Match Report

 

Tue 01 Mar 16

Much-changed Reds produced one of their best performances of the season to ease to a comfortable victory over Newport County.


Scott Boden’s own goal gave them a deserved first-half lead and Shamir Fenelon struck his second of the season early in the second period to double the advantage.


This was an encouraging Crawley performance, full of energy and endeavour with Gwion Edwards, on his 23rd birthday, a creative spark.


Mark Yates had reacted to Saturday’s 2-0 defeat at Leyton Orient by making six changes.


Charles Dunne, signed on loan from Blackpool earlier in they day, and Frankie Sutherland came in for their debuts and there was a first start for Lyle Della-Verde while the recalled Matt Harrold and Fenelon were paired up front. Yates was also able to give Lanre Oyebanjo his first start of the season following his recovery from summer knee surgery.


All three new boys could be pleased with their contribution while the best thing that could be said about Oyebanjo's display was that it looked as if he'd never been away.


Reds began on the front foot and their tempo and work-rate all over the pitch hardly faltered all evening.


There had been a couple of scares for County before goalkeeper Joe Day came to their rescue with a reflex save in the 21st minute when he kept out Edwards’ shot with his legs after he’d been neatly played in by Fenelon.


Mark Byrne blocked Matt Harrold’s drive and with Edwards a threat constantly down the right flank there was little respite for Newport.


But when the opening goal did arrive it was scored by a County player, all be it in the wrong net. BODEN got a great connection on Della-Verde’s inswinging corner but unfortunately at the wrong end as his header flew past Day into the top corner.


That sparked the visitors into life and Paul Jones made his first save from Conor Wilkinson’s header from a corner.


Reds could probably have done without half-time given the momentum they had built up but there was no let-up in the intensity of their performance and after Day had held Edwards’ angled drive they doubled their lead in the 53rd minute.


Skipper Sonny Bradley headed Della-Verde’s corner into the mixer and FENELON reacted first to smuggle it over the line from close range.


Jones produced a superb tip-over to keep out Byrne’s long-range drive but it was an isolated raid by County as Reds looked hungry for more goals.


And the visitors’ night got worse with four minutes to go when Medi Elito was shown a second yellow card for pushing Fenelon, having been booked earlier for a foul on Edwards.


So Reds completed their second double of the campaign and will be looking for more of the same on Saturday against Morecambe.

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