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EXCLUSIVE | Regan Poole talks draw with Mansfield Town in play off semi-final first leg

10 May 2019

Regan Poole says Newport County AFC must take a huge amount of confidence with them up to Mansfield Town on Sunday evening after extending their unbeaten run to 11 matches.

The Exiles haven’t been faultless in every single one of those contests, but they are finding different ways to grind out results and keep this run going.

In the first leg of the play-off semi-final at Rodney Parade, the two sides had differing spells of dominance which ultimately resulted in a 1-1 stalemate.

For the second match in a row, County had to score late to salvage a draw as Padraig Amond tapped home the rebound after his initial penalty was saved to cancel out CJ Hamilton’s early opener.

Both sides created further opportunities in South Wales, but Stags goalkeeper Conrad Logan pulled off two stunning saves either side of half-time to deny a header from Jamille Matt and a lobbed attempt from Amond.

The draw sets the tie up perfectly for the return leg in Nottinghamshire on Sunday (18:00pm kick-off) which is again live on SKY Sports Main Event.

Here, you can read exactly what Poole exclusively told iFollow Exiles

 

On the draw with Mansfield Town…

"I think we started the game quite slow, but we got into the game after that and finished really well. In the end, I think we deserved to win the game. If we had started better, then we would have won the game.

"I don’t even think it was us, it was more them starting so strongly. In the opening five minutes, they came out very strong and very fast.

"I suppose we just weren’t expecting that. They got the goal but actually, from when they got the goal, I think we stepped it up and got better as the game went on.

"Everyone thought Mansfield might be down and start a bit slow after last weekend, but it was the complete opposite and they came out of the blocks firing.

"Fair play to them, but I thought we finished the game as the better team. Hopefully we can start like that at their place and go on and get the win to get to Wembley."

 

On getting ready to go again for the second leg…

"It would have been nice to go there with a win but it’s still all to play for and we believe we can beat them up there.

"If there was more time left, we could have pushed for another goal, but we still go there with something to play for which is really important on Sunday.

"I think they controlled it early doors but then we grew into it and as you say, we had the better chances in the end. If Jamma scores early in the first half, then it’s 1-1 after half an hour and a completely different game.

"We’re quite happy to go there and give it a real good go.

"The first 20 minutes are really important in every game, but especially away from home.

"If we go there and start like they did here then it’s game on. Let’s see what we’re made of."

 

On his aim of achieving promotion…

"I had an aim when I first came here, and my aim was to help get this club promoted. I’ve played here before, this club got me where I am today, and I’m thankful for that which is why I want to repay them by getting them up to League One.

"We’ve done really well so far by climbing the table, getting a lot of clean sheets and now we’re on an undefeated run.

"My aim is still going quite strong and let’s see if we can conquer that and get to Wembley.

"The play-offs are the most interesting way to get promoted, I wouldn’t say it’s the best way to get promoted.

"I suppose it is the best way if we do manage to get through the play-offs and get promoted but it’s not the easiest that’s for sure."

 

On wanting a big following at Field Mill on Sunday…

"We want to give the supporters everything to cheer for. They were brilliant up at Morecambe and here again at Rodney Parade, as they always are.

"We just want to make them happy and we’ll give it everything we’ve got on Sunday.

"The fans are a big part of it. It’s crucial that we do start right on Sunday, the fans have been brilliant across 90 minutes in every match since I’ve been here, and they’ve got us over the line numerous time.

"That’s a credit to them and let’s see if they can get us over the line on Sunday as well."


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