MANAGER James Rowberry knows Newport County AFC are likely to need nine points from nine to stand a chance of making the  League Two play-offs after a frustrating 1-0 loss at Sutton United.

The Exiles had the better of the game at Gander Green Lane but it was the hosts that took the spoils thanks to Rob Milsom’s penalty on the stroke of half-time.

County had 58 per cent possession, fired in 13 shots to seven, had six corners and a raft of long throws.

However, they fired a blank and defeat saw them drop to 10th in the table, three points behind seventh-placed Tranmere.

County will climb back into the play-offs if they beat Colchester in Newport on Friday night and then they will know what is needed when they travel to Port Vale on Bank Holiday Monday at the start of May, a fixture that is followed by Rochdale at Rodney Parade.

“You just don’t know but we will try to win every game anyway. Get nine points from nine and it would give us 75 points, and normally around that mark gets in the play-offs,” said Rowberry.

“If we can do what we did at Sutton, we will be fine. We just have to keep doing what we are trying to do and keep believing in what we are trying to achieve.

“There is emotion and frustration after the disappointment at the key moments in the game, which we needed to do better but on the whole it’s an improved place to where we are as a team and a club.

“Friday will be a big game and it’s a quick turnaround, we just have to be the best that we can be.

"I felt as though we did that at Sutton but there is just frustration because we need just a little bit more.”

County goalkeeper Joe Day wasn’t forced into a single save but was beaten by Milsom after Scot Bennett brought down dangerman David Ajiboye.

“It was a penalty but I felt as though we should have had one as well,” said Rowberry, who was booked for dissent after complaining about that decision plus the decision to add on just four minutes.

“It was handball, he caught it between his hands. I just can’t understand why he didn’t give it – I could see it clearly from the dugout.”

“I thought that we did enough to win the game, we created enough chances it was just that one moment in the first half that was disappointing,” he continued.

“They didn’t really threaten our goal to any great effect. We had double the amount of shots, although we have got to get more on target. We have to go again after a frustrating day.”