Michael Flynn was nothing other than proud of the effort and determination from his Newport County AFC players, but he was left to rue a missed opportunity after exiting the Carabao Cup with a 2-0 defeat against West Ham United at Rodney Parade.
Goals either side of half time from England international Jack Wilshere and Spanish international Pablo Fornals – both of whom were netting their first goals for the club – settled the contest for the Hammers as the Premier League side advanced to the next round.
But County more than matched a team 58 places above them in the league pyramid for most of the game but they couldn’t convert their chances, Padraig Amond drew a fine save from Roberto before the break while Josh Sheehan hit the crossbar late on.
It means County’s wait to reach the Third Round of the competition for the first time since 1962 goes on for at least another year, but there were loads of positives to take from a battling display in-front of the SKY Sports cameras.
“I thought we were very good,” Flynn affirmed. “But you can’t make those mistakes like we did for the goals. And you can’t afford to miss those chances we had.
“We’ve had two sitters and if we’d have scored first, it would have been a different game. It’s always nice when Mr. Pellegrini says how impressed he was with our team, but you still want to win those games.
“We’ve gone out there and created some really good opportunities and chances. We’ve looked a good team and it’s always important you do that live on TV because no one wants to be embarrassed.
“They worked extremely hard and I’m gutted for them that they didn’t take their chances. The way we lost is a little bit frustrating but there are so many positives
“It’s good that we’ve created lots of opportunities against a Premier League football club.
“The boys are in good form, their fitness is good and hopefully we’ll have a few more back and ready to be involved on Saturday.”
ON THE ROAD | The Exiles make the short trip to Forest Green Rovers on Saturday looking to maintain their club record unbeaten run in the Football League. Buy tickets now.
AT RODNEY PARADE | County again face the Hammers next Wednesday, although this time it is their U23s in the Leasing.Com trophy. Keeping checking the Club’s channels for further information regarding this fixture.