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Newport County suffer a three-nil defeat to Accrington Stanley on the opening day

5 August 2023

Not an ideal start for the Exiles away at Accrington, but positives to take from the performance.

The game kicked-off at three o’clock sharp in the pouring rain in North Lancashire with both teams hoping for a dream start to the season.

The first chance came County’s way with Morris zipping the ball over the top to Wildig but the Accrington keeper, Savin claimed the ball to alleviate any immediate trouble.

The Exiles looked to pounce just 5 minutes in after a cross from Liverpool loanee, Adam Lewis was deflected behind for the first corner of the game.

Newport continued on the front foot with chances falling for both Palmer-Houlden and Lewis but neither being able to hit the target.

Accrington started to come into the game around 15 minutes in via Nolan after a loose pass from Jameson at the back was intercepted. Nolan let fly but Townsend’s fast reactions ensured the game remained nil-nil.

Accrington had the momentum after more chances fell to various players and eventually, they hit the back of the net in the 23rd minute through Jack Nolan.

Stanley continued with the run of play almost doubling their lead instantly through Andrews, but Morris made a crucial block to deny the goal scoring opportunity.

The rain was pouring down, the challenges were flying in and so were the cards, two Accrington players were given yellow cards in the space of two minutes In separate challenges on both Palmer-Houlden and Delaney.

It was the first time the new EFL additional time rule came into play today and this was seen when the fourth official showed eight minutes of additional time to the shock of some fans.

Half Time

It was clear that Newport weren’t going to sit back in the second half, you could see that from the first minute, after a surging run from Lewis and a shot from distance that curled just wide of the target.

On the other hand, Accrington Stanley aimed to double their lead and nearly did so, if it wasn’t for Newport’s number one, Nick Townsend who was fully outstretched to deny Stanley their second.

Graham made his first change in the 57th minute bringing on Newcastle United loanee Matty Bondswell for Shane McLoughlin hoping to add some pace to that left side of the field.

Chances were coming thick and fast for Newport, but each chance either went wide or over the bar, much to the Exiles dismay.

John Coleman made three changes at the 66th minute mark hoping to freshen up legs, and it turns out it did. Less than 10 minutes later, substitute Shaun Whalley made a diving header at the back post and doubled Accrington’s lead.

Despite the additions of Waite and Charsley the chances for Accrington kept on coming and they eventually added their third, through other substitute Adedoyin in the 93rd minute.

Newport had one last attempt via Evans, as his bullet header scraped the outside of the post and went wide.

Full Time

Starting XI: Townsend, Clarke, Delaney ©, Jameson, McLoughlin, Lewis, Bennett, Morris, Wildig, Evans, Palmer-Houlden. Subs: Maxted, Waite, Seberry, Bowen, Bright, Charsley, Bondswell.


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