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Match Reports

REPORT | Exiles fall to defeat against Oldham Athletic in five-goal thriller

23 January 2021

10-man Newport County AFC were condemned to a 3-2 victory in a dramatic clash against Oldham Athletic at Boundary Park.

Jake Scrimshaw gave County a dream start when he nodded home Luke Gambin's cross before Davis Keillor-Dunn drew the hosts level six minutes later.

Exiles skipper Joss Labadie was then shown a straight following a coming together with Marcel Hilssner, whose side took advantage of the extra man after Bobby Grant tapped home from close range.

Gambin brought the Exiles back into the game on the stroke of half-time, and County kept the score at 2-2 until 16 minutes from the final whistle when Mickey Demetriou diverted the ball into his own net.

Dylan Bahamabolua squandered an opportunity to put the tie to bed eight minutes from the end as he blasted over from the penalty spot, but the Latics held out for the victory.

Michael Flynn made two changes from the Exiles’ 1-1 draw against Cheltenham Town on Tuesday evening. Debutant Gambin, who joined the Exiles on loan from Colchester United earlier in the week, and Ryan Taylor were brought into the starting line-up in place of Robbie Willmott and Padraig Amond respectively.

Flynn would have been licking his lips inside the opening three minutes when two of his January additions - Gambin and Scrimshaw - both combined to put County in front with their first effort of the afternoon. After a neat piece of build-up play from Labadie, the midfielder played the ball down the wing to Gambin, whose cross was nodded home by Scrimshaw.

Tom King then made a reflex save down the opposite end to keep the hosts at bay when he turned Bobby Grant's deflected effort behind for a corner, but the visitors could only hold their lead for six minutes. Dylan Bahamaboula's cross was punched away by King before Keillor-Dunn gathered at the second attempt and smashed the ball into the far corner with a low effort.

After a positive start from the visitors, things took a turn for the worse six minutes after the restart when Labadie was shown a straight red card by referee Christopher Sarginson following a coming together with Hilssner.

And the home side took advantage of their numerical advantage just before the half-hour mark. Conor McAleny, who netted against County in the reverse fixture, saw his initial effort denied by King, but Grant was on hand to sweep home the rebound with the goal gaping.

Oldham continued to apply the pressure and almost delivered another blow to County on the stroke of half-time when Bahamabolua got to the byline and delivered across goal to Ben Garrity. The defender brought the ball under control before firing an effort at goal, which King kept out at his near post.

County, meanwhile, were limited to chances on goal but managed to find an equaliser five minutes before the interval. King's long ball forward was touched down by Taylor into the path of Gambin, who ventured forward and rifled a low shot beyond Bilboe from 25 yards to put County level at the break.

The Latics had the opportunity to restore their advantage after the break as McAleny's stinging effort was parried by King, but Bahaboula and Keillor-Dunn got in each other's way and the chance went begging. Hilssner also went close with an ambitious effort from range which looked to trouble King, only to sail over the crossbar and onto the roof of the net.

But Harry Kewell's side finally had the ball in the back of the net for the third time when Nicky Adams' low ball was diverted past King by the unfortunate Demetriou, who looked to put the ball to safety.

Bahamboula then had the opportunity to put the game to bed with eight minutes left on the clock when King was penalised for bringing down McAleny in the penalty area. But the midfielder failed to take advantage of the spot kick and blazed the ball over the crossbar from 12 yards, although it didn't prove costly as Oldham held out for the victory.


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