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MATCH REPORT: Rochdale 3-0 Newport County

18 December 2021

Newport were beaten 3-0 by Rochdale at Spotland.

Jake Beesley scored a brace before Liam Kelly finished matters off in the final minute.

Rochdale got off to a fast start and took the lead on two minutes when Beesley struck into the bottom left corner from just inside the box after being teed up by Conor Grant.

Beesley scored again in the fifth minute with a slide, but that attempt was ruled offside.

Corey O'Keeffe headed a corner wide in the 13th minute before Eoghan O'Connell hit a half-volley from a long way well wide of Joe Day's right-hand post.

Day made his first save of the game 19 minutes into the game and he did well to grab Alex Newby's effort from 25 yards.

Finn Azaz had County's first shot on goal, but he could only shoot straight at Joel Coleman after an impressive solo run got him to just inside the area for the strike.

Rochdale went straight down the other end and Grant went down in the box, only for no penalty to be given.

Day then made a fine save to beat away a strike from Newby while O'Connell hit a free-kick over the bar and out of the stadium for the hosts.

The half ended with Aaron Lewis striking narrowly wide of the left-hand post from a long way out as County tried to get themselves level. 

Newport pushed for the leveller in the second half without success as Rochdale held firm to keep the game at 1-0 and, in the final 20 minutes, it was 2-0.

Mickey Demetriou brought down O'Keeffe in the box after O'Keeffe seemed to foul Demetriou shortly before and Beesley blasted in for the spot-kick to double the hosts' lead in the 72nd minute.

In the 77th minute, County almost got themselves back in the game but Courtney Baker-Richardson was brilliantly denied by Coleman in the box. 

Rochdale almost made it 3-0 four minutes from time as County surged bodies forward but Newby missed an open goal from inside the box after he seized onto a rebound with Day saving an Aidy White shot into the path of Newby.

They did get their third goal in the 89th minute though when Liam Kelly slotted home from close range from Beesley's squared ball across the box in a Rochdale counter-attack.

Rochdale: Joel Coleman, Corey O'Keeffe, Aidy White (Jim McNulty '90), Max Taylor, Eoghan O'Connell (C), Stephen Dooley (Aaron Morley '80), Jake Beesley, Alex Newby, Conor Grant (George Broadbent '80), Jeriel Dorsett, Liam Kelly

Subs not used: Jay Lynch, Matty Done, Abraham Odoh, Josh Andrews

Newport CountyJoe Day, Cameron Norman, James Clarke, Matty Dolan (C) (Jake Cain '60), Mickey Demetriou, Aaron Lewis (Timmy Abraham '75), Robbie Willmott, Finn Azaz, Oliver Cooper, Dom Telford, Courtney Baker-Richardson

Subs not used: Nick Townsend, Ryan Haynes, Ed Upson, Joe Woodiwiss, Sonny Lewis


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