NEWPORT County AFC utility man Robbie Willmott hopes his man-of-the-match performance against Port Vale will silence his critics.

Willmott came in for some flak from some County fans on social media after the FA Cup win over Walsall and he admits he has gone through a “sticky period” recently.

But the 27-year-old put in an excellent display on Friday night, creating the Exiles’ goal for Matty Dolan before substitute Anton Forrester rescued a point for the visitors late on.

“I was happy with the way I played,” said Willmott.

“I think I’ve had a bit of bad press over recent weeks from a few fans who have got on my back a little bit, trying to tell me I’m not a centre midfielder.

“I put a hundred per cent in for the club whatever position I play.

“The gaffer has asked me to play in centre midfield to do a job. I’m doing that to the best of my ability.

“It doesn’t bother me,” he added. “I think people saw on Twitter this week on supporter had a lot to say about my selection in the team and I’m hoping this performance shuts a few people up.

“I think I owed people a performance just to show I can still play at this level so I’m pleased with the man of the match [award].”

Willmott hopes to build on his performance against Vale and nail down a starting spot but insists that he’s not bothered what position he plays in.

“I never doubt myself,” he said. “I think everyone goes through a sticky period.

“I had a good start to the season, a bit of a sticky period and now it’s my time to kick on.

“I’ve had a good performance and now I’ve just got to build on that, work hard in training and just keep getting selected.

“Since bringing me back to the club the gaffer has played me in a few positions and showed faith in me.

“He asked me to do a job in midfield against Walsall and luckily I kept my place.

“I think I owed the fans a performance and I owed him a performance.

“I don’t mind where I play,” he continued. “I’ll always put in a hundred per cent wherever the gaffer selects me and whenever I’m wearing the shirt.”

South Wales Argus:

Manager Michael Flynn (above) described Willmott’s performance as “excellent” but he was angry that his side had, in his eyes, “thrown away” two points against the Valiants.

“It’s very frustrating,” said Willmott. “It feels like a loss, to be honest.

“One bit of bad defending caught us out but it’s a good start to the season we’ve had and we’ve just got to pick our heads up, go again at Accrington and try to get a good away win.

“The gaffer does well getting us up for games. We’ll work on a lot in training this week and we’ll probably watch a video on Accrington as well so we’ll go there well prepared.”