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Newport concede four in heavy home defeat to Bradford

23 Sep 2023 3 minute read
Bradford City’s Andy Cook (right) and Newport County’s James Clarke battle for the ball during the Sky Bet League Two match at Rodney Parade, Newport. (Credit: Robbie Stephenson/PA Wire)

Andy Cook scored a hat-trick as he spearheaded Bradford to a first away win of the season with a 4-1 victory at Newport.

The 32-year-old striker, whose 31 goals last season enabled the Yorkshiremen to reach the play-offs, had not scored in his previous six outings this season, but grabbed two in the first half and then bagged his hat-trick in stoppage time.

It was a win that moved Mark Hughes’ side into the top half of the table and to within three points of the play-off places after an indifferent start.

For hapless County, it was a first home defeat in the league and they were lucky they only conceded four goals. Nick Townsend was forced into a number of key saves in a first half that was totally dominated by the visitors.

Bradford City’s Andy Cook (centre-left) scores their side’s first goal of the game during the Sky Bet League Two match at Rodney Parade, Newport. Picture date: Saturday September 23, 2023. PA Photo. See PA story SOCCER Newport. Photo credit should read: Robbie Stephenson/PA Wire.
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As Bradford poured forward the County defence looked more like a colander than a proper defensive unit. They could simply find no answer to the raids of Rayhaan Tulloch on the right and his partner in crime, Clark Oduor, on the left.

Cook headed home a Tulloch cross to the far post to take the lead in the 14th minute and Tulloch’s simple tap-in doubled the lead after 26 minutes before Cook added a second three minutes later.

A moment of magic from Omar Bogle threw the home side a lifeline in the 35th minute when he latched on to a through ball, skipped around the goalkeeper and tapped home his third goal in four games.

County could not make the most of it though as Cook completed his hat-trick with a header in added time to round things off nicely for the visitors.

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