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‘Not glamorous’ but Graham Coughlan hails fine win for Newport

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 28 Nov 2023

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Newport boss Graham Coughlan praised his side’s grit and determination as they came from behind to take the three points at Morecambe.

On what proved to be a disappointing first night for new Shrimps boss Ged Brannan, goals from Will Evans and Seb Palmer-Houlden either side of the break earned the Exiles a comeback win after Michael Mellon had given the home side an early lead.

Coughlan said: “That was a brilliant performance from our lads.

“You saw a different side to us tonight. It wasn’t glitzy or glamorous and it wasn’t tippy-tappy, it was sheer character, grit and determination and that’s what you have to do in this league.

“Against West Ham a few weeks ago we made 550 passes and didn’t win the game. We didn’t have too many passes tonight but we won the match and that is what football is all about.”

Mellon gave Morecambe the lead on 12 minutes with a fine turn and shot from the edge of the area that squeezed into the bottom right corner of Nick Townsend’s goal.

After a sluggish start the visitors hit back on 29 minutes when the home defence failed to clear a corner and Evans hammered home the rebound.

JJ McKiernan hit the crossbar with a close-range header for the home side on 44 minutes and Adam Mayor was within inches of sliding home a Tom Bloxham cross two minutes into the second half but it was the Exiles who went ahead on 57 minutes.

Morecambe keeper Adam Smith and midfielder Eli King failed to deal with a bouncing ball in the Morecambe box and Palmer-Houlden took advantage of the gift to score from close range.

Mellon forced Townsend into a late save with a shot from 12 yards but the visitors held on to make it two wins from two.

Shrimps boss Brannan said: “I’m disappointed with the result obviously but I’m not disappointed with the performance.

“I thought the first 20 minutes or so was the best I’ve seen us play in the three months I’ve been here as a coach and now manager. We passed it superbly and the move for our goal was brilliant and it’s a shame we couldn’t build on that.

“They came back into it when we didn’t defend a corner well enough and they made it hard for us from there and we then gave away another really sloppy goal and couldn’t pull it back.”

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