AN EARLY goal from Nathan Tyson and a late strike from Adebayo Akinfenwa condemned Newport County AFC to defeat at Wycombe Wanderers before Joss Labadie was sent off in the final minute. Here's what we learned...

1. Indiscipline proving costly for County

Michael Flynn was clear that his small squad needed to avoid injuries and suspensions if they were to get through the festive fixture list in good shape but, after Mark O’Brien’s unfortunate red card against Lincoln City, they lost Joss Labadie to a second yellow in the final minute at Adams Park.

Flynn disagreed with O’Brien’s dismissal and he was even more outspoken about Labadie’s, insisting it was a “disgusting decision” by the referee. But the skipper did appear to be warned by Charles Breakspear before he got his marching orders and that indiscipline could well cost County dear at Cheltenham Town on Saturday when both players will be banned.

2. Breakspear’s no lucky charm for the Exiles

A quick check on Breakspear’s record and in past matches involving the Exiles should have been a warning for the current squad to be extra careful against Wycombe.

The Surrey official had handed out 93 yellows and nine red cards before yesterday’s match and had previously sent off Mark O’Brien, Joe Day and David Pipe, as well as awarding Luton Town a controversial 97th-minute penalty against County at Kenilworth Road last season.

3. The Beast is still providing nightmares for defenders

Akinfenwa was a constant menace with two men, usually Ben Tozer and Joss Labadie, doubling up on him and handling him reasonably well until the closing stages.

But, just like he has three times in the past, the 16 stone striker punished a momentary lapse from the County defence and demonstrated his considerable skill to score a superb goal. Even at 35 he can still make the difference at this level.

4. Reynolds not making the most of his opportunities

Once again Flynn gave Lamar Reynolds the chance to show what he can do from the bench and once again the youngster failed to make any kind of impact on the game.

The youngster’s talent was there for all to see in pre-season, albeit against weaker opposition, but he does not currently look capable of imposing his game on League Two opponents. Could a loan move in January boost his confidence?

5. Fresh blood needed

Flynn hinted over the past few weeks that he was desperate to get through the Christmas period and get to January so that he could strengthen his squad in all areas.

It’s clear that there needs to be an injection of fresh blood to give everyone a boost and it can’t come soon enough after a demanding first five months of the season. The current squad has performed above expectations but they need a helping hand from some new recruits.