TWO goals from Jordan Cook and an own goal from Mickey Demetriou condemned Newport County AFC to defeat at Grimsby Town. Here are the talking points...

Team selection leaves Flynn open to criticism

The manager was involved in a heated discussion with an angry travelling fan after the final whistle and he defended his decision to rest some key men ahead of the Middlesbrough FA Cup replay.

Mark O’Brien, Dan Butler and Padraig Amond will all return against Boro and so should Scot Bennett and Robbie Willmott, who missed the match due to a virus and a dead leg respectively.

Flynn felt he had to freshen things up after a tired performance against Port Vale but you can understand why those who made the long trip north were disappointed by what they saw from those who were selected.

South Wales Argus:

Fringe players didn’t help their cause

The boss was adamant that the team he selected was capable of getting a result at Grimsby and, at the very least, they should have been more competitive.

Sadly, some players who were given a rare chance to show what they can do failed to grab that opportunity.

The likes of Vashon Neufville and Keanu Marsh-Brown (below) won’t really be able to argue that they deserve more minutes after failing to impress at Blundell Park.

South Wales Argus:

Too soon to judge new boy Ben Kennedy

With Harry McKirdy and Ade Azeez not deemed ready to feature, Ben Kennedy was the only deadline day signing to be involved against Grimsby.

The attacking midfielder started brightly and tested home goalkeeper Sam Russell twice in the opening stages.

His influence faded as the game wore on but he showed enough to suggest he will prove a valuable addition in time, especially considering he’s yet to train with his new teammates.

Nick Townsend growing in confidence

One big positive was the performance of goalkeeper Nick Townsend, who saved a penalty and kept his side in the game at 2-0 with a series of important stops.

The former Barnsley man was understandably nervy at Middlesbrough in the FA Cup but he’s performed well in the last two league games to show that he is an able deputy for Joe Day.

With Day’s wife Lizzie set to give birth to twins on Monday, Townsend could well be between the sticks against Boro for Tuesday’s replay and he should be far more confident than he was at the Riverside.

County can’t cure travel sickness

fter winning three successive away games in September, it is now 10 games without a win on the road in League Two and Saturday saw a seventh successive defeat.

That is not the kind of form that gets you anywhere near the play-off places and it needs to be rectified quickly or the Exiles’ campaign will die a slow death.

Flynn’s men have proved they can be an effective unit away from Rodney Parade earlier in the season, and more recently in the FA Cup, and they need to rediscover that form quickly.

Read more: Match report from Blundell Park

Read more: Flynn defends team selection after row with fan