Newport City 1 – 2 Chepstow Town

Newport City suffered a damaging defeat against bogey side Chepstow Town, as the Steelmen ended their final home game of the season on a low note. The result leaves City’s fate out of their own hands, with their survival hopes hanging in the balance.

The Steelmen started the game brightly; and came close to scoring on a couple of occasions. Rhyse Hudson almost fired the hosts ahead early on, but saw his low strike from edge of area deflected into side netting. From the following corner, a loose ball was connected by Martyn Mickiewicz who thumped his 15 yard shot well over the bar.

City were however punished for the missed opportunities, as they fell behind in the 14th minute following a calamitous defensive mix up. Oliver Melling was allowed to run clear into the area before seeing his strike blocked by Marcel Nzarora; the rebound was however tucked in from six yards out by Omotayo Omolokun.

The Steelmen were handed a golden opportunity to level just five minutes later, when the referee awarded a penalty following a handball by Joshua Parsons inside the area. The resulting spot kick was however frustratingly missed by Dean Clifford, who dragged his effort wide of the left post.

Clifford soon almost atoned for his error by squaring a nice pass across the face of goal, but Ethan Wynne agonisingly failed to connect with the ball from 2 yards out. James Hill also broke through on goal inside area, but saw his goal bound strike well blocked Chepstow defender Ben Thompson.

HT: 0-1

The Steelmen restarted the game strongly and almost equalised when Clifford curled an effort into the side netting, while Kareem Leigh struck narrowly over the bar. City were however once again made to pay for the missed chances, as Chepstow doubled their lead in the 52nd minute. The goal came following an upfield delivery into the area, where Melling nicely controlled the ball before converting a well placed finish into the bottom left corner.

Rocked by the setback, the Steelmen almost fell further behind as the visitors looked to kill the game off. City had Nzarora to thank for keeping them in the game after producing three fine saves from Omolokun, Tom Pearson and Joseph Ward, while also tipping the ball on to the bar from a corner. Melling also saw his backheeled effort drift inches wide of the left post, as Chepstow continued to tighten the screw.

City eventually managed to weather the storm; and were rewarded when they halved the deficit in the 76th minute. The goal came when a cross into the area by Gareth Hole was connected by Leigh, allowing the latter to plant a neat header into the bottom right corner.

Boosted by the goal, the Steelmen maintained a good spell of pressure as they attempted to level the game. They came extremely close to an equaliser when an acrobatic volley by Hudson smacked the inside of the post, before the ball agonisingly drifted away from goal. Clifford also very nearly levelled the score, as the striker saw his goal bound free kick effort punched away by Chepstow keeper Matthew Swann.

The Steelmen continued to pressurise and threw the kitchen sink during the closing stages, as they desperately tried to rescue a point. Despite their relentless efforts, City ultimately found no joy as they were forced to suffer a significantly costly defeat.

FT 1-2

Newport City Line-Up:

Nzarora, Francombe, Hole, Cashman, Mickiewicz (Sub: Jenkins), Westhead, Wynne, Hudson, Clifford, Hill, Kaplan (Sub: Leigh)

Subs not used – Taylor, Price, Brunsden

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