Match Details: 02/04/2016
Yeovil Town 1-0 Newport County
Skybet League Two
Yeovil Goals: Jack Compton (15)
Yeovil Line-Up: 1. Artur Krysiak, 3. Nathan Smith, 4. Matthew Dolan, 6. Jakub Sokolík, 8. Marc Laird, 10. Shaun Jeffers, 11. Ryan Dickson, 14. Jack Compton, 16. Tahvon Campbell, 24. Connor Roberts, 32. Liam Shephard,
Subs: 2. Ben Tozer, 7. Kevin Dawson, 9. Ryan Bird, 12. Chris Weale, 21. Alex Lacey, 23. Harry Cornick, 38. Leroy Lita
Substitutes Used: Kevin Dawson for Jack Compton (51 mins), Ryan Bird for Shaun Jeffers (59 mins), Ben Tozer for Matthew Dolan (77 mins)
Bookings: Tahvon Campbell (Ungentlemanly Conduct, 45), Nathan Smith (Foul, 73)
Yeovil Town put themselves close to the finish line this afternoon, after the club secured their fifth 1-0 victory in eight fixtures, with a Jack Compton penalty sending Newport County home pointless. Compton's vital spot kick came 15 minutes into a scrappy match, when Tahvon Campbell was fouled inside the box, giving the winger his fifth goal of the season. Newport pressed hard throughout the match, but with Artur Krysiak coming out with the sponsors' man of the match award, their seventh clean sheet during those eight matches ensured the back line stayed watertight. The victory moves Yeovil now 13 points clear of the drop, leaving the Glovers needing seven points from their remaining seven fixtures to guarantee League Two football next season - with York drawing and Dagenham not playing, the bottom two clubs are now marooned by nine points, meaning that the reality is that those two will soon be planning for Conference football.
The Glovers went into the match making four changes to their starting line-up. The loss of captain Darren Ward meant that Ryan Dickson took over the armband with Jakub Sokolik being moved into the middle as a centre-back. That allowed Connor Roberts to return into the side, following his Wales Under-21 debut. In midfield Ben Tozer was unfortunate to be replaced by Roberts' Swansea team-mate Liam Shephard, who came into the team in a midfield position. Up front Brandon Goodship had been ill during the week and so dropped out of the squad, whilst Ryan Bird moved onto the bench. That meant that Tahvon Campbell and Shaun Jeffers got opportunities to impress, with Jeffers playing through the middle.
Newport settled the fastest, perhaps in part due to Yeovil's new look back four, who needed the opening ten minutes to sort out their organisation and bearings. Scott Boden broke through early on, but Artur Krysiak saved well at his near post to push the ball out for a corner. Missing Darren Ward at the back, Newport were putting balls into the box that the defence didn't quite know whether to challenge for, or leave leading to an edgy start to the game.
At the other end, a significant battle was also breaking out. Newport full-back Danny Holmes had clearly been given the task of marking Tahvon Campbell, and he wasn't enjoying it. After two fouls he got himself into the book for the second offence, and then when he bundled Campbell over inside the box, he conceded a penalty against his side. Referee Keith Hill was rather generous not to bring out a second yellow card, given how often players get booked for such things, but Newport managed to keep all eleven players on the pitch. Jack Compton was the club's last successful penalty taker - scored at Wimbledon in January - and with him back in the starting line-up he stepped up and fired the ball down the middle to give the Glovers the lead.
Yeovil improved somewhat after the goal, with quality crosses from Connor Roberts and Jack Compton down the right flank causing Newport problems - the only down side was the lack of strikers in the right places at the right time to get a boot or a head on the ball to increase the lead. As such, there weren't too many clear-cut chances to note at either end of the park. In the closing stages of the half, Alex Rodman and Tahvon Campbell got involved in a bit of an off-the-ball scrap that referee Hill had to deal with two or three minutes after the event, after consulting with his Fourth Official when the ball went finally out of play. He decided to dish out a yellow card each - an odd moment in a slightly stop-start first half that had started late, and finished even later due to a couple of injuries.
The half time interval got even more extended when referee Hill couldn't come out for the second half due to injury, with assistant referee Brett Huxtable taking duties in the middle. Newport started the second period strongly, with Medy Elito's effort just about clearing the crossbar, whilst Souleymane Coulibaly put a header onto the post with Artur Krysiak well beaten - an effort that actually wouldn't have counted had it gone in, due to a linesman's flag going up. But it gave a clear indication that the visitors were going to push for an equaliser.
Coulibaly didn't last the distance though, and was replaced by Lenell John-Lewis, with Newport tending to play a lot longer after his introduction as they tried to fire the ball into the box on numerous occasions, with Artur Krysiak frequently having to punch clear, whilst Nathan Smith - who can surely no longer be called a stand-in centre-back - particularly dominant in the air, even if he had to land himself in the book to stop one Newport attack, with Liam Shephard having been a bit sloppy in losing possession in midfield. Newport's head of steam wasn't helped by one of their fans taking their passions too far - an object thrown onto the pitch at Artur Krysiak had to be dealt with by the referee - whilst injured players going down for treatment also stopped their momentum.
In the final ten minutes, Ryan Dickson had a rare shot on goal for the Glovers, as his long range attempt meant that Newport keeper Joe Day had to be brought into action. But overall it was scrappy from both teams, and the fact that it took a spot kick to divide the two teams probably summed up the day. Both clubs are probably destined for League Two football next season, no matter what they do in their final seven games, but with Newport having lost four games in a row, and Yeovil having won five of their last eight, there's little doubt as to which club would be the happier at the end.
Link: 2015-16 Latest League Two Table.
Final Score: Yeovil Town 1 Newport County 0.
Scorers: Jack Compton (1-0, 15 mins, pen)
1. Artur Krysiak
24. Connor Roberts 6. Jakub Sokolik 3. Nathan Smith 11. Ryan Dickson (Capt)
32. Liam Shephard 8. Marc Laird 4. Matt Dolan
14. Jack Compton 10. Shaun Jeffers 16. Tahvon Campbell
12. Chris Weale (GK) 2. Ben Tozer (77 mins for Matt Dolan) 7. Kevin Dawson (51 mins for Jack Compton) 9. Ryan Bird (59 mins for Shaun Jeffers) 21. Alex Lacey 23. Harry Cornick 38. Leroy Lita
30. Joe Day
2. Danny Holmes 4. Darren Jones 12. Janoi Donacien 5. Ben Davies
23. Alex Rodman 28. Tommy O'Sullivan 33. Mark Byrne 7. Medy Elito
19. Scott Boden 9. Souleymane Coulibaly
3. Scott Barrow 8. Yan Klukowski 10. Lenell John-Lewis (65 mins for Souleymane Coulibaly) 15. Joe Green 20. Tom Owen-Evans 21. Matt Partridge 26. Tom Meechan (88 mins for Janoi Donacien)
Yeovil Bookings: Tahvon Campbell (off the ball incident, 45 mins), Nathan Smith (foul, 73 mins)
Newport Bookings: Danny Holmes (foul, 10 mins), Alex Rodman (off the ball incident, 45 mins), Janoi Donacien (foul, 86 mins)
Yeovil Match Statistics: Possession: 52%; Shots: 3; Shots On Target: 2; Corners: 2; Fouls: 10.
Newport Match Statistics: Possession: 48%; Shots: 6; Shots On Target: 2; Corners: 7; Fouls: 10.
Referee: Keith Hill (Hertfordshire). Assistants: Brett Huxtable (Devon) and Steven Plane (Worcestershire). Fourth Official: Andrew Laver (Hampshire).
Attendance: 4,063 (with 518 Newport supporters).