Rovers travel to Newport for the return fixture with the Exiles, less than a month after their meeting in Nailsworth on the 5th of Feb.  Rovers won the home encounter 2-0 with a brace from Matty Stevens, one goal in each half.  This match between the sides was originally due to take place on Boxing Day but was postponed for covid reasons.

Newport is one of Rovers’ closest away games – just 1 hour by road, about 47 miles away.  Coaches leave the Fully Charged New Lawn at 17.30, Sainsburys at 17.50 & Stonehouse at 18.00.  Book your coach seat by ringing KB Coaches on 01453 825774 between 8.30 and 5 Mondays to Fridays – remember that SC members get a discount.

Train travel is just about possible.  Trains leave Stroud every half an hour or so (via Gloucester or Swindon) and they take up to 90 minutes for the journey.  Beware, the last trains back are at 21.25 and 21.33 from Newport.  The ground is an 11 minute (0.5 mile) walk from the station.  Cost of an adult return is about £35.

The postcode if you are driving is NP19 0UU.  There are car-parks as you approach the town centre but there is a pretty good amount of street parking near the ground.

You can check out Newport’s away fans guide at newport-county.co.uk/club/fans/away-fans/

 

Rodney Parade

Newport share the stadium with Newport RFC and Newport Gwent Dragons. It’s the second oldest football stadium in the country, behind Preston’s Deepdale.

Away fans visiting Rodney Parade are located in the Bisley Stand, an all-seater covered single tier stand, with a typical allocation of just under 600.

Ticket prices are £22 adult, £18 concession, £16 (16 to 21), £10 (u-16), £8 (u-12).  Tickets can be bought on the gate (there is a ticket office which is near the away gate – Gate 6) but note that this is cash only.

Since losing 2-0 to FGR, the Exiles suffered a 1-0 away defeat at Northampton, followed by home draws against Oldham (3-3) and Mansfield (1-1).  This run has dropped them from the automatic promotion places down to 8th place.  However, last time out, the Exiles had an impressive 4-2 home win against high-flying Tranmere.  Newport are still in 8th place with 52 points from 33 games (14 points behind Rovers, having played 1 game more).  But, with just 4 points separating 2nd to 8th in the table, competition is pretty intense.

Again, the match will feature the 2 teams who have scored the most goals in League 2 this season (FGR have scored 62, Newport 54).  Newport probably feel that, defensively, they could be better, having conceded 44 times in their 33 games. 

Newport’s record from 33 games is 14 wins, 10 draws, 9 losses.  After a slightly slow start to the season, Newport are still very much in the mix for play-offs or automatic promotion.  Newport may be nervous about play-offs – they dramatically defeated FGR last season, of course, but then lost to Morecambe in the play-off final.

Newport’s star performer this season has been their striker Dom Telford.  Telford is the league’s top scorer with 24 league goals in just 24 appearances.  Telford’s scoring streak has come as something of a revelation at Newport.  His previous spells at Blackpool, Stoke, Bristol Rovers, Bury & Plymouth over a period of 7 seasons saw him score only 13 times in total.  He made 10 appearances for Newport last season, scoring just once.  Now, it seems, he just can’t stop scoring!

Telford had a quiet game in Nailsworth (limited to just 1 serious attempt on goal) but will doubtless need to be watched carefully at Rodney Parade.

Free-scoring Dom Telford (number 19) loves counter-attacking, has pace, and enjoys shooting from distance.

Dom Telford may have been Newport’s star performer so far, but he has been backed up in attack by Courtney Baker-Richardson who has netted 8 times this season.  Both Telford (number 19) and Baker-Richardson (number 10) are big threats when shooting from distance.  Telford is a counter-attacker with pace, Baker-Richardson is strong in the air.  They are clearly Newport’s 2 biggest threats.

Mickey Demitriou (number 28) has been the Exiles top defensive player.  A central defender, Demitriou is strong in the air and will, doubtless, keep a careful eye on Jamille.  His tackling and his distribution are also very highly rated.

Courtney Baker-Richardson (number 10) gives Newport aerial attacking threat and great shooting from distance.

Mickey Demitriou (number 28) has been Newport’s defensive anchor.

PLAYMAKERS: County loanees Ollie Cooper and Finn Azaz

Ollie Cooper (number 31) and Finn Azaz (number 18) have really caught the eye since arriving at Rodney Parade.  Azaz is on loan from Aston Villa, Cooper is also on loan, this time from Swansea.  Both are young and energetic attacking midfielders who are given licence to go forward while Robbie Wilmott (number 7) sits behind them in a holding role.  Between them the pair have 4 goals and numerous assists.

Lewis Collins (younger brother of Aaron) is still part of the Newport squad.  Now 20, Lewis has only figured a handful of times for the Exiles this season.

Newport have become known for FA Cup runs in recent years (beating Leicester, Middlesborough and Leeds and also troubling – but eventually losing to – Tottenham and Manchester City).  Last season the Exiles won their 1st and 2nd round ties against Leyton Orient and Salford before succumbing in the 3rd round against Brighton and Hove Albion on penalties after a 1-1 draw.  This season saw them exit 1-0 away to Morecambe in the 1st round.

Newport are one of only 3 EFL clubs that are majority owned by their fans (Exeter City and AFC Wimbledon are the others).  Newport had spent most of their time in the 3rd tier since they joined in 1921.  But they were relegated from the 3rd tier in 1987 and then finished bottom of the 4th tier in 1988 which meant they were relegated to the Conference, ending their 60-year stay in the EFL.  The following year they went out of business and were expelled from the Conference for failing to fulfill their fixtures.

A group of supporters then reformed the club and they were admitted into the Hellenic League (4 divisions below the EFL).  It was at this time that they became known as The Exiles as they were unable to play at their Newport home and had to play their fixtures in Moreton in the Marsh, Gloucestershire during the 1989/90 season.  Since then Newport have been on a steady upward trajectory and, though it was a long haul, they finally made their way back into the EFL at the start of the 2013/14 season.  The club crest reflects the fact that they were formed in 1912 and re-born in 1989.

 

Newport County fans are known as the ‘Amber Army’ and, if you wondered where the ‘County’ came from, they were originally known as The Newport & Monmouth County Association Football Club, which got shortened.

Spytty the dog is Newport’s mascot.  The Newport Stadium is also known as Spytty Park.