NEWPORT County goalkeeper Glyn Thompson admits Tuesday’s defeat to Braintree means the Exiles are still in a relegation dogfight this season.

County once again paid the penalty for ill-discipline with Lee Minshull given his marching orders after just eight minutes and despite a gallant display the ten men went on to lose 4-3.

It was an entertaining encounter but the result leaves Newport still embroil-ed in the basement battle ahead of two weeks without Conference action.

The Exiles now face back-to-back ties against Wealdstone in the FA Trophy and Thompson admits the players are concerned at the predicament.

“Everyone is disappointed, we battled hard but the sending off just killed the game for us and to us it seems like a daft decision,” he said.

“We have had nine players sent off this season and it’s a horrible statistic to have. I know it’s easy to say but so many of those decisions seem to have gone against us. We just have to stick together and keep battling.”

The goalkeeper defended Minshull and also felt aggrieved that the fourth Braintree goal was allowed to stand.

“Lee knows he caught the player but says there was no intent and he was distraught,” he said.

“It happens numerous times in football, incidents like that and it knocked the stuffing out of us.

“The fourth goal I was also upset about. I felt their player completely took me out and after battling so hard as a ten I didn’t think we deserved nothing out of the game. We worked hard and did as much as we could but everyone is just disappointed we couldn’t achieve the result we wanted.”

Thompson admits he is delighted to still be with the club after previous manager Anthony Hudson banned him from training after he refused to sign a full-time contract and give up a part-time job with Shrewsbury.

“It’s been a surreal season for me for numerous reasons,” he said. “On the first day I was told not to train and not to come back. To go from that to hopefully playing in a showcase final at Wembley would be incredible.

“It’s a great game to look forward to and we are all determined to get the result we want.

“To be this close and have an opportunity to go to Wembley is everything you dream of.

“We need to focus on Saturday as a one-off game, the second leg is a factor but not one we need to consider now.”