The Red Devils picked up a much-deserved victory this afternoon against Newport County. Interim manager Lewis Young led his team to their second league victory of the season after a run of five straight losses. James Tilley gave Crawley the lead in the first half before Ashley Nadesan doubled Crawley’s lead early in the second half. Nathan Moriah Welsh pulled one back with a street strike with just over ten minutes to go, but Crawley held on to all three points.
Crawley started the game well and looked confident with the ball in the opening exchanges. Nick Tsaroulla was causing his usual issues to the opposition defence and had won Crawley a couple of free-kicks in the opening five minutes. Both set pieces were dealt with well by the Newport defence, but it was a decent start from Crawley.
Tsaroualla was then heavily involved at the other end to keep the score level. Omar Bogle muscled himself away from his marker and drilled a ball across the Crawley penalty area. A Newport man looked destined to tap in at the far post, but Tsaroulla was there to intercept at the death.
David Robson, who was chosen to start this afternoon, made a world-class save to deny Newport captain Matt Dolan from range. Dolan lined up a free-kick from range and struck it with perfect weight. The ball looked certain to crash into the back of the net, but Robson met it with an acrobatic fingertip save.
Tom Fellows came close to scoring one of the all-time great goals at the Broadfield Stadium. The West Brom loanee picked up the ball on the touchline and embarked on an incredible solo run. He beat four or five Newport defenders before firing inches wide of the target.
With five minutes to go in the first half, Crawley took a deserved lead. Tom Fellows embarked on a foot race with Newport goalkeeper Joe Day, who had come rushing out of his goal. The Newport keeper reached the ball first but failed to clear it with any conviction as the ball broke to the Crawley man. Fellows drilled the ball into the box, where Tilley gratefully stroked home to give Crawley the lead. The players immediately ran over to interim manager Lewis Young to celebrate together.
Joe Day kept the score at 1-0 on the other side of half-time with a fantastic save to deny Tom Nichols. It was great play from Crawley as Nadesan, Powell and Nichols linked up. Powell set the ball dead for Nichols, who swept a powerful effort at goal. Day reacted excellently to tip the Crawley skipper’s effort over the bar.
Crawley’s lead soon doubled as Ashley Nadesan headed home expertly from a set-piece. Jack Powell delivered an inviting ball into the box, which Nadesan expertly headed home with a deft flick. A lot of credit should go to Jake Hessenthaler, who expertly won the free-kick with great footwork.
Lewis Young introduced Dom Telford, Aramide Oteh and the returning George Francomb with twenty minutes to go. Newport were holding the ball well, and Crawley were in need of some fresh legs.
With just over ten minutes to go, Newport pulled a goal back. The ball broke to Nathan Moriah Welsh on the edge of the box, and the youngster fired a beautiful strike into the top corner.
David Robson was the hero for Crawley at the death as he made a brilliant fingertip save from a scramble in the box. Somehow the Crawley defence kept the ball out of the net as the ball bounced between amber and red shirts and somehow stayed out of the net.
Crawley held on to claim a much-deserved three points this afternoon. A vastly improved performance pleased the masses behind the goal as Crawley claimed their second victory of the season.
REDS XI: Robson, Johnson (Francomb 66’), Conroy, Craig, Tsaroulla, Tilley (Francillette 90’), Powell, Hessenthaler, Fellows (Telford 72’), Nichols, Nadesan (Oteh 66’)
Attendance: 2839 (232 away)