Support our Nation today - please donate here

Graham Coughlan slams ‘horrendous’ penalty call as Newport lose to Crewe

15 Aug 2023 3 minute read
Newport County manager Graham Coughlan. Photo Mike Egerton PA Images

Graham Coughlan criticised referee Adam Herczeg as well as his side’s second-half showing as Newport capitulated at Crewe.

The official turned down the Welsh side’s penalty claims early in the game after Aaron Wildig appeared to be impeded in the box. Within minutes former County favourite Mickey Demetriou edged Crewe ahead and while Will Evans levelled soon after, Demetriou grabbed his second to restore the Railwaymen’s lead after the break.

“Crewe controlled the game in the second half and we couldn’t get up to speed,” admitted Coughlan, who said he would be visiting the officials’ dressing room after the Gresty Road clash to express his frustration.

“We should have had a penalty when Aaron was dragged down. We got a horrendous excuse from the referee and fourth official who said it was normal football contact. I don’t think it was a red card, but it was definitely a penalty.

“But it was very, very poor from us in the second half after we had been very good in the first half. Our defending left a lot to be desired and I’ve seen stuff like that in a park on Sunday morning.

“Even making changes we didn’t have the legs and that was disappointing after the way we’d played against Doncaster and Charlton in the cup. We can’t have that drop in the level of our performance.”

Demetriou, who left Rodney Parade to join Crewe in the summer, was on hand to finish from close range after Nic Townsend spilled Jack Powell’s free-kick in the eighth minute.

Poor goalkeeping

Another piece of poor goalkeeping had Newport back on terms with on-loan Liverpool youngster Harvey Davies outmuscled on his goal line by Evans, who headed into an empty net.

Davies prevented the visitors from taking control with good saves from Seb Palmer-Houlden and Harry Charsley. But Crewe were the better side after the break and Demetriou volleyed home Joel Tabiner’s free-kick before Elliott Nevitt was upended in the box by Ryan Delaney and Chris Long fired home from the spot.

The lively Nevitt sealed Crewe’s victory when he curled a low shot into the far corner for his first goal for the club, although Charsley reduced the arrears when he drove into the top corner.

Crewe boss Lee Bell said: “Our set-plays are important and our deliveries have been very good which is a credit to the work done by our coach Kenny Lunt.

“We are all pleased for Elliott to get his first goal and we hope this takes him on a run. He doesn’t have setbacks and he doesn’t let things bother him.

“We’ve had a decent start to the season, particularly if you include the performance at Sunderland in the Carabao Cup (where they won 5-3 on penalties).

“It’s a first league win and Newport are a good side, they were excellent when beating Doncaster at the weekend. We had to stick with them and match them and the boys stepped it up in the second half and deserve all the praise.”

Support our Nation today

For the price of a cup of coffee a month you can help us create an independent, not-for-profit, national news service for the people of Wales, by the people of Wales.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Our Supporters

All information provided to Nation.Cymru will be handled sensitively and within the boundaries of the Data Protection Act 2018.