Newport County AFC will be hoping to return to winning ways on Saturday afternoon when travelling to face highflyers Swindon Town. The Exiles didn’t manage to defeat the Robins in any meeting last season so they’ll be looking to put that right, while the home side will be looking to continue their impressive start to the campaign.
Here, find all the facts and statistics ahead of this League Two encounter…
How they’ve started the League Two campaign
The Robins have started the 2019/20 League Two campaign in imperious form having accrued 20 points from the opening 10 matches when ascending to fourth spot – three places above the Exiles.
They’ve scored three times or more on four occasions already having secured six wins in the opening ten matches – defeating Scunthorpe United, Carlisle United, Morecambe, Leyton Orient, Macclesfield Town and Cambridge United.
County will be looking to take inspiration from the fact that on the two occasions Swindon have lost this season, both matches have been at The County Ground against Northampton Town and Colchester United. They’ve also drawn with Exeter City and Cheltenham Town.
Swindon Town manager Richie Wellens will have a couple of selection headaches to contend with ahead of welcoming Newport County AFC to Wiltshire on Saturday afternoon.
Winger Kaiyne Woolery has been declared fit but Wellens confirmed attacker Keshi Anderson (hamstring) and Mathieu Baudry (ankle) will undergo late fitness tests. Defender Jordan Lyden remains sidelined.
Swindon Town team vs Cambridge United (4-4-2): McCormick, Iandolo, Fryers, Conroy (C), Hunt, Anderson (Woolery 15’), Grant, Rose (May 72’), Isgrove (Doughty 66’), Doyle, Yates
One to Watch – Eoin Doyle
A striker with a proven track record of scoring goals, Eoin Doyle has again started the campaign with some imperious form having scored seven goals already from 11 appearances.
A summer arrival from Bradford City on a season long loan, the 31-year old netted his first Robins goal in a draw with league leaders Exeter City before scoring doubles against Cheltenham Town, Morecambe and Macclesfield Town.
The Irishman has also plied his trade for Shamrock Rovers, Sligo Rovers, Hibernian, Chesterfield, Cardiff City, Preston North End, Portsmouth and Oldham Athletic.
Manager – Richie Wellens
A relatively inexperienced manager, Richie Wellens has drawn praise from many for his attacking and free flowing philosophy and it’s no surprise that Swindon are one of the top goal scorers in League Two thus far.
Appointed to replace ex-Premier League manager Phil Brown last November, Wellens will welcome County to Wiltshire boasting a 40.5%-win ratio as Robins boss. He has won 17 of his 42 matches so far, drawing 12 and losing the remaining 13.
This is Wellens’ second managerial position after an ill-fated spell at Oldham Athletic. The 39-year old took over the Latics during the 2017/18 campaign but couldn’t prevent relegation to the fourth tier and was subsequently dismissed.
Stadium – The County Ground
One of the oldest stadiums left in the Football League, the County Ground was built in 1896 and has been home to Swindon Town ever since.
It has been an all-seater stadium since the early 1990s – around the time that the Robins played their one and only season in the Premier League – and has an official capacity of 15,728.
On matchday, County supporters will be housed in the western corner of the Arkell’s Stand, where up to 1,200 fans could be accommodated. No away figures were provided by Swindon Town in either visit last season.
Meetings between the two clubs in 2018/19
Newport County AFC and Swindon Town met on three occasions last season as they were drawn together in the same CheckaTrade Trophy group alongside fixtures in League Two.
The Exiles – alongside Chelsea U21s – qualified from the group stages but Swindon did inflict defeat on County in matchday one as Michael Doughty’s late penalty settled a tight contest on September 11th.
In the first of the league meetings, Swindon again came out victorious as Kaiyne Woolery’s late strike settled a 2-1 victory for the Robins on December 8th. Doughty again scored past the Exiles, this time after 61 seconds, while Padraig Amond had levelled with a bullet header.
At Rodney Parade, Swindon ensured they remained unbeaten against County for the campaign by controlling proceedings in a 0-0 draw on April 9th.
Referee: David Rock
Assistant Referee 1: Louis Marks
Assistant Referee 2: Robert Dabbs
Fourth Official: Andrew Laver
David Rock will officiate Newport County AFC for the very first time on Saturday when stepping out at The County Ground.
Promoted up to the Football League at the start of the campaign, Rock has taken charge of six matches thus far, brandishing 16 yellow cards and one red card, the last match of which saw Crawley Town and Plymouth Argyle share a 2-2 draw on September 17th.
Those statistics follow on from Rock’s final campaign in the National League during 2018/19. He awarded 62 yellow cards and two red cards from 26 matches across the entirety of the season.
Other League Two fixtures that day (All 3pm kick-offs)
Carlisle United vs Oldham Athletic
Cheltenham Town vs Crewe Alexandra
Crawley Town vs Walsall
Exeter City vs Grimsby Town
Leyton Orient vs Port Vale
Macclesfield Town vs Colchester United
Mansfield Town vs Plymouth Argyle
Morecambe vs Northampton Town
Salford City vs Forest Green Rovers
Scunthorpe United vs Bradford City
Stevenage vs Cambridge United
Can’t make the match?
You can follow along on social media using @NCAFCLive on Twitter, or via the Club’s official Facebook, Snapchat (OfficialExiles) and Instagram pages.
Don’t forget – if you reside outside of the UK, you can watch the game live by subscribing to County’s iFollow service. Commentary by Tim Thraves and Charlie Brown can also be found at the Match Centre from 2.45pm.
An on-the-whistle match report of this match will be provided on the club website upon the end of the game. Michael Flynn’s post-match analysis will appear on the website the day after the game, while you can watch all of Flynn’s post-match press conference as-well as two County players by subscribing to #iFollowExiles.