GOALKEEPER Lenny Pidgeley believes Newport County AFC can use last season’s success as inspiration as they face up to another fixture pile-up.
After having four home games postponed due to a waterlogged pitch at Rodney Parade, County face five matches this month and an amazing eight in March before six more in April.
It all has a feeling if déjà vu for the Exiles and their fans after three home postponements and the never-ending saga of the Gateshead away fixture derailed their Conference title challenge in 2012/13.
And Pidgeley reckons that the experience of dealing with a backlog of games in the previous campaign – and coming through it to win promotion via the play-offs – will stand the team in good stead this time round.
“We did it last year and we were successful and that’s always in the back of your mind,” said Pidgeley.
“It’s going to be a bit tougher because we’re playing better teams and we’ve got to give more but we know we can cope with that.
“We had a lot of games called off and we still managed to finish strongly and went up in the play-offs. So we’re not writing anything off yet.”
Pidgeley put in a man of the match performance as Justin Edinburgh’s men picked up a valuable point in a 0-0 draw at promotion rivals Southend United on Friday night.
And he should recover from a swollen ankle to face another top-seven side in Fleetwood Town at Rodney Parade this Friday, when he believes County can start making up ground at the top.
The Exiles are currently eighth, eight points behind seventh-placed Burton Albion with two games in hand.
“We’ve been playing all these away games and we’ve not been able to get our home wins in and get that momentum going,” said the former Chelsea stopper.
“We’ve not been able to go away and say ‘we’ll take a draw here’ because we haven’t had the home games to fall back on.
“Six of the last seven have been away and it’s always tough winning away.
“On the other hand we do have a lot of home games to come now so if we can get on a winning run it can benefit us.
“If we replicate our home form from the start of the season we’re still going to be in amongst it.
“I still think we’re doing ourselves proud,” he added. “For a team that has just been promoted into this league we’re doing pretty well to still be up there. We’re not looking over our shoulder.
“And with the squad we’ve got, with games in hand, if we can get over this little bad patch with the weather when we start getting home games in I think we’ll be up there.”