January transfer article

The 2018 January transfer window has certainly been a less busy time for Newport County AFC than it was last year. Players have both joined and left the club, as Mike Flynn looks to mount a successful run to the League 2 play-offs and secure the club’s best run in the Emirates FA Cup since 1949.

Here, you can find every player to have been involved in a transfer including Newport County AFC this month.


Joined the club permanently

Paul Hayes

The 34-year was finally cleared to play for Newport County AFC having received his transfer certificate at the start of the window.

And after waiting three months to make his debut for the club, Hayes couldn’t have come much closer to a goal on his first appearance.

He came on as a late substitute against Leeds United in the stunning 2-1 Emirates FA Cup victory and almost found a way past goalkeeper Andy Lonergan with a 35-yard volleyed effort that only narrowly went past the far post.

Speaking after that Leeds game he told iFollow Exiles: “It’s been a very long time coming with the complications and problems for me not being able to play.

“Obviously, it’s been frustrating, but I am now very happy to get onto the pitch for the football club.

“And what a debut! Obviously to come on in the last few minutes, see that goal go in and be able to celebrate with the boys, what a debut for myself.”

Since then, Hayes has also come off the bench in the victory against Crawley, the draw with Morecambe and the defeat to Lincoln City.

Mike Flynn said of signing the striker: “He’s an experienced player and he’s fitted in really well with the lads.

“I’m looking forward to getting him back out on the pitch, he’s keen, he’s hard-working and the appetite is there.

“We will have to use him in the right way to start with. But he’s going to be a big asset to us before the end of the season.”

The 34-year is yet to register a competitive goal for the Exiles but is certainly looking to repay the faith shown in him by the club after the delay in his transfer.

He exclusively told iFollow Exiles: “There was nothing out there that really interested me or floated my boat.

“But I got LinkedIn and the gaffer here Mike Flynn messaged me on there because we followed each-other straight-away.

“He asked me if I had retired so I said that I hadn’t, but I was waiting for an offer that interested me.

“So he said for us to have a chat and as they say, the rest is history. We had a good chat, spoke to the chairman here as-well and within a day or two we decided that it was the right move for me and the team.

“Obviously those complications with the contract dragged it out a little bit but I just want to say that the club have been absolutely fantastic and spot on to me.

“When they found out that I couldn’t play for a while, they could have terminated the contract, left me, but they stood by me.

“I was grateful for that and I just have to repay the faith that the club and the manager have put in me. I’m looking forward now to playing for Newport and cracking on with my career.”


Josh Sheehan


Fan-favourite Josh Sheehan is the other player to sign permanently for Newport County AFC in this window.

The 22-year old re-joined the club after his successful loan spell last season, where he scored seven goals from 25 appearances.

He scored his first at Accrington Stanley on 29th October 2016, before also finding the back of the net in victories over Alfreton Town in the Emirates FA Cup, Carlisle United and Notts County.

Sheehan also scored in the cup draw with Alfreton and against Colchester at Rodney Parade, while his only other goal came in the Boxing Day defeat to Portsmouth.

So far this campaign, he has started for the Exiles on two occasions, making his second debut for the club against Crawley Town and also playing in the draw with Morecambe.

He also came on as a late substitute against Lincoln City, although has yet to find the net for the Exiles.

Speaking on his first press day for the club he said: “I’ve been fully fit for a few months, but I’ve just been waiting for January to come really so I could come here.

“Don’t get me wrong, it’s been tough to be out for so long, but I’ve been doing extra gym and everything the physio’s have told me to make sure I was ready to come back here.

“As soon as Newport came calling it was an easy decision to join. The club has been doing really well and I wanted to be a part of that really.

“There is a big change in mentality here now and we truly are looking to win every game.

“The manager is really good here, all the boys are buying into his philosophy here, so we just keep going.

“I really enjoyed it last time, scoring goals made a big difference because I could settle in quicker. My form kept going on, got confidence, and just went from there.    

“The main thing for me is to get first-team football and I wanted to come to somewhere where I felt loved. Hopefully, I can show the fans what I can bring again.

“It’s a very strong squad here, there’s almost two players for every position if you know what I mean. It’s a really strong squad so hopefully we can achieve promotion.”

And Mike Flynn is evidently expecting Sheehan to rediscover his rich vein of scoring form over the course of his 18-month contract.

He added: “He’s a talented footballer and I’m very pleased to have him here. All the hard work chairman Gavin Foxall did behind the scenes with myself has paid off and I’m over the moon with it.”


Loan Extension

Shawn McCoulsky

Super striker, Shawn McCoulsky, signed a sixth month loan deal when he joined the Club in the Summer. 

The manager expressed his desire to keep #McGoalsky at the Club when the January Transfer window opened and the deal was finally confirmed a few weeks later.

It's no suprise that the manager was keen to keep the 21-year-old striker at the Club, McCoulsky was the first player at the Club to hit ten goals in all competions including an iconic goal against Leeds United.

Once the loan extension was completed, Michael Flynn expressed his delight in getting the deal over the line:

"I’m glad I’ve managed to keep him," he said.  "I can relax a bit now!

"I was worried about it because he is scoring goals and the hardest thing to do in football is to score goals.

"He’s doing well at scoring goals in this moment and I’m delighted to have him here until the end of the season. It’s one less player for me to worry about now."  


Joined the Club on Loan

Aaron Collins

Another ex-Exile in Aaron Collins was the first to walk through the door as a January loan addition.

The 20-year old made 25 appearances for the club first time round, before being snapped up by Championship outfit Wolverhampton Wanderers in January 2016.

He scored three goals whilst with the club, the first coming on 15th August 2015 as Stevenage scored late to secure a 2-2 draw.

Collins also found the net against Swindon in the CheckaTrade Trophy and in a crucial 1-0 win at York City, whilst also scoring in the intermittent period when on loan at Notts County, Tranmere Rovers and Maidstone United.

He has yet to feature for the Exiles since joining on loan, but Flynn is expecting to get the best out of the player this season.

He commented: “He’s definitely someone that I know I can get the best out of because I’ve done it before.

“He’s very eager to come here, the move only came around last minute, and it’s a good job really that I watched him for Maidstone on TV.

“I know he’s got the capabilities and I’ve seen he’s got the hunger to do it again.” 

And Collins certainly expressed his delight at signing back with his hometown team when he arrived.

He said: “I am delighted to come back to my hometown club.  I can’t wait to get started and hopefully help the club move up the table.”


Tyler Reid

Reid signed on loan until the end of the season from Swansea City in order to provide County with some much-needed cover at right-back.

He has made two appearance for the club to date, helping the Exiles secure a victory at Grimsby Town on his debut with a composed and powerful display from the bench. Reid also came off the bench again in the victory over Crawley Town at Rodney Parade. 

The 20-year old joins the club having made over 50 appearances for the Swansea City U23 side, playing against County this season in the CheckaTrade trophy, while he was also part of the Manchester United youth setup as a youngster.

And Flynn was certainly pleased to sign a player with an impressive pedigree for the club.

He added: “Tyler will bring energy, strength and an attacking threat.

“But he will have to work hard to get into the team.This is a big signing for us and only made possible by our close relationship with Swansea. 

“Tyler was obviously brought up the Manchester United way so has a very high pedigree and I’m really looking forward to him showing what he’s got in his locker and helping us on our journey.”


Emmanuel Osadebe

Osadebe was the last player to walk through the door at Newport County AFC this January transfer window following his loan move from Cambridge United.

He has made one appearance for the club so far, that coming as a half-time substitute against Morecambe.

And he almost made the dream debut for the club, coming mightily close to a goal with a clever effort on the turn.

Speaking after that game he exclusively told iFollow Exiles: “I’m happy but of course, there’s still a lot to work on in terms of my own performance.

“45 minutes is the first-minutes that I’ve had in a while, been out of the squad at Cambridge recently, and to get here and get some minutes is good.

“But still a lot to do, if I work hard then I’ll get back to 100% easily.

“I am just glad to be back on the pitch, get some minutes under my belt, but I felt we gave away two points today.”

The 21-year old also has experience playing for Gillingham, alongside a spell in the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation College Programme, but is eagerly looking to stake his claim for a place at Newport County AFC

He added: “What the fans can expect is for me to give my all and try to push us to get as many goals as we can, as many assists as we can and ultimately, get us into the play-offs or even the automatic promotion places.

“It’s there for us to achieve, the boys here are very good and together, I think we can really do something good this season.

“If we keep a positive mindset after today, then we’ll be in there by the end of the season I think.”

Mike Flynn commented of the deal: “He can bring energy, versatility and can play in a few positions.

“He’s got height and is a very good footballer. I’m looking forward to it. He’s got a good pedigree, but he’s got to fight to get in the team at the moment.”


Left the Club on Loan

Lamar Reynolds

Reynolds agreed a deal earlier this window to sign with ex-County manager Justin Edinburgh at Leyton Orient until the end of the season.

The 22-year old made 16 appearances for the club up until January, including starting at Leeds United in the Carabao Cup, as he underwent his first attempt at professional football.

He scored his first professional goal on 7th November in the CheckaTrade Trophy defeat to Cheltenham Town, calmly looping the ball over Scott Flinders after a clever through ball from Joe Quigley.

Mike Flynn said of allowing Reynolds to leave the club temporarily: “I think he needs to go and learn the game a bit more. And he’ll have more chance to do that at Leyton Orient than he will here at the moment.

“I have a lot of time for Lamar, but I don’t know what I’m going to get out of him and that’s the truth. He needs to go and learn the game that little bit more and I think Justin Edinburgh will help him.

“I’m sure he will start picking things up with Justin and what you’ve got to realise is that he’s still young and he’s never played at this level before.

“Instead of being selfish and letting him stay here, I think it was more beneficial for us in the long term that he went out on loan now.”

Reynolds signed a two-year contract when joining the Exiles in the summer and understands that a positive loan spell with Orient could pave the way for him to force a first-team spot in South Wales next season.

He told the Leyton Orient website: “I’m really excited to be here. It’s another good opportunity for me to go and showcase what I can do so I’m just buzzing to be here really.

“Leyton Orient are a big club, around the corner from where I live, so I can’t see anything going wrong at the club.

“It’s good to learn from players wherever you are and Leyton Orient have a lot of experienced players. It will be a good learning experience here at Leyton Orient.”


Left the Club Permanently

Aaron Williams

Williams left Newport County AFC to re-join Brackley Town after a successful six-month loan from the summer.

The 24-year old scored an impressive 22 goals in the National League North during the initial loan spell with the club and will be looking to restart his goal scoring form after signing permanently with the club.

He also scored three crucial goals whilst with the Exiles last season, as he truly played a big part in helping County to their famous ‘Great Escape.’

Williams scored in the win over Hartlepool United, while also finding the back of the net in the home draw with Morecambe and the heavy defeat at Plymouth Argyle.

On letting Williams leave the club Flynn said: “With Aaron leaving it has freed up a little bit of money.  

“He’s saved the club all his wages. There was no money in the settlement, so fair play to Aaron, he realised he wanted to play and was thinking more about next season.

“It’s not just saving us money until the end of the season, it’s June and July as-well. If he went on loan, then we would still have to pay him so he has saved us some money.”

Everyone at Newport County AFC would like to wish Aaron the very best of luck for his future endeavours.


Returned to Parent Club

Joe Quigley

Quigley returned to AFC Bournemouth following the completion of his six-month loan deal at Newport County AFC.

The 21-year old made five appearances with the club, making his debut in the historic 1-0 victory at Coventry City.

He also played against Leeds, Forest Green and Luton, before making his final appearance with the club in the CheckaTrade Trophy defeat to Cheltenham Town where he assisted the goal for Lamar Reynolds.

Joe has since joined Boreham Wood on loan where he found the net on Saturday in their 3-0 victory at Ebbsfleet United.

We would like to wish Joe every success at Boreham Wood this season and with his future career.


Academy Roundup

Six players from Byron Anthony’s youth side left the club this month on work experience loans.

Evan Press, who made his debut for the first team in the CheckaTrade Trophy defeat to Cheltenham Town, has joined Welsh League Division One side Undy Athletic.

Joe Hunt and Michael Cook, the latter being the academy’s top scorer for the first half of the season, have both joined Cinderford Town in the Southern League One West division.

Tom Savigar scored the first goal of his loan at Port Talbot Town last weekend, a club he has been joined at by defender Jay Williams.

Liam Warman was the last player to agree a loan deal away from the club, joining Pen-Y-Bont in Welsh League Division One.

Academy Manager Byron Anthony said: “It is really important for the second-year scholars to gain first team football experience, we are grateful to the loan clubs for giving them this opportunity; this will be beneficial to the players future development.”