I WAS lucky enough to get to three big games at the weekend and witness three contrasting away wins.

England were dominant in their Women’s World Cup qualifier against Wales at Rodney Parade on Friday night.

Newport County AFC were determined in their League Two clash with Port Vale at Vale Park on Saturday afternoon.

And Arsenal were just damned lucky in their Premier League success at the Cardiff City Stadium in Sunday’s early kick-off.

The three matches demonstrated perfectly the different qualities needed to earn three points on the road.

You need to subdue the hostile home fans and establish a platform to make your superiority pay, which Phil Neville’s Lionesses did to perfection in Newport.

You need to take your chances when they come and be prepared to dig in and battle your way through long periods of pressure from the hosts, which Michael Flynn’s Exiles certainly did in the Potteries.

And you need to ride your luck at times as Unai Emery’s Arsenal did against Cardiff, who lacked the quality up front to really make the Gunners pay for all their defensive frailties.

Port Vale will argue that County also had luck on their side on Saturday and there’s no doubt that the result could have been reversed if fortune had favoured the hosts.

Both Exiles goals were made possible by helpful deflections, Mickey Demetriou so nearly scored a spectacular own goal and Vale also hit the post in the second half, while many referees would have awarded a penalty when the ball struck David Pipe’s hand in the box.

But Flynn’s men, who had plenty of chances to extend their lead and could have had a couple of penalties themselves, definitely earned their luck with a superbly committed defensive display.

Over the course of a long season you need the rub of the green at times if you are to enjoy success and wins like Saturday’s will give everyone connected with County massive belief that they could be in for an exciting campaign.

The deadline day loan signing of young left-back Cameron Pring, who was an unused substitute on Saturday, and story behind is another a big boost for the club.

Pring’s arrival means Flynn now has a squad of 22 players with cover in every position and he could field two entirely different teams if everyone was fit.

It is still a small squad compared to many of their League Two rivals and the manager will have to be lucky with injuries if he is to have a chance of keeping his team anywhere close to the second position they currently occupy in the table.

But the early signs are that Flynn, along with his assistant Wayne Hatswell and management consultant Lennie Lawrence, has managed to put together a very competitive group on a reduced budget.

The Pring signing was only possible thanks to a donation from a group of supporters, which is a fantastic gesture but one that only serves to highlight the difficulties that Flynn has faced in recruiting players since the end of last season.

“The fans are unbelievable,” Flynn told the Argus last week.

“When there’s a couple of fans dipping into their pockets to pay the donation on the wages towards a player to enable us to get somebody in it’s fantastic.

“These fans want to stay anonymous so I’m not going to say too much but there are some people who live and die for this club and would do anything for it.

“It’s not the first time they have done something for us. It might not have been a player but it might have been paying towards some equipment.

“I can’t thank them enough and it shows the spirit at the club and what the club means but it just goes to show the reality of where we’re at.”

It’s a situation that hammers home the fact that the club is crying out for outside investment and shows why the fans were right to vote for a ‘hybrid’ ownership model as the way forward.

Around 75 per cent of the 750 respondents to the recent fans’ survey were in favour of a combination of the current Trust ownership and new investment.

Proposals are set to be presented at the next supporters’ meeting, which is planned for September 20.

But finding anyone inclined to pump money into a League Two football club is not easy and County are fortunate to have a management team and a set of players who are punching way above their weight right now.