The 2012/13 season is one that rightfully lives long in the memory of Newport fans. Our iconic 2-0 win over Wrexham at Wembley secured our return to the Football League after a 25-year exodus.
However, we would not have played under the Wembley arch had it not been for our fantastic back-to-back performances against Grimsby in the semi-finals, and it is the second of these games, the home leg, that we are focusing on for this week’s From the Archive.
The final league game of the 2012/13 season had seen us suffer a 3-0 defeat to Grimsby. However, just four days later, we returned to Cleetorphes in style, grabbing a 1-0 win thanks to a last-minute goal from Ismail Yakubu.
Over 6,600 fans packed the stands for the second leg at Rodney Parade, and they were not disappointed.
Paul Hurst’s Grimsby had the first real chance of the game, with Craig Disley forcing a fine save out of Lenny Pidgley in the Newport goal. We then responded through David Pipe, with the defender heading just over the bar in a lively but tense opening half-hour.
The deadlock was broken in the 31st minute, though. Christian Jolley fired a low shot past Jamie McKeown in the Grimsby goal to put us 1-0 up and produce a roar in Rodney Parade that could be heard across Wales.
Grimsby looked to respond in the second half, bringing top-scorer Andy Cook off the bench, but Newport were relentless. We nearly doubled our lead through Flynn, who hit the ball wide from close range to finish the tie-off.
The Mariners were unable to muster a comeback, though, and the full-time whistle sparked wild scenes in the stands at Rodney Parade, booking our position in the National League play-off final and ensuring that one Welsh team would be in League Two the following season.
Spoiler: it wasn’t Wrexham.
You can secure your tickets for this weekend's tie with Grimsby by clicking HERE.