Match 05
23rd August 1969
Newport County (a)


Saturday August 23rd 1969. 


Exeter City are still without a point after three games. This afternoon they were beaten 2 - 0 by Newport County at Somerton Park, and it was their lack of finishing which helped to bring about their downfall. Certainly, Exeter played some good football, particularly in the first half, but they missed their chances at crucial times and let Newport off too lightly in that respect. Alan Banks might have scored a hat-trick and Bruce Walker was another player who squandered an opportunity.

Newport: - Weare; McLaughlin, Sprague; Cooper, Aizlewood, Ferguson; Young, Hill, Radford, Derrick, White.

Exeter City:- Shearing; Crawford, Blain; Parker, Sharples, Balson; Giles, Banks, Wingate, Mitten, Walker.

Subs: Hooper (Newport) Pleat (City). Referee:- Mr H.G. New of Portsmouth.

Newport, whose first goal came four minutes before half-time, scored rather out of the blue. They sealed victory 15 minutes from the end. Exeter's player-manager John Newman was not in the side, and Sharples returned at centre half with Balson on his left. The Ironsides had the 16 years old grammar school boy Steve Aizlewood playing only his second senior game. He was at centre half, and along side him was the player-manager Bobby Ferguson. Sharples cleared well volley was blocked. When the same combination tried again a minute later Banks was offside. At this stage the play was nearly always in the City's favour, and they were looking the more threatening side. But five minutes from the interval Exeter were in trouble when their defence failed to clear, and after Radford had had a shot blocked the ball ran to Hill, who was only checked by Shearing, who came out and dived at the forward's feet to capture the ball. And just one minute afterwards Exeter were a goal down, against the run of the play.

Sprague thumped a long pass down the touchline to Hill, who, from 20 yards' range netted with an angled first-time shot past the Exeter goalkeeper's right hand.

Half-time Newport 1 Exeter City 0.

Immediately on the restart Mitten lost the ball in the Newport penalty area and then Giles was crowded out as he tried to go through. As the result of this the City were awarded a free kick ten yards outside the penalty area. They tried the Wingate to Banks move but Weare came out and cleared. Newport, who were lasting the pace better than the City, missed badly after an hour's play when Cooper receiving from Hill and unmarked, put a weak shot high over the bar from six yards' range. In the 70th minute Exeter brought Walker off and replaced him with Pleat. Five minutes later Newport sealed the game. With Crawford well out of position Hill had yards of space to go forward unchallenged, and from his accurate centre Derrick beat Shearing with a well placed header. The Exeter defence was badly at fault.

Attendance 2,525.


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