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Graham Coughlan hails Newport’s ‘professional performance’ in win over Oldham

04 Nov 2023 3 minute read
Newport County manager Graham Coughlan. Photo Mike Egerton PA Images

Newport manager Graham Coughlan praised his side for a “professional performance” as they beat Oldham 2-0 at Rodney Parade thanks to two goals from Shane McLoughlin to progress to the FA Cup second round.

The defender opened the scoring as he drilled into the bottom corner after 20 minutes and settled any late nerves with a second goal, a long-range piledriver, 10 minutes from time.

Coughlan is pleased to be in the hat for round two, but he admitted that it was not a game to live long in the memory for anyone other than McLoughlin.

“We got the job done,” said the Exiles boss. “We know how important the FA Cup to the history and tradition of this football club, not to mention the financial side of it.

“It’s probably best described as a good, solid, professional performance.”


Coughlan felt his side should have won more comfortably with Declan Drysdale going close on two occasions, Aaron Wildig seeing an effort cleared off the line and Omar Bogle failing to hit the target with several chances before McLoughlin settled the contest.

“I sound like a broken down record because we seem to have these conversations every week; we need to be more ruthless, more clinical in the final third,” said the Irishman.

“Nick Townsend pulled off two good saves for us as well. They tested us, they asked questions, and it was a tough afternoon.

“We’re really pleased to get through because Oldham are a good team with a good manager, and we’re happy with our afternoon’s work.”

Townsend denied Joe Nuttall with a superb save just before half-time and also prevented substitute Alex Reid from levelling on the hour, while James Norwood wasted an early chance after a poor back-pass from Scot Bennett.

Oldham boss Micky Mellon, taking charge of the Latics for only the fourth time, was disappointed by the quality of the match and by his side’s timid performance.

“We had an opportunity of trying to get a result in the FA Cup,” he said. “We’re a non-league team at the minute, but Newport weren’t going so great and it was an opportunity to show that fight and fire to try to get a result, but it was a very flat afternoon.

“There was little or no atmosphere, it was a bit dead. And we couldn’t string two passes together. We looked nervous, for some reason. I don’t know why, but we took too long to get going.

“We were lacking in qualities against a Football League club and we need to be better.

“We huffed and puffed a little bit in the second half, but, all in all, we went out with a whimper.”

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