Newport City’s recent three game unbeaten run came to an end following a disappointing 2-0 away loss at Tredegar Town; as the Steelmen continued to fight for survival in the Welsh League third division.
A cagey opening twenty minutes produced very little in the form of any serious opportunities, with City’s Rhys Wood coming closest following a half-hearted strike which deflected wide past the left hand post. The game eventually sparked to life in the 24th minute when Lee Bridgeman mis-controlled a loose ball on the edge of his area, allowing Tredegar’s Lewys Cruickshank to rob the ball and calmly struck a low close range finish into the back of the net.
Buoyed by the goal, Tredegar grew in confidence and came close to doubling their lead just three minutes later. A cross into the area by Craig Hewitt was met by Jack Cullinane who saw his powerful header cleared off the goal line by City stand-in skipper Sam Graves. The hosts continued to seize the initiative and had two further opportunities soon after through Cruickshank and James Price, who both sent threatening efforts narrowly wide over the bar. Tredegar came even closer to doubling their lead shortly before the interval when a mis-kicked clearance inside the area by Joshua Beddis looped over City keeper Tom Pass and hitting the crossbar on the way.
City restarted the game strongly and almost scored through Josh Corlett who sent a low shot from the edge of the area narrowly wide past the right hand post; while Martyn Mickiewicz saw his close range strike grasped by Tredegar keeper Ian Pettit. The Steelmen then had Pass to thank for keeping them in the game as he produced a superb one handed close range save from Nathan Pettit; while he also denied Pettit again by tipping the latter’s header on to the crossbar.
Tredegar continued to dominate and came close again when Owen Thomas sent a strike from the edge of the area narrowly wide over the bar; while Thomas Lynch was denied an almost certain goal after a last ditch challenge inside the area by City substitute Aden Howard. The hosts were finally rewarded for their pressure in the 80th minute when Danny Hillman sent a defence splitting pass into the area, allowing Thomas to smash in a low finish into the bottom right hand corner of the net and double Tredegar’s lead.
The hosts almost added a third goal three minutes later when Price saw his header cleared off the goal line by Bridgeman, while Price was instantly denied again when his rebounded effort was smacked away from the goal line by Jordan Francombe. City did almost register a consolation goal when Mickiewicz saw his 15 yard effort well held by Ian Pettit, while Howard saw his curling effort drift inches wide. Ultimately it was a night to forget for City as Tredegar comfortably secured their victory, leaving City to endure a frustrating result.
Overall it was a deflating evening for Newport City as they failed to build on their encouraging unbeaten run prior to the defeat at Tredegar. The side will need to learn from their setback and bounce back quickly as they attempt to secure their place in next season’s Welsh League Third Division.
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