Graham Coughlan Newport county

NEWPORT, WALES - JANUARY 28: Graham Coughlan, Manager of Newport County, speaks to the media after the Emirates FA Cup Fourth Round match between Newport County and Manchester United at Rodney Parade on January 28, 2024 in Newport, Wales. (Photo by Ryan Hiscott/Getty Images)

Newport County Boss Graham Coughlan Says: That One’s For The Fans


By Gareth James

Newport County manager Graham Coughlan has paid tribute to the club’s fans after his team earned a convincing 4-1 win at Harrogate.

The County boss admitted his players had disappointed supporters last weekend when they lost 3-0 away to MK Dons.

But Coughlan’s men bounced back in style to move up to 10th place in League Two, just two points outside the play-off spots.

Coughlan said: “We were all annoyed on Saturday with our own performances and our levels, we let a lot of fans down who travelled and we were determined not to do that again.

“The support we received tonight and on Saturday was unbelievable and that victory was for them.

“Just a little pay back, just a little thank you to them because they have been brilliant for us all the year around.

“Let us not underestimate that victory for us away at Harrogate on a Tuesday night after what happened to us on Saturday.

“That is a hell of a victory, that is a hell of a performance as well, I thought we were a different class.”

It was a seventh win in 11 League Two matches for the visitors.

Offrande Zanzala bagged his first goals since January 2023 with a brace while strike partner Will Evans took his season’s tally to 24 in all competitions and Seb Palmer-Houlden was also on target before George Thomson pulled one back for the Sulphurites.

Evans opened the scoring from the penalty spot in the 31st minute after home defender Liam Gibson handled a long ball into the box by Kyle Jameson.

The 26-year-old forward found James Belshaw’s bottom-right corner as the Sulphurites’ keeper dived in the opposite direction.

Two minutes later the lead was doubled when Aaron Wildig saw an initial shot well saved by Belshaw before firing wayward with a follow-up effort that fell to Zanzala to net from a couple of yards at the far post.

Zanzala went on to put the outcome beyond doubt seven minutes into the second period when he stabbed in after the visitors had got the better of the hosts aerially following Adam Lewis’ pumped free-kick into the box from close to the halfway line.

Sub Palmer-Houlden made it 4-0 with 20 minutes left when he latched on to Evans’ ball through the left channel and fired inside the far post from 12 yards.

Thomson grabbed a consolation with his 12th goal of the season when he found Nick Townsend’s bottom-right corner from the edge of the box eight minutes later.


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