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Graham Coughlan | "We just weren't at it tonight..."

13 February 2024

Club News

Graham Coughlan | "We just weren't at it tonight..."

13 February 2024

Manager Graham Coughlan admitted his side were well below par after falling to a 3-1 defeat against Notts County on Tuesday evening.

A brace from Macaulay Langstaff and a goal from David McGoldrick ended Newport County’s seven-game unbeaten run despite a late consolation goal from Will Evans. 

“We got beat and probably deservingly so,” said Coughlan post-match.

“Notts County were much the better team and elementary mistakes cost us. Unfortunately, when you win you take the plaudits but when you lose you take the stick.

"We just weren’t at it tonight and too many of our players just weren’t at it. We were sloppy and despite getting into some good positions in the first half, we weren’t clinical enough and weren’t able to pick out a final ball.

“At the end of the day, I’ll take the flack. I could have changed personnel, I could have changed shape but I was stubborn and stuck to our principles. I stuck with the players, I stuck with the shape and I stuck with a group of players who are in great form.

“If anyone wants to have a go at the players please point the finger at me. I was at fault tonight and not the players. I should have changed one or two things around such as the system but I didn’t. I thought the players deserved their opportunity after the good form. 

“Notts County are a top-quality side and we knew they would have large spells of the ball. When we had the ball we had to keep it and we had to move the ball quickly, but we didn’t. The basic errors we made cost us and cost us goals. It’s not like us and that wasn’t a true reflection of us. 

“We won’t know until Saturday how we will react from tonight. We have to put tonight behind us and move on. I’ve challenged the lads in the dressing room to put it out of our system, have our arguments, have our fights, close the door and that’s it. We sweep it under the carpet now and move on to Saturday. 

He finished: “We’ve got some really tough games coming up. It’s a tough period of fixtures coming up but it’s also a great test for the lads. It will be a great gauge of where we are and where we want to be. It will be a very brave period for us. 

“Make no mistake we’ve only lost three home games in the league here this season. People may get carried away because we’ve won so many games of late but it’s a long, long way to go and let’s see what happens.

“Our systems have been going well over the last seven, eight games and the players deserved their places tonight. I’m to blame and on my head be it.” 


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