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Match Reports

REPORT | Exiles' winning run comes to an end at Port Vale

16 March 2021

Match Reports

REPORT | Exiles' winning run comes to an end at Port Vale

16 March 2021

Newport County AFC’s winning run came to an end at Vale Park as they went down 2-1 to Port Vale.

Devonte Rodney fired in the winner 15 minutes from time to condemn the Exiles to a first defeat in four games.

Jake Scrimshaw came off the bench at half time to cancel out Tom Conlon’s early opener but it proved to be a mere consolation.

An unchanged side took to the field in Stoke-on-Trent but they lacked the same energy and positivity that was on display in the weekend victory over Morecambe as the hosts dominated the first half.

The Valiants had pieced together a number of flowing passing moves in the early exchanges but the Exiles didn’t heed those warnings and the hosts went ahead on 12 minutes.

A great dummy from David Worrall saw him trick his way past Mickey Demetriou and his cut back laid it on a plate for Conlon to tuck into the bottom corner.

The Vale skipper was agonisingly close to a quick-fire second but a strong hand from Nick Townsend diverted his whipped free kick onto the crossbar.

A rejig midway through the first half saw County get more of a foothold in the game with Matty Dolan stepping into midfield and a searching cross from Padraig Amond found Joss Labadie in space in the box but there was nobody in the right place to make use of his return ball across goal.

That attack aside County struggled to test the Vale backline and numerous errors all over the pitch continued to fuel the hosts’ momentum. Josh Sheehan was almost punished when Worrall stole the ball from him high up the pitch but the visitors got back well and eventually snuffed out the danger.

Flynn’s response to the first half was a double substitution at the break. Scrimshaw and Luke Gambin, on his birthday, replaced Scot Bennett and Amond and within minutes County almost equalised in sensational fashion.

Gambin’s shot on the edge of the area was blocked but fell kindly for Ryan Taylor and the striker unleashed a ferocious volley that cannoned off the crossbar.

Gambin seemed to add a spark of creativity that was missing in the first 45 minutes and a neat flick from the Malta international knocked Demetriou’s ball into the path of Scrimshaw who beat Scott Brown to the ball and slotted home an equaliser 10 minutes into the second half.

Despite an improved performance in the final third, the Exiles still needed to be switched on at the back with Priestley Farquharson and Townsend providing timely interventions to deny the Valiants good goal-scoring opportunities.

Farquharson put his body on the line again when Nathan Smith tried to knock in Worrall’s low cross from close range but the defender’s clearance fell to the feet of Rodney, who knocked the ball into the net.

Flynn threw on Dom Telford and Kevin Ellison for the final quarter of an hour to try and salvage something from the game but Vale managed to keep County at bay.


Newport County AFC: Nick Townsend; Priestley Farquharson, Matty Dolan (Dom Telford 78), Mickey Demetriou; Liam Shephard, Joss Labadie (C), Scot Bennett (Luke Gambin 46), Josh Sheehan, Aaron Lewis; Padraig Amond (Jake Scrimshaw 46), Ryan Taylor (Kevin Ellison 78).

Subs not used: Tom King, David Longe-King, Anthony Hartigan.

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