Coughlan bemoans missed chances after Northampton peg back Newport
Newport boss Graham Coughlan was left to rue his team’s missed chances in a dominant first-half performance as they were denied a precious victory by a last-gasp Sam Hoskins equaliser at promotion-chasing Northampton.
Omar Bogle’s second-minute strike fired the Exiles into the lead at Sixfields, and it was a narrow advantage they held until the second minute of stoppage time at the end of the game when goal machine Hoskins popped up to earn his side a 1-1 draw.
But the Cobblers were also indebted to goalkeeper and man-of-the-match Lee Burge, who pulled off a string of top-class saves in the opening 45 minutes to keep his side in the contest.
Burge twice saved superbly from Bogle, and also denied Mickey Demetriou and Nathan Moriah-Welsh with brilliant saves, and Coughlan admitted he should have been returning to south Wales with all three points.
“We are experienced enough to know that if you don’t put your chances away, if you don’t bury teams when you should, then you might pay for it, and Northampton are up there for a reason,” said the Irishman, who replaced the sacked James Rowberry as Newport boss on October 20.
“Look, the chances we missed in the first half, I thought their goalkeeper was absolutely outstanding, but all in all, from experience, we did know that might come back to haunt us, and it did.
“I would have taken a point before the game to be honest, but we are disappointed that we didn’t win because that’s the mentality in that dressing room, we are winners.
“I can’t really be greedy, well I can, because I wanted to win, and we should have won.”
As for Cobblers boss Jon Brady, he was relieved Hoskins’ 12th goal of the season ensured his team came away with some reward from a game in which they were miles off being their best.
It was a disjointed and below-par showing from a team sitting in third place in Sky Bet League Two.
He admitted: “We were lack-lustre in the first half, and it wasn’t good enough.
“I made some changes at half-time, and we needed to. I felt we had good possession, but nothing purposeful, and I was very disappointed in that, and I think the crowd felt that as well.
“Look, when you are not at your best and you concede a really bad goal as we did, you give yourselves an uphill battle.
“When there’s a game that you probably should lose and you get a draw out of it, that shows immense character and spirit. We never stopped believing and Sam has saved us again.”
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