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Match Report Newport vs Verwood Town 23-Mar-19


Both teams suffered lots of changes through absentees and injuries so normal starting positions were very much changed.

Newport’s left flank was first to test our defence with a high lob into the penalty area. A runner tried to lob Tierney but an athletic backward flip put the ball on the roof of the net. An inswinging corner dropped in the 6 yard box and Kelly won the heading duel clearing our area. Heggan collected and swept the ball wide left. Davies tried an angled shot but a defender deflected the ball for a corner. A half clearance fell on the edge of the box. In came Hall to slam the ball on to the cross bar and watch it bounce out of danger.

6 minutes gone and Newport broke on the right, a deep cross and Kelly yet again was the dominant figure clearing with a strong header. Back it came and this time Dyer’s left peg was an undisputed winner.

Crotty’s work rate helped to close down defenders and we gradually got on top. Eaton’s inspirational running helped push Newport back. Cowland took the opportunity to overlap on our left and linking with Davies split the Newport defence open with a slide rule pass. A shot from Hall flew over the bar.

Eaton skinned his marker half way through the half and Heggan’s intelligent running collected Eaton’s through ball. A swift pass wide and Nicholson blasted a shot taking varnish off the post.

It was an end to end tussle. Gajic and Kelly proved an effective central pairing and with the experienced Dyer on the right and an in form Cowland on the left we looked a solid unit at the back. Tierney’s presence gave added confidence to the defence.

Hall and Heggan were tested against equally hard working midfielder’s but sported an edge. Heggan’s chip on 32 minutes freed up Davies on the left, a low drive was beaten out by the keeper. Davies made no mistake with his follow up slamming the ball into the bottom corner putting us ahead, 0-1.

2 minutes later Eaton used good feet to again free up Davies. This time it wasn’t necessary to have a second chance. A volley across the keeper made it 2-0.

Verwood’s A&E department was even more stretched when Nicholson signaled a groin problem and had to come off. Adam Holmes made a bow.

Half time 2-0.

We looked the better side at the opening of play with Crotty shooting over the bar and then Eaton shooting into the side netting.

Newport countered. Gajic rose high to clear the area. Back it came and it took a very alert Tierney to stop it crossing the line.

Newport’s full back seemed badly injured on 52 minutes and had to come off. Newport’s bench didn’t substitute so for a period we faced 10 men.

Next week Newport might consider playing with ten only !! An upsurge in energy levels had us back pedaling to preserve our lead. Skirmishes became the norm.

Jon Brewer was on quickly to help Tierney recover from a strong body challenge. Luckily Tierney was able to continue.

We lapsed concentration briefly with 62 gone and suffered. Good football took Newport through the middle and an excellent pass gave a runner space to score. 2-1

Micky Cowland came off on 72 minutes with a muscle strain and Cameron Lewis substituted on a one for one.

Lewis’ baptism came a couple of minutes later stopping a cross from the Newport right flank.

The game now was on a razor edge. Newport had more of the ball and we looked vulnerable. Gajic and Kelly were on overtime while Lewis and Dyer tried hard to block flank progress.

We survived. 82 minutes and a Hall through ball split Newport’s defence. Crotty latched on to the pass and cutting into the area slid the ball past an advancing keeper 3-1.

It looked as if we were home and dry but Newport rallied and pushed us back.

Eaton came off for Dartson to make his debut with 5 minutes left and fresh legs were heavily employed in the closing minutes.

90+3 and a break down Newport’s right gave space in the box. 3-2. It was a rousing finish but we closed ranks and came away with the three points.

Result 3-2.