Newport County striker Jamille Matt. Pic: Getty Images.

Matt Finish Keeps Newport County Second, While Tom Is King Of The League Two Clean Sheets

Newport County 1, Port Vale 0

Goalkeeper Tom King is playing a major role in Newport County’s bid got sustain a promotion challenge in SkyBet League Two.

Former Millwall goalkeeper King became County’s first choice after Joe Day was snapped up by Cardiff City – and he has proved a major success.

Plymouth-born King, aged 24, has kept six successive SkyBet League Two clean sheets – and has not conceded a goal in almost 10 hours football.

That record, of course, is a tribute to the whole County team, but the spotlight falls on ex-England youth International King.

The only goals he has conceded in seven Football League fixtures was in a 2-2 draw against Mansfield in the opening match of the season.

When King kept a sixth consecutive clean sheet it was Jamaican-born Jamille Matt who fired the winner against Port Vale.

County manager Michael Flynn sent on Matt for Joss Labadie just after the hour and went for the win, switching Robbie Willmott to right-back.

“We were at home and we were the only team looking to win it, so I went for it,” said Michael Flynn.

“I took the right-back off, Robbie slotted in to that position well and it gave us more pace and attacking threat down the right.

“And I’m over the moon for Jamille because he’s been frustrated and snatching at things as he’s tried to get off the mark and get that first goal, but he’s done it now.

“The burden has been shaken off and I hope he can go on a bit of a run now.”

Newport should have won in normal time, but Padraig Amond’s penalty was saved after 82 minutes and County had to hang on, with Vale skipper Leon Legge heading against the bar near the end.

“The players gave their all and were fantastic,” said Flynn.

“We just needed that little bit extra in the final third, but we were so resilient with our defending all over the pitch.”

Matt’s winner came from a Corey Whitely cross in the 77th minute to extend Newport’s long-standing unbeaten league record to 17 matches.

The Exiles are second position, two points behind Exeter City, in League Two.

Newport now plat Northampton Town and Macclesfield away in League Two fixtures before leaders Exeter go to Rodney Parade for a top of the table clash on Saturday, September 21.

Newport County (4-1-2-1-2): Tom King, Ryan Haynes, Mark O’Brien, Ryan Inniss, Daniel Leadbitter (Corey Whitely 75), Josh Sheehan, Robbie Willmott, Joss Labadie (Jamille Matt 62), Matty Dolan, Padraig Amond, Tristan Abrahams (Kyle Howkins 90+1). Subs not used: Townsend, Maloney, Poleon, Ekpiteta

Port Vale (4-3-3): Scott Brown, James Gibbons, Leon Legge (capt), Nathan Smith, Adam Crookes, David Worrall, Luke Joyce, Tom Conlon (Callum Evans 85), David Amoo, Richie Bennett (Tom Pope 75), Cristian Montano (Archer 79). Subs not used: Maddison, Kennedy, Cullen, Taylor

Referee: Christopher Pollard

Attendance: 3,913 (255 away)

One thought on “Matt Finish Keeps Newport County Second, While Tom Is King Of The League Two Clean Sheets

  1. King looks reliable, Haines looks like a direct replacement for Butler, and hopefully Ryan Inniss won’t be suspended too long, he looked like one of the best of the back four.

    Some more goals in the side would be a boost though. Haines is a good playmaker, but Matt and Amond are perhaps going to be quieter this season than they were last year.

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