After a tough opening match against league newcomers Ynyshir Albions where City struggled to get going and only managed a 1-1 draw, the team were determined to up their game this week for the visit of local rivals Albion Rovers.
City were out of the blocks quickly, employing a quick passing game and there were only 2 minutes on the clock when the opening goal came. Some great work from Taylor St Claire and Beddis in the middle of the park resulted in a through ball that found Josh Corlett just inside the box. Corlett took a touch and calmly slotted into the bottom left corner.
Corlett doubled the lead on 25 minutes when he found himself on the left side of the area with plenty of bodies between him and the goal. Even so, he managed to pick his shot across goal into the bottom right corner. There were some suggestions of a glancing deflection off Martyn Mickiewicz but Corlett got the nod for the great shot.
After pushing for 30 minutes City lost concentration at a defensive corner on 42 minutes, a great delivery from the right found Albion Centre Half Warren Archer on the edge of the 6 yard box, and nothing was going to stop his shot from there.
HT Newport City 2 – 1 Albion Rovers
Not wanting to lose momentum after conceding, City returned to their passing game, pushed up the field and effectively killed the game with 3 goals in 7 minutes. On 55 minutes new signing Dean Clifford got his 2nd goal of the season. A great pass from new signing Matthew Hibbs found Clifford’s feet 30 yards out, Clifford burst forward and shot from the edge of the area across goal and into the bottom left corner.
Three minutes later, a Josh Corlett shot was saved by Rovers keeper Ian Vaughan, but he could only parry the shot into the path of Joe Ward who had made a run to the left of goal. Ward’s shot was too much for Vaughan to hold and City were 4-1 ahead.
Just 2 minutes later the game was over when Corlett some great passing from the left saw Ward, Hibbs and Corlett involved before the ball fell to Josh Beddis on the right. Beddis smashed the ball across the keeper and into the bottom left corner. Clifford should have got his 2nd after 80 minutes when a neat flick from Corlett saw Clifford shoot into the top corner only to see his effort ruled out for offside.
With 7 minutes to go and the game over as a contest, Manager Sam Houldsworth opted to bring on 16 year old Jack Whiting for his Welsh League debut. Jack is part of City’s Youth team this season but has been involved in 1st team friendlies in pre-season and his performances earned him a place on the bench. Then in the 93rd minute, Whiting popped up on the right of goal to receive a pass from Matthew Flynn and smash the ball home for a goal in his first Welsh League game. There’s certainly more to come from this player and others in the new Youth setup at City.
FT Newport City 6 – 1 Albion Rovers
Overall it was a solid performance from City, and were it not for the effort of Vaughan in the Albion goal, the score could have been higher. Some great saves from Vaughan, City hitting the post and goals ruled offside for Clifford and Corlett kept the score down. It will be a different game altogether for City away at Trethomas Bluebirds on Tuesday night. We go again.