Graham Coughlan | “What a game of football we witnessed tonight…”

Manager Graham Coughlan described Newport County’s eight-goal thriller as a “brilliant advert for League Two football" after his side edged a 5-3 win over Morecambe.

The Exiles, searching for a first win in three games, led through Adam Lewis and an Aaron Wildig brace early on before Gwion Edwards responded for the Shrimps. 

But after second-half strikes from Edwards and Chris Stokes, both Harry Charsley and Seb Palmer-Houlden netted to earn County a big victory in League Two. 

“Wow. Just what a game,” reflected Coughlan. 

“I don’t know where to start. I thought it was a brilliant advert for League Two football. I thought it was a brilliant advert for both clubs and it goes to show how far both clubs have come over the last few seasons.

“That was Morecambe pushing and throwing everything at us because they have play-off aspirations. But let’s have it right, we could have scored eight, nine or even ten goals tonight. 

“We were wasteful with some of our chances and that’s probably why it was nervy in the end in there until we had the Harry Charsley and Seb Palmer Houlden goals.

“It just so happens that we put some crosses into the box and we got on the end of them. It’s not something we’ve particularly worked on so I wouldn’t read too much into it being a masterstroke or bit of coaching, it was just sheer quality from Adam Lewis. There were some great finishing and some great timings of runs into the box. 

“We have scored goals similar to them already this season. It was almost reminiscent of the Manchester United game so it is part of our game. There was some real quality on show tonight. The patterns of play to get us out wide and beyond their front four were brilliant. We got beyond their system a number of times but fair play to them because they never gave up and got themselves back into the game." 

He finished: “We are a team who wants to play on the front foot, play with a high intensity and score goals. I thought we played really well in stages tonight and I think even in parts, we played some of the best stuff we’ve played all season. Best goals, best finishing and best timing of runs. But then we didn’t look like ourselves in stages which I think just added to the entertainment. 

“We’ve got 52 points now and that is a remarkable achievement but this group of lads want more. I will want more and I’m sure the fans will too. 

“We have to keep the fans on the edge of their seats and I think that is in our DNA, but what a game of football we witnessed tonight. 

“If that was in the Premier League I’m sure people would be all over it. That was one hell of a game. We’ve had many entertaining games this season but that is right up there."