GOALS from Padraig Amond, Jamille Matt and substitute Harry McKirdy earned Newport County AFC a comfortable 3-0 win at Cambridge United. Here are the talking points...

Double top as front two hit 40

It’s been a sensational season for County’s front two, but both Amond and Matt were on a barren run before arriving at the Abbey Stadium.

Amond’s fourth-minute header was his first goal since the win over Carlisle United on March 2, while Matt’s 34th-minute header ended his eight-game drought stretching back to the win at Notts County on February 19.

It was no less than they deserved for another all-action performance and with Amond now on 22 goals and Matt 18 they have hit the 40-goal mark for the season and given themselves a major confidence boost at a crucial stage of the campaign.

McKirdy gives Flynn food for thought

It’s been a frustrating time for McKirdy since he arrived on loan from Aston Villa on deadline day, with just one start and a handful of substitute appearances to show what he can do.

Michael Flynn admitted afterwards that the young forward had been pestering him for a chance and, even though he was only introduced in the 89th minute, McKirdy certainly took his chance to shine.

The 22-year-old raced on and scored within a minute with his first touch – a beautiful finish to put the cap on an excellent afternoon’s work from the Exiles.

South Wales Argus:

Clean sheet number 20 for the season

The first-half goals put the visitors in charge at the Abbey Stadium, but Cambridge did at least make a game of it in the second half and County had to defend well to remain in control of the contest.

Dan Butler was fortunate not to concede a penalty and he, Mark O’Brien, Mickey Demetriou and Regan Poole (above) had their hands full with the lively Rushian Hepburn-Murphy.

And Joe Day once again pulled off several important stops to keep the U’s at bay and claim his 17th and County’s 20th clean sheet of the season.

Play-offs still within Exiles' reach

With only five games left to play, County remain in the hunt for a top-seven finish – even if other results did not all go their way on Saturday.

Exeter City’s win over Port Vale means they remain five points above the Exiles and Forest Green Rovers also won to stay seven points above Flynn’s men.

But the Exiles, who have a game in hand over all the teams above them, cannot be written off yet and they did rise to 12th – just a point below Carlisle in eighth.

The 3-0 win also helped boost the goal difference, but that could still be County’s Achilles heel in the final shake up.

Read more: Match report from the Abbey Stadium

Read more: Flynn hails 'near-enough perfect' away performance