BOSS Michael Flynn was brutally honest in his assessment of Newport County AFC’s performance in defeat at Colchester United on Saturday, admitting the 3-0 loss was “a difficult one to watch”.

The match at the JobServe Community Stadium, against a side who have now moved back into the League Two play-off places, marked two years to the day that Flynn took charge of the Exiles.

But he and the 141-strong army of travelling supporters didn’t get the display they wanted, with Flynn describing it as “very flat”.

If another heavy away reverse wasn’t enough, further salt was rubbed into the County wounds by former striker Frank Nouble thanks to his impressive second-half finish.

The hosts were two goals to the good at that stage – Sammie Szmodics and the talented Courtney Senior had netted before the interval – as Flynn’s men struggled to create anything of real note.

Padraig Amond, called into the provisional Republic of Ireland squad last week, and strike partner Jamille Matt fed off scraps all afternoon on a bitingly cold day in Essex.

“It was a difficult one to watch,” said Flynn. “We were outplayed.

“Actually, we started okay in the first 20 minutes, we were quite bright, and it was pretty even.

“And then we got outplayed for the rest of the 70 minutes.”

He added: “Of course they (the County players) are capable of so much more, but they looked flat, very flat again.

“We got outplayed, I’m not going to make any excuses. I thought Colchester were worthy of the three points.”

There was a bone of contention over Szmodics’ opener with the Exiles adamant another former Rodney Parade man, Ryan Jackson, handled the ball prior to his teammate prodding home.

“It was handball, but that didn’t cost us the game,” said Flynn.

“First goals are important. We made the wrong choice in the first two or three minutes when Jamma (Matt) tried to shoot and hit the side-netting – we should have squared it.

“That first goal, I know it changes games, but it didn’t cost us the match because I felt Colchester were very good and we looked way off it.”

He continued: “I’m going to have a lot of anniversaries over my career – you win some, you lose some, and you might even draw some.

“Hopefully I’m in this game for a long time.

“The first one I had was great when we won, I can’t remember the one-year anniversary.

“The second-year one was poor, but it happens.”