MANAGER Michael Flynn has stressed Newport County AFC need to find their own training facilities if they are to climb the Football League.

The Exiles currently rent Spytty Park, which was their ground from 1994 until their move to Rodney Parade in 2012.

That move to the city centre meant a groundshare with the Dragons and then-owners Newport RFC but the semi-professional Black and Ambers are now in talks to split their fixtures between Rodney Parade and Spytty Park.

That is a double-edged sword for Flynn & Co – it will take the strain off the new hybrid surface where they play games but increase wear and tear on their main training pitch.

Spytty Park is run by Newport Live, who provide sporting and leisure activities in the city, and is also used by Ardal South East club Newport City and Newport Harriers athletics club.

The Exiles’ coaching staff have been frustrated by being forced to go on the move in recent seasons and last Friday, at short notice, were forced to finish their preparations for the League Two fixture against Leyton Orient at Caerleon AFC’s Cold Bath Road ground.

“It makes me and Wayne [Hatswell, assistant coach] look amateurish because it looks like we haven’t planned things but I can assure you we have,” said Flynn the day before the 2-2 draw at Rodney Parade.

The Exiles have recently used Undy AFC, Cwmbran Stadium and Dragons Park and Flynn, a member of Justin Edinburgh’s side that won promotion to League Two in 2013, has the aspiration of the club having a training base to call their own.

"We are a professional football team, we are not in the Beazer Homes League anymore," said the manager, who has been at the helm since 2017. "We want to improve our facilities and not destroy the pitches that we play and train on.

"We have a long way to go and this highlights that we need our own facilities in order to progress, and I know the board has been looking into these scenarios, so this is not on the club.

“If we want to seriously improve and keep going up the leagues, and increase our income, we have got to have a training ground that is our own, maybe with the academy on the same site.

“You could do functions, have a 4G pitch that you could hire out. It would stop money going out of the club because we are not paying to hire services.

“It's something we've got to look at, but I've been saying that since I was a player here, let alone now.”

Newport RFC, who get their Premiership Cup campaign under way this month and kick off in the league in December, will play the majority of their fixtures at Spytty Park if an agreement is reached but would not train at the venue.

The Black and Ambers initiated the move to Newport International Sports Village because it would be more cost effective and allow more Saturday games after being behind County and the Dragons in the pecking order at Rodney Parade.