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23 October 2021 Venue Memorial Stadium Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League Two

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Match Previews

Match Preview - Rovers v Newport

22 October 2021

The lowdown on Saturday's fixture at the Mem.

Rovers head back to the Mem following an unbeaten week on the road.

Rovers returned from both Bradford and Colchester with a point, stretching an unbeaten streak away from home to three games.

Newport County visit the Mem on Saturday, in a fixture that has somewhat of a local derby feel, given the short proximity between the two clubs.

Get all your need-to-know info below ahead of this weekend's game!

Manager's Preview

Joey Barton sat down with the local press on Friday morning, offering his thought's on our recent away form and his take on Saturday's fixture.

Barton focused on the role the crowd can play in building positive momentum come 3pm Saturday...

"They’re (the fans) starting to understand what we’re trying to do and they can see the results coming, but we need our 12th man on Saturday because Newport will have that with the travelling contingent, they’ll be full of confidence with the new manager boost they will get.

"They (Newport) are already a good settled side who try to play the right way and I don’t think we’ve earned the right for teams to fear coming to the Mem, especially when there is that bit of nervousness in our crowd.

"I think the Gasheads need to trust that this team is going to move in the right direction. It has done in recent weeks and if we get that 12th man support, which they can be when they’re really behind us, I think that will set us up for a really positive performance and hopefully a really positive afternoon on Saturday."

Player Preview

Alfie Kilgour also spoke with the press ahead of Friday's training session. Being a local lad, Kilgour highlighted the derby nature of this fixture and how much he's looking forward to the atmosphere this weekend at BS7.

Opposition View

With a new Manager announced on Tuesday, the focus on the pre-match media from Saturday's visitors has been on the arrival of a new boss at Rodney Parade.

Rowberry, who is from Newport, insists that he's delighted to be at the helm of the Exiles, telling, "It gives me goosebumps thinking about being manager of the football club.

"It's a dream come true in many ways to start my managerial career at the club that I've got lots of connections to,"

"Being from Newport and living in Newport all my life, I am ecstatic to get going!"

On Rovers, Rowberry added, "They're 17th in the league at the moment, they'll be industrious - a bit like [manager] Joey [Barton] was as a player. They'll be hard-working and they've changed system quite a few times this season so we'll have to be prepared for that.

"But make no illusions, the focus for me and my team and my staff will be about us and that's what we've got to focus on: Newport County."

Form Guide

Saturday's game will be James Rowberry's first game in charge of Newport County, following his appointment on Tuesday.

Rowberry joins the Exiles following a stint as first-team coach at Cardiff City and will be looking to emulate the recent success of Michael Flynn, who guided the club to two play-off finals.

This season the Exiles' mixed form has seen them occupy a mid-table position in Sky Bet League Two, tallying 17 points from 13 games so far this term.

Their recent form has seen them pick up just one win over the past five games, beating Scunthorpe United by a comfortable 3-0 margin at home at the start of October.

County's two away wins this season have come thanks to 1-0 victories at both Oldham and Tranmere.


View from the Press Bench

Chris Kirwan from the South Wales Argus provides an insight into the form of Saturday's opponents.

"Newport County AFC are starting a new era and manager James Rowberry takes over a side in pretty good shape.

"The Exiles have been inconsistent so far this season, hindered by injuries, coronavirus and a hectic schedule that saw them playing on the road at the start of the season because of work to the pitch at Rodney Parade. That was followed by the departure of Michael Flynn but caretaker boss Wayne Hatswell has led them on a four-game unbeaten streak in which the performances have been strong.

"They should have won against Carlisle on Tuesday but paid the price for missed chances and ended up holding on for a draw after, like Rovers, ending with nine men.

"The key man will be Matty Dolan, who sets the tone whether at the heart of the defence of sitting in midfield. Calm on the ball and with the ability to pick a pass under pressure, he is pivotal in tough away games.

"Further forward, look out for the lively Swansea City loanee Ollie Cooper and Dom Telford, who is fresh from a superb pair of goals against Carlisle.

"County will aim to take the sting out of the home support by holding onto the ball – something they did well when Exeter were pressing last week – and will be keen to stretch this unbeaten run and stay in touch with the play-offs."

Betting Preview

League sponsors Sky Bet have Rovers priced at 6/4 to pick up three points on Saturday. Brett Pitman can be backed at 2/1 to be on the scoresheet at any time, while Aaron Collins can be backed at 6/1 to open the scoring on Saturday.

To bet with Sky Bet please click HERE. Please bet responsibly.

Ref Watch

Scott Oldham is the man is in charge of Saturday's contest. Oldham has officiated 12 games this season so far, handing out 24 yellow cards and two red cards. His last Rovers game came in December 2020, in our 2-0 home defeat against Gillingham. In total, he has officiated 28 games in Sky Bet League Two, averaging 22.86 fouls per game and 2.57 yellow cards.


Matchday Info

Saturday's game is ALL TICKET - with no tickets available on the day.

In-person sales will end at 4pm Friday, with online ticket sales available up until 9am Saturday.

To purchase a ticket online for the game - please click HERE.

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Match Reports

Match Report : Rovers 1-3 Newport County

23 October 2021

Dom Telford returned to haunt his former employers as Bristol Rovers succumbed to a 3-1 defeat to near-neighbours Newport County.

Rovers went into the game on the back of a three-match unbeaten run in the league, making just one change; Anderton in for the suspended Harries. Newport kicked off, attacking the Thatchers End, in front of a sold-out away following and soon put the home defence under pressure; Anderton clearing his lines well.


Belshaw was then called into action to gather safely from a dangerous Norman cross as Rovers struggled to exert any authority. County again pressed, but Baker-Richardson crossed wastefully when he had options in the middle. Rovers finally found their way down the left on seven minutes and only a superb tackle from County skipper Matty Dolan stopped Aaron Collins opening the scoring against his old club.

The probing Evans looked to fire the Gas from midfield, but it was the visitors who again threatened on 12 minutes, Baker Richardson firing low and hard to the middle of the goal, but Rovers’ number one James Belshaw saved well with his legs. County went even closer from the resulting corner, Dolan’s header brilliantly headed off the line by Rovers’ skipper Glenn Whelan. Dolan injured himself making the header, and departed the action in the 15th minute, replaced by Finn Azaz.

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The game continued to threaten to splutter into life, with both sides having some bright spells of possession but flattering to deceive in front of goal. The running battle between Norman and Rovers left-back Nick Anderton was keeping the fans on their toes as the wind began to swirl around the Mem. The Rovers defence then opened up to allow County to take a deserved lead in the 26th minute. Cain was played in by Wilmott, and his cross was slid in at the back post by Courtney Baker-Richardson. The Gas threatened to hit back immediately, but Collins was outnumbered on the edge of the County box.

Disaster then struck after half an hour as Belshaw was too casual with a clearance, which fell straight to Baker-Richardson, who set up ex-Pirate Dom Telford to swivel and fire beyond the Rovers keeper to double the visitors’ lead. Nicholson fired wide after 33 minutes as Rovers still searched to register an effort on target to test the returning Joe Day in the County goal.

Chaotic defending in the home penalty area in the 38th minute saw a County corner find its way to Telford, who looked certain to make it 3-0, but Belshaw made a fabulous save, low down to his right. Rovers then raced away and Collins was hauled down by former Rovers favourite James Clarke, which resulted in the game’s first yellow card

It was end-to-end stuff now, as Evans burst clear but a superb save from Day stopped him from halving the deficit. County immediately went up the other end and Baker-Richardson wasted a chance to extend the Exiles’ lead. Out of the blue, in first-half injury-time, Brett Pitman turned beautifully and fired high into the top right corner of Day’s net, giving him absolutely no chance.

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The second half got underway with Collins immediately looking to get Rovers back on level terms down the left, but the frontman was adjudged to have fouled Norman. Rovers kept up the increased urgency and a fine Anderson cross was sweetly met at the near post by Pitman, whose first-time volley flashed past Day’s left-hand post.

Belshaw was then called into action to stop an Azaz drive low to his left as the game already looked stretched. Luke Thomas then raced down the right, cut inside, then again, before setting up Nicholson, who failed to hit the target from ten yards. Pitman then nearly put Thomas through again, but his inviting through ball was cleared by Day, before the Rovers number 40 then won a corner on the right.

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It was all Rovers now and Norman could count himself fortunate not to have seen a yellow from Mr Oldham, after pulling back Nicholson. Rovers then lost possession down the left, Telford finishing from close quarters after tricky play from Azaz to make it 3-1 to County in the 61st minute.

Sam Nicholson showed his marker a clean pair of heels as Rovers tried to get back in the game once again, before Evans fired over Day’s bar. A triple change for the Gas in the 69th minute saw Westbrooke, Coutts and Finley replace Collins, Anderton and Whelan. The advancing Evans was cynically brought down by Wilmott, leaving the referee little option but to brandish a yellow card. County’s Lewis was then lucky to escape a caution of his own after diving to try to win a free-kick.


The Gas won a corner in the 77th minute, Kilgour rising at the far post to test Day with a header. Telford’s afternoon was over in the 79th minute; County’s two-goal hero replaced by the 42-year-old Kevin Ellison. Finley and Baker-Richardson both saw yellow for a shoulder barge off the ball apiece and players from both sides surrounded the offenders. It was to be the County man’s last action though, as he was replaced by Timmy Abraham.

The striker should have added a fourth in injury-time, as he was put clear on goal as Rovers made a hash of a throw-in, but he ran the ball out of play. Not content with that, he then broke free again right on the whistle but chipped harmlessly over Belshaw’s goal.

Rovers face Harrogate next in the Sky Bet League Two on Saturday, 30th October. (3PM KO).

Rovers: Belshaw, Kilgour, Thomas, Collins (69), Anderton (69), Taylor, Anderson, Evans, Whelan (c) (69), Pitman.

Subs: Ward, Finley (69), Westbrooke (69), Coutts (69), Spence, Hoole, Brown.

Newport County: Day, Norman, Clarke, Wilmott, Dolan (15), Baker-Richardson (87), Lewis, Telford (79), Cain, Demetriou, Cooper.

Subs: Townsend, Fisher, Abraham (87), Azaz (15), Collins, Ellison (79), Missilou.

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Ticket News

Ticket Info - Newport County

14 October 2021

Ticket info for our Sky Bet League Two encounter with Newport County.

Rovers host Newport County at the Mem on Saturday, 23rd October (KO - 3pm). 

Fans should be aware that for this fixture, there will be no on the day tickets available and all tickets will have to be bought in advance.

In-store sales will finish at 4pm on Friday, 22nd October. Ticket office opening hours are 10am - 4pm (Tuesday - Friday).

Online sales for this game will finish at 9am on Saturday, 23rd October

To purchase tickets online for this fixture - please click HERE.

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