County face tough night as exciting year ends


Despite ending 2020 as league leaders, Newport County face tough opponents in the shape of Exeter City in an attractive looking League 2 encounter at Rodney Parade tonight.

Both sides remain firmly in the mix for promotion as the Christmas fixtures continue, though both have also slipped up a little of late.

The Grecians have dropped to seventh in the table after a recent run of just one win in their last five games, whilst Newport are winless in their last four.

The tie is something of a local derby for City ahead of their forthcoming trek to Barrow. They would be satisfied with the same 1-1 score line from their Boxing Day clash with Forest Green Rovers on this outing to South Wales.

Former County star Aaron Collins gave FGR the lead in that game before Archie Collins drew the score level with a spectacular effort from just outside the box.

County’s recent form has been something of a disaster. Their Boxing Day clash with Crawley Town saw them take an early lead through Ryan Haynes but the league leaders failed to keep the lead, despite the dismissal of Tarryn Allarakhia for the home side.

Haynes had been a thorn in the Crawley side throughout the game with Shephard also contributing a battling performance. An own goal conceded by Mickey Demetriou made it an unhappy afternoon though for the men from Gwent.

County’s last home fixture had brought an even worse outcome though, as County conceded two late goals to visitors Oldham Athletic to throw away all the points after leading at the interval.

Both sides will therefore be looking to recapture their earlier form in this 7pm kick off. We may see changes in the team line ups as both sides battle with the congested holiday fixture programme.

Looking further ahead, we could see County dip into the loan market to supplement their promotion push and FA Cup exploits. Expect manager Mike Flynn to take a glance at a number of promising youngsters currently knocking on Bluebirds boss Neil Harris’ door at the Cardiff City Stadium.


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