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Match Reports

REPORT| Amond and Labadie fire Exiles to victory over Yeovil Town

7 October 2017

Padraig Amond scored for the third consecutive game at Rodney Parade with Joss Labadie also scoring as the Exiles eased to a 2-0 victory over Yeovil Town.

And both goals were the product of Matty Dolan corners. Amond headed home on 44 minutes from six-yards, before Labadie secured the win with his own header from a little further out on 55 minutes.

The result means the Exiles spoilt Darren Way’s 100th game in charge of the visitors, moving up to 8th in the process.

Mike Flynn elected to make three changes to the side that lost to Luton Town 3-1 last weekend. Two of those were enforced and one was tactical.

In defence, Mark O’Brien failed a late fitness test and was replaced by Dan Butler, with Robbie Willmott also absent through a suspected knee injury, Matty Dolan returning to face his former employer.

The final change also came in midfield, as Sean Rigg made way for Scot Bennett. That meant the Exiles reverted back to their usual 3-5-2 formation, with Frank Nouble and Padraig Amond continuing up-front.

Glovers manager Darren Way chose to make two changes to his side that suffered their first home defeat of the season last weekend.

Nathan Smith returned from his suspension to replace Omar Sowunmi, while Connor Smith also came into the side in place of Jake Gray.

That saw them line-up in a 5-2-3 formation with Francois Zoko through the middle.

And Dolan, who spent two years with the Glovers before joining County in the summer, had the opening opportunity within 30 seconds.

The ball fell invitingly to the midfielder on the edge-of-the-area after Nouble burst down the right-side, but the Yeovil defence stifled the opportunity to clear.

Glovers fans didn’t have to wait too much longer for their first chance, Francois Zoko seeing a shot blocked wide, as it would be fair to say that the visitors were putting together some intricate passing moves in the early stages.

Amond headed over as the game approached the 10-minute mark, both sides starting brightly and causing each other problems.  

And just two minutes later, the Exiles really should have been in-front.

The chance came as the product of a well-constructed 15 pass move, with David Pipe playing a cross-field ball to Butler to split the Yeovil defence apart. A one-two with Nouble saw Butler in down the left, with the full back unselfishly squaring for Labadie, who skied the ball over the top from all of five yards.

And County could have been punished for that missed opportunity on 20 minutes, had Joe Day not pulled off one of the saves of the season. Zoko tried what looked to be a speculative attempt from 30 yards, only for the ball to ricochet off Mickey Demetriou.

But even though Day had originally gone the wrong way, he somehow managed to get a hand to it to clip it past the post.

It took until the 27th minute for referee Nicholas Kinseley to give out the game’s first yellow-card, Labadie the offender, for a leading arm when competing in an aerial duel with Matt Worthington.

As the game approached the half-hour mark, it would be fair to say that both sides had made positive starts to the game. The quality of the passing from both sides was superb, the two midfields looking particularly menacing.

County had the ball in the net on 34 minutes, only for the linesman’s flag to rule out Labadie’s attempt, after the County captain had reacted quickest to a fine save from Artur Krysiak to deny Amond’s headed attempt.

A fine punched clearance from Krysiak kept County at bay again with five minutes of the half to go, the Exiles clearly commanding the game in terms of aerial duels.

The first yellow card for the visitors arrived on 44 minutes, after Ex-Exile Sid Nelson was adjudged to have pulled down Dolan about 30-yards out.

And from the resulting free-kick, County almost took the lead as Bennett saw a header just tipped around the post from Krysiak.

But Krysiak couldn’t do anything to stop County finally taking the lead from the following corner, as Amond powered home a header from just outside the six-yard area for his third goal in as many games at Rodney Parade.

The celebration of the goal elapsed the indication of additional time, three added on at the end of the first-half.

Dolan was booked as the half came to a close, with both sides having bright spells in the opening 45 minutes.

County and especially Demetriou were controlling the aerial duels, although Yeovil were putting together some intricate passing moves when in possession.

Labadie had a glorious chance to double the County advantage just a minute into the second-half, unlucky to see his header palmed away by the goalkeeper.

It was one-way traffic at this point for the Exiles, Amond unlucky to not connect to a Nouble cross, before Labadie came close again with a strike that clipped the crossbar.

But it wouldn’t require another chance for the County captain to finally get his deserved goal. And it was another assist for Dolan, with Labadie coolly dispatching a header that Nelson couldn’t clear off the line.

That came on 55 minutes, and County were unlucky to not extend the lead even further with Demetriou twice coming close from headers.

Tom James had a chance to give the visitors some rest bite on 65 minutes, only to blast over his free-kick as the Exiles continued to press the visitors.

County’s first substitution of the game came in the 71st minute, Dolan replaced to a standing ovation from both sets of fans, as Sean Rigg came on.

A late-ditch clearance from Nathan Smith prevented Amond from getting his second on 75 minutes, before Krysiak denied the Irishman two minutes later with a decent stop.

Demetriou came close with a free-kick as the game entered the final five minutes, Tozer also unlucky to see a header saved.

Lamar Reynolds came on for the second County replacement, Amond withdrawing, and it only took 20 seconds for Reynolds to have an impact.

His waltzing run forced a corner, which Labadie couldn’t convert from. That was his final involvement of the game, as Tom Owen-Evans replaced his captain, Labadie awarded the man-of-the-match award for his display.

The indication of four additional minutes gave the visitors license to really try and rescue something from the game, Olomola smacking one off the crossbar right at the start of the added time.

But if anything, after that opportunity, it was the Exiles that ended the game strongest. Reynolds had a shot saved by Krysiak at the death, as the Exiles continued their unbeaten record at Rodney Parade with a convincing display.

   

County: Day, Pipe, Butler, White, Demetriou, Bennett, Tozer, Dolan (Rigg 71'), Labadie (Owen-Evans 90’), Nouble, Amond (Reynolds 86’)

Subs not used: Bittner, Barnum-Bobb, McCoulsky, Jahraldo

 

Yeovil: Krysiak, N Smith, Nelson, Bailey (C), Worthington (Santos 80’), Khan (Surridge 51’), C Smith (Browne 58’), Dickson, James, Zoko, Olomola

Subs not used: Mugabi, Davies, Gray, Maddison

 

Referee: Nicholas Kinseley

Attendance: 3,689 (291 away)

Next up for County: Swansea City U23s (10th October) CheckaTrade Trophy 7:30pm HOME


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