Bristol Rovers vs Newport County

Preview

The Gas welcome the visit of Newport County to The Mem this afternoon. As this is a local fixture for both teams, I would expect a large away following from Newport County.

For The Gas, this is the third mid-table clash in a row, with Rovers drawing the previous two games against mid-table opposition, albeit both away games. Both teams approach the game following a series of draws, so a draw would not be a surprise.

Newport County are four places above Rovers in thirteenth position, but only two points separate the two teams. A win this afternoon for The Gas would see them leapfrog the visitors in the table.

If we are to be considered promotion candidates this season, then this is another game that we need to be winning. A win would catapult us up the densely-packed table, a defeat would result in us looking over our shoulder at the teams below us again.

Here’s hoping for a Gas victory!

Match Report

The Gas fall to another home defeat against a lively looking Newport County team. County scored twice in the first half before Brett Pitman pulled a goal back in first half injury time with an excellent finish from fifteen yards out.

Newport County had the better of the first half, and the feeling at half time was that we were lucky to be only one goal behind at half time. With Pitman’s goal, the game has changed from being a lost cause to game on!

Once again Belshaw made a number of excellent saves to keep us in the game, as well as a superb headed clearance off the line by Taylor. Both players had an excellent game.

At times we showed some flashes of skill, Anthony Evans, Aaron Collins and Luke Thomas all looking lively and producing an attacking threat.

One comment that I have is that it is difficult to see the game plan we are trying to achieve. We have a quality goal poacher in Brett Pitman, who is now regularly finding the net. The trouble is that we play so deep that we do not appear to be playing to Pitman’s strengths. He is not going to chase long through balls, his specialty is being deadly in the box. His goal today was a prime example of that. We don’t seem to be set up to take advantage of this though, and I can’t believe that Newport County were so good that they pinned us back.

Newport County effectively kill the game off just after the hour mark with a perfectly executed counter attack, completely against the run of play. There was a feeling in the South West stand that the goalscorer was offside, but I was not 100% on this.

We huffed and puffed and failed to score the goal that would have made the end of the game interesting, so our visitors make the short trip back to South Wales happy and with a deserved three points.

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