Tonight, we look to secure our place in the knock-out stages of the Bristol Street Motors Trophy when we welcome Bristol Rovers to Rodney Parade.
Having both lost to West Ham U21 in our last game, Tuesday’s game is a straight shoot-out, with the winners securing second place in the group and progression into the next round.
Graham Coughlan has a tough injury list to contend with ahead of the match, with Saturday’s bench having space for Academy stars Nelson Sanca and Alfie Young. We may see some further call-ups for the game, while Nathan Wood will look to keep his place after an impressive display on Saturday.
Jonny Maxted was also on the bench for Saturday’s game after returning from illness and will be eager to push for a start in the competition after playing well in our first group match away at Cheltenham.
Bristol Rovers arrive at Rodney Parade unbeaten in five games in all competitions. Since parting ways with manager Joey Barton, the club has won three of its last four games and sits tenth in League One, a position Gasheads would be happy with at the end of the campaign.
Rovers secured a 1-0 win away at Carlisle United this past weekend in what was a scrappy encounter. The hosts had the majority of shots, but Rovers took the lead in the 38th minute thanks to a Samuel Lavelle own-goal. Bristol finished the game with ten men when Tristan Crama was sent off in the 73rd minute but held on for the three points.
During their last Bristol Street Motors Trophy game, Joey Barton made nine changes to his team’s line-up. Andy Mangan is also likely to make several changes to the team that played against Carlisle this weekend, with the likes of Scott Sinclair, Jevani Brown, and John Marquis all vying for a starting place.
You can find ticket information for the Bristol Rovers game here:
Adult - £10
Senior 60+ - £8
Under 18 - £5
Under 6 - £0
Please note: Only the Bisley stand will be open for this fixture.
Last Time Out
Our last encounter with Bristol Rovers was in March last year, with a first Newport goal from James Waite being the difference marker. Coming into the game, we sat in the play-off spots, while Rovers sat in mid-table.
It was an entertaining encounter, with Rob Street and Finn Azaz both rattling the woodwork at Rodney Parade. Waite grabbed the winning goal in the 33rd minute. The midfielder danced around the Rovers’ defence on the edge of the box before firing past James Belshaw to grab his first goal for the club.
Head to Head
Our first encounter with Bristol Rovers dates back over 100 years when we lost 3-2 away from home in September 1920. Since then, we have played each other another 68 times. We have registered 27 wins, with Rovers winning 25 and 17 games ending in a draw.
Since returning to the Football League in 2013, we have been in great form against Rovers. In six league encounters, we have won four and lost two, with Bristol’s last win against us coming in 2016.
Played for Both
There have been many players that have made the short trip across the Prince of Wales Bridge to play for both Bristol Rovers and Newport County. A key player for Tuesday’s visitors who spent time at Rodney Parade is Aaran Collins. Collins spent a short period of time on loan here in 2018. He has been key to Rovers’ success in recent years, winning the Sky Bet League One Player of the Year award last season.
Other players to have played for both teams include the likes of goalkeeper Joe Day, currently on loan at Yeovil Town and Byron Anthony.
Of course, there will also be some attention on the dugout, as Graham Coughlan will manage Newport against his former side for the first time. The gaffer spent 12 months in charge at the Memorial Stadium, overseeing 56 games for Bristol Rovers.