surface, and county have players who can pass the ball

county have always looked a decent team when they PASS THE BALL BETWEEN THEMSELVES AND RETAIN POSSESSION

too many hoofing the ball forward, too many stray passes giving possession away cheaply , too many inaccurate crosses.

THERE IS NO EXCUSE for the long ball game .use defence splitting passes along the floor to use the pass of o connor and crowe, and especially jolley.

get SWALLOW in for the woking game, and give PIDGELY a chance as julian is more shakey THAN SHAKIN STEVENS.

get yakubu in the centre of defence, and get porter back in , utilise FLYNNS Experience, and use the width of the pitch with WILLMOTTS AND SWALLOW.

and attack every loose ball and tackle hard but fair as if their lives depended on it, get stuck in and give the county faithful something to shout about.

but seriously saturday was a let down not only for the 120 volunteers who cleared the stadium but also the 2000+ spectators who had to endure such rubbish.

pull your fingers out county
a fairly accurate argus report, and pathetic was the right word to use. the players need to buck their ideas up , forget the long ball game , and start using the ball intelligently across the floor. we are not at spytty anymore , no more bumby pitches, you are playing on a decent surface, and county have players who can pass the ball county have always looked a decent team when they PASS THE BALL BETWEEN THEMSELVES AND RETAIN POSSESSION too many hoofing the ball forward, too many stray passes giving possession away cheaply , too many inaccurate crosses. THERE IS NO EXCUSE for the long ball game .use defence splitting passes along the floor to use the pass of o connor and crowe, and especially jolley. get SWALLOW in for the woking game, and give PIDGELY a chance as julian is more shakey THAN SHAKIN STEVENS. get yakubu in the centre of defence, and get porter back in , utilise FLYNNS Experience, and use the width of the pitch with WILLMOTTS AND SWALLOW. and attack every loose ball and tackle hard but fair as if their lives depended on it, get stuck in and give the county faithful something to shout about. but seriously saturday was a let down not only for the 120 volunteers who cleared the stadium but also the 2000+ spectators who had to endure such rubbish. pull your fingers out county COUNTYVOICE
  • Score: 0

2:05am Mon 21 Jan 13

COUNTYVOICE says...

a fairly accurate argus report, and pathetic was the right word to use.

the players need to buck their ideas up , forget the long ball game , and start
using the ball intelligently across the floor.

we are not at spytty anymore , no more bumby pitches, you are playing on a decent surface, and county have players who can pass the ball

county have always looked a decent team when they PASS THE BALL BETWEEN THEMSELVES AND RETAIN POSSESSION

too many hoofing the ball forward, too many stray passes giving possession away cheaply , too many inaccurate crosses.

THERE IS NO EXCUSE for the long ball game .use defence splitting passes along the floor to use the pass of o connor and crowe, and especially jolley.

get SWALLOW in for the woking game, and give PIDGELY a chance as julian is more shakey THAN SHAKIN STEVENS.

get yakubu in the centre of defence, and get porter back in , utilise FLYNNS Experience, and use the width of the pitch with WILLMOTTS AND SWALLOW.

and attack every loose ball and tackle hard but fair as if their lives depended on it, get stuck in and give the county faithful something to shout about.

but seriously saturday was a let down not only for the 120 volunteers who cleared the stadium but also the 2000+ spectators who had to endure such rubbish.

pull your fingers out county
a fairly accurate argus report, and pathetic was the right word to use. the players need to buck their ideas up , forget the long ball game , and start using the ball intelligently across the floor. we are not at spytty anymore , no more bumby pitches, you are playing on a decent surface, and county have players who can pass the ball county have always looked a decent team when they PASS THE BALL BETWEEN THEMSELVES AND RETAIN POSSESSION too many hoofing the ball forward, too many stray passes giving possession away cheaply , too many inaccurate crosses. THERE IS NO EXCUSE for the long ball game .use defence splitting passes along the floor to use the pass of o connor and crowe, and especially jolley. get SWALLOW in for the woking game, and give PIDGELY a chance as julian is more shakey THAN SHAKIN STEVENS. get yakubu in the centre of defence, and get porter back in , utilise FLYNNS Experience, and use the width of the pitch with WILLMOTTS AND SWALLOW. and attack every loose ball and tackle hard but fair as if their lives depended on it, get stuck in and give the county faithful something to shout about. but seriously saturday was a let down not only for the 120 volunteers who cleared the stadium but also the 2000+ spectators who had to endure such rubbish. pull your fingers out county COUNTYVOICE
  • Score: 0

2:05am Mon 21 Jan 13

COUNTYVOICE says...

a fairly accurate argus report, and pathetic was the right word to use.

the players need to buck their ideas up , forget the long ball game , and start
using the ball intelligently across the floor.

we are not at spytty anymore , no more bumby pitches, you are playing on a decent surface, and county have players who can pass the ball

county have always looked a decent team when they PASS THE BALL BETWEEN THEMSELVES AND RETAIN POSSESSION

too many hoofing the ball forward, too many stray passes giving possession away cheaply , too many inaccurate crosses.

THERE IS NO EXCUSE for the long ball game .use defence splitting passes along the floor to use the pass of o connor and crowe, and especially jolley.

get SWALLOW in for the woking game, and give PIDGELY a chance as julian is more shakey THAN SHAKIN STEVENS.

get yakubu in the centre of defence, and get porter back in , utilise FLYNNS Experience, and use the width of the pitch with WILLMOTTS AND SWALLOW.

and attack every loose ball and tackle hard but fair as if their lives depended on it, get stuck in and give the county faithful something to shout about.

but seriously saturday was a let down not only for the 120 volunteers who cleared the stadium but also the 2000+ spectators who had to endure such rubbish.

pull your fingers out county
a fairly accurate argus report, and pathetic was the right word to use. the players need to buck their ideas up , forget the long ball game , and start using the ball intelligently across the floor. we are not at spytty anymore , no more bumby pitches, you are playing on a decent surface, and county have players who can pass the ball county have always looked a decent team when they PASS THE BALL BETWEEN THEMSELVES AND RETAIN POSSESSION too many hoofing the ball forward, too many stray passes giving possession away cheaply , too many inaccurate crosses. THERE IS NO EXCUSE for the long ball game .use defence splitting passes along the floor to use the pass of o connor and crowe, and especially jolley. get SWALLOW in for the woking game, and give PIDGELY a chance as julian is more shakey THAN SHAKIN STEVENS. get yakubu in the centre of defence, and get porter back in , utilise FLYNNS Experience, and use the width of the pitch with WILLMOTTS AND SWALLOW. and attack every loose ball and tackle hard but fair as if their lives depended on it, get stuck in and give the county faithful something to shout about. but seriously saturday was a let down not only for the 120 volunteers who cleared the stadium but also the 2000+ spectators who had to endure such rubbish. pull your fingers out county COUNTYVOICE
  • Score: 0

5:04am Mon 21 Jan 13

swrxp09 says...

As an ex-pat living 6000 miles away from home I always try and tune into a County commentary on line. I also enjoy the match videos on the County web-site. I always thought "the camera never lies" but to my untrained eye we seemed to play better football in the 0-2 loss to Barrow than in the 4-2 wins at Lincoln. Although the Lincoln game had goals it seemed to have more long balls and a kick it anywher second half. Maybe it's just me.
As an ex-pat living 6000 miles away from home I always try and tune into a County commentary on line. I also enjoy the match videos on the County web-site. I always thought "the camera never lies" but to my untrained eye we seemed to play better football in the 0-2 loss to Barrow than in the 4-2 wins at Lincoln. Although the Lincoln game had goals it seemed to have more long balls and a kick it anywher second half. Maybe it's just me. swrxp09
  • Score: 0

9:03am Mon 21 Jan 13

llandaff says...

As Charles Dickens would say in a Tale of Two Countys "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times"

As Forrest Gump would say " Mama aways said that the County are like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get"
As Charles Dickens would say in a Tale of Two Countys "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times" As Forrest Gump would say " Mama aways said that the County are like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get" llandaff
  • Score: 0

8:53pm Mon 21 Jan 13

golfball says...

One area of weakness that has cost us a lot of goals is at left back - as much as I like Sandell he always gives the wide players far to much space.
One area of weakness that has cost us a lot of goals is at left back - as much as I like Sandell he always gives the wide players far to much space. golfball
  • Score: 0

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree