DINO Maamria was at least partially responsible for many a miserable afternoon at Rodney Parade for Newport County AFC fans and now we can add another one to the list.

Exiles supporters don’t have happy memories of Maamria’s brief stint as Graham Westley’s assistant during the 2016-2017 season but he believes his time in Newport has provided him with a blueprint to beat Michael Flynn’s men.

His Stevenage side did it in April 2018 and they were only beaten by a 98th-minute Antoine Semenyo goal on their last visit to Rodney Parade last October.

Maamria’s Boro side also beat County at home on New Year’s Day and his first trip to Newport as Oldham Athletic boss saw his struggling side again earn all three points.

The Latics arrived in 22nd place with just one win in seven league games and no league victory on the road since August 24.

They left having moved up to 20th, five points clear of bottom club Morecambe, and with their confidence boosted by a fully deserved win.

Flynn thought both sides were poor but the visitors were better in all departments and Maamria got his tactics spot on to leave the hosts looking toothless.

Once Zak Mills had beaten Ryan Haynes to the ball after Nick Townsend had saved from Jonny Smith and fired inside the post in first-half stoppage time, there only looked like being one winner.

“It was a fantastic performance, a brilliant win and we needed it,” said Maamria.

“To come here and play like that against a team that is well known for their ferocity at home is great.

“We dealt well with the long balls and when we got the ball, we played a bit.

“In the second half I don’t think they got in our box once. The application of the lads was very pleasing.

“We defended as a team, we got after them as a team, we pressed them high, we rushed their clearances and we made them predictable. We limited them.

“I don’t think many teams will come to Newport and produce a performance like that.

South Wales Argus:

“Nobody gave us a chance of coming here and I had to work on their belief to come here and get the three points,” added the Tunisian.

“I know Newport and their players pretty well and I knew what to expect from them.

“I had 10 days to work on this game because we had last weekend off and that worked for us.

“I know all their players inside out, and I know Flynny pretty well, I know their fans get behind them and we kept them quiet by dominating their team.”

Flynn admitted afterwards that there were too many long balls, too many poor passes and not enough ideas.

Oldham’s extravagantly-named goalkeeper Zeus De La Paz might as well have been on Mount Olympus for all the action he saw.

A Ryan Inniss header skimmed the top of the bar early on and the keeper got down well to keep out a Scot Bennett effort on the hour, but otherwise the Curaçao international was barely tested.

County have now lost three in a row in the league for the first time since last December and Friday’s FA Cup trip to eighth-tier Maldon & Tiptree suddenly looks a little more daunting.

Flynn is backing his team to turn things round, just as they have in the past when going through similar blips, but he knows they must improve quickly.

County: Townsend, McNamara (Dolan, 62), Inniss, O’Brien, Haynes, Bennett, Labadie (Maloney, 68), Whitely (Nurse, 77), Amond, Abrahams, Matt

Subs not used: King, Howkins, Jefferies, Poleon

Booked: Labadie, Abrahams, Bennett, Inniss

Referee: Craig Hicks

Attendance: 3,748 (207 Oldham)