Newport County midfielder Nathan Wood is keen to maintain the momentum Newport have built over recent games and take it into this weekend’s encounter with MK Dons.
Wood signed for the Exiles from Penybont in the summer and has had an ‘enjoyable yet challenging’ start to his professional footballing career. Transitioning from semi-professional football to professional, would take a toll on anyone making the sizable leap, as Coughlan recently confirmed. Despite the step-up it hasn’t deterred Wood as he continues to transition to life in the football league: “I knew coming into this move that it was going to take me a couple of months for my body to get used to training every day.
“I feel like only now is my body starting to adjust to the work I’m putting in, rather than managing constant knocks and bumps.
“Those knocks are fewer now and I’m feeling stronger and stronger every day and I feel like I’m ready to take my chances when they present themselves.”
Wood featured in Newport’s recent 2-0 win over Oldham athletic in the FA Cup first round and was part of the squad that beat Gillingham with the same scoreline and is determined that the Exiles should carry that momentum into the MK Dons clash this coming Saturday: “For us, going into those games it was about going into it with a positive mindset and being confident with what we’ve got,” he began.
“We had to stick together and believe we are good enough to do it (win), as we showed earlier in the season,” he continued.
Going into the game with MK Dons, the visitors will likely be the favourites, but Wood is sure that with the traits that he’d previously mentioned that Newport can take a positive result from the game: “We know on paper we can probably make excuses, but that’s not us as a group,” he confirmed.
“We pull together, we work hard, and we’ll take the positives from these two wins and clean sheets into Saturday (MK Dons).”
Wood also took the opportunity to highlight the benefit that the supporters play, spurring the team on from the terraces: “The fans have been incredible,” Wood explained.
“They’re loud, they’re there week in, week out, home and away. You can never underestimate the importance that support plays when you’re on the pitch.
“We (the players) talk about the support amongst ourselves and although it sound’s cliché they are the 12th member of that team and often help us over the line.”
Of course, Wood hasn’t always experienced the support from pitch side, he’s also been stood on the terraces as a supporter of the club: “When I was in the academy, all the lads used to come together to watch the first team in action. Previous to that I used to go with my father and grandfather to Spytty Park and more recently to Rodney Parade.
“So, I think just being somewhere that you used to want to be around as a kid makes experiencing it from the pitch even more special and I’ll never get bored of that feeling.”
Nathan will be looking to experience some more of that Amber Army support tomorrow, as the Exiles host MK Dons at Rodney Parade. Tickets are still available and can be purchased here.