DAVID Pipe has urged his Newport County AFC teammates to ramp up the pressure on their League Two promotion rivals with a win over Port Vale this evening.

County can climb to fifth with a win over the visitors who arrive at Rodney Parade in 22nd place.

But Pipe, who could captain the Exiles with Joss Labadie ruled out and Mark O’Brien doubtful, will not allow any complacency to set in against a side who have won five of the seven matches since Neil Aspin took over as manager last month.

“The new manager has gone in there and turned it around,” said Pipe.

“They’ve got some good pros who I’ve played against before and they’ve picked up some good results so there’s no way that anyone will be underestimating them.

“This game is crucial because we’re the only two teams playing [tonight].

“It’s a little bit different playing on a Friday night. I like playing under the lights and hopefully we’ll get a good atmosphere like we normally do.

“And we want to put the pressure on the teams around us to follow our result.

“As the season progresses it’s natural to think about what we can achieve,” he added.

“We’ll aim for the play-offs and higher and if we can keep doing what we have done up to this point and stay in the mix after Christmas then why not?”

Pipe turned 34 last Sunday and he takes his role as a senior player in the squad seriously.

“I try to keep standards up around the training ground,” he explained.

“If you let them drop at any time then you’ve got more chance of slipping up come game day.

“I try to lead by example in the way I conduct myself in training day in and day out.

“Hopefully that can rub off on a few but they don’t need me to tell them that because we’ve got a good group of lads and everyone takes care of themselves.”

The former Wales international has already planned his next move after retirement but he is loving life back at Rodney Parade and has no intention of hanging up his boots any time soon.

“I try to stay as young as I can,” he said. “I’ve always thought about the future and I’ve got everything in place to go into the strength and conditioning side.

“But as far as playing is concerned I like to think that compared to the average player I try to do a lot more to look after myself and hopefully towards the end of my career that will stand me in good stead.

“I certainly don’t feel like I’m 34 and I’d like to think when people watch me they wouldn’t guess that age either.

“That’s the picture I’m trying to portray and I’ll try to do that for as long as I can.”

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Pipe also sees a future at Rodney Parade for Jazzi Barnum-Bobb (above), who this week joined Torquay United on loan until January.

“Jazzi needs to go and play games,” said Pipe. “He’s a good lad with a good attitude and I do genuinely believe that he will play at a good level.

“But for the time being he needs to be playing.

“We’re probably in direct competition for that right-sided spot but there’s no animosity there and hopefully he’ll go away and perform well there and come back and perform well for Newport.”