NEWPORT County AFC manager Michael Flynn has warned his players that they must keep on fighting until the end of the season or face being released in the summer.

County’s 1-0 win over Cheltenham Town on Friday night means they are six points below the League Two play-off places with nine games left to play.

But, even if they cannot sustain a top-seven challenge, Flynn is adamant that nobody will be taking it easy before the final game of the season at Morecambe on May 4.

“I won’t let the season peter out,” said the Exiles boss.

“If they think the season is going to peter out then they’re going to be on the scrapheap come the summer.

“I’m not even thinking about the play-offs, but the players have got to think about their futures over the next nine games.

“If they want to take their foot off the gas, they’re not ruining my career. They can ruin their own, but they’re not ruining mine. I won’t be putting up with that, no chance.

“All the players who are out of contract have to think about that.

“But I think we saw [on Friday] that they won’t do that.”

Goalkeeper Joe Day, defenders Dan Butler, Mickey Demetriou, Mark O’Brien, David Pipe and Tyler Forbes, and midfielders Joss Labadie, Andrew Crofts, Matty Dolan, Will Randall and Josh Sheehan are all out of contract this summer.

Pipe and Sheehan have made 20 and 19 starts respectively this season and both came on at half-time against Cheltenham and made a positive impact.

“Josh Sheehan did well when he came on but it has been a bit of a frustrating season for him,” said Flynn.

“He started well and then he came off the boil a little bit.

“But he’s a good kid. He’s someone I’ve got a lot of time for. He works hard and maybe he deserves a run.

“We’ll see. It’s up to him to keep the shirt now.

“If he plays well every game then he keeps the shirt, same as anybody.”

South Wales Argus:

Asked if 35-year-old right-back Pipe had another season in him, the manager said: “I don’t know. I’ve spoken to him.

“One thing with David Pipe is that he’s always fit so it means it’s not a wasted wage. Whether or not that’s enough, I don’t know.

“He made a difference when he came on, but Regan [Poole] has been superb at right-back and that hasn’t been our problem area.”

The postponement of the home clash with Oldham Athletic due to the Latics’ international call-ups means County are enjoying a break from action until they go to Yeovil Town on March 30.

And top scorer Padraig Amond believes the rest will do them good.

“It’s a little bit different for all of us to have this gap now with no games in 15 days and then we’ve got four games in 15 days after that,” said Amond.

“It’s mad the way it works but that’s just the way the league can be.

“We’ll have a couple of days off and it’s nice to have a break, because it has been a lot of games lately.

“And it means we should be physically and mentally a little bit fresher going into the last nine games of the season.”

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