Adam Chapman backs Byron Anthony to return fitter and stronger
NEWPORT County AFC midfield star Adam Chapman has backed teammate Byron Anthony to come back fitter and stronger from his double leg break.
Centre-back Anthony suffered the horrific injury as he skippered his hometown club in Tuesday night’s Capital One Cup tie at Brighton & Hove Albion.
Chapman helped inspire the Exiles to a remarkable 3-1 win in extra-time after Anthony was stretchered off and Inigo Calderon was sent off in the same incident.
His cross was converted by substitute Danny Crow to cancel out Ashley Barnes’ first half strike for the hosts before Crow and fellow sub Conor Washington sealed a famous win in extra-time.
Chapman’s delight at knocking out the Championship outfit was tempered by Anthony’s injury and he joined manager Justin Edinburgh in dedicating the result to his stricken teammate.
“We are over the moon with the result,” said Chapman.
“We expected to give a good account of ourselves but we didn’t expect a 3-1 win.
“We would probably have taken a good performance and to win is brilliant.
“We’re sending all our best wishes to Byron and what happened inspired us to win it for him,” he added.
“I’m sure he’ll be just as happy as the rest of us with the result.
“The red card did make a massive difference but I don’t think anyone could begrudge us the win.
“Even before the red card we were in the game and deserved to be level, if not winning.
“We knew we wouldn’t have the majority of the ball but we knew we had to stick with it and we created lots of chances.
“Their goal was a great goal and we knew we’d come up against movement like that from a Championship side and we always felt we were in the game.”
The former Oxford United midfielder had a close-up view of Anthony’s distress but he is sure that the Newport-born defender will be back.
“I saw it straight away,” he said. “I was running behind him and I knew he’d broken his ankle so I didn’t go anywhere near it.
“I can’t look at stuff like that but he’s a strong character and he’ll be back. Byron was our best player until that point. The way he was reading the game was magnificent and he’s been superb all the way through pre-season.
“I don’t think the boy meant to do it,” he added.
“Their players said he’s not like that so it was just unfortunate.
“Their players were very concerned for Byron. The crowd wasn’t happy that their player got sent off but I’m sure when they think about it – that a player has got a double break – they’ll re-evaluate it.”
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