MX23RW : Monday, June 14 06:46:27| >> :600:1850617:1850617:
May 18, 2021 at 8.15pm UK at Rodney Parade
NewportNewport County
2-0
Forest GreenForest Green Rovers
Dolan (31'), Collins (56')
Sheehan (45+1')
FT(HT: 1-0)

Bernard (19')

Preview: Newport County vs. Forest Green Rovers - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Tuesday's League Two clash between Newport County and Forest Green Rovers, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Newport County and Forest Green Rovers head into the first leg of their League Two playoff semi-final having ended the regular campaign on the same amount of points.

While the home side have put together a five-match unbeaten streak, the visitors posted back-to-back wins to earn a spot in the top six.


Match preview

Newport County boss Mike Flynn pictured in August 2019© Reuters

Although there have been times this season when Newport were in contention for automatic promotion, a strong finish was required to claim a place in the playoffs.

Eleven points were collected from five fixtures, a period which included a pivotal 1-0 victory over champions Cheltenham Town.

A point at relegated Southend United earned County fifth position rather than seventh, ensuring that they avoided in-form Morecambe.

Nevertheless, despite conceding just three goals in nine matches, Michael Flynn knows that his side can ill-afford any complacency at this stage of the campaign.

Remarkably, none of this squad have scored more than six strikes all season, the team reliant on three goals in as many games from defender Mickey Demetriou during the run-in.

Having made the decision to replace Mark Cooper with Under-18s boss Jimmy Ball on an interim basis, the Forest Green hierarchy were taking what they considered to be a calculated risk.

With 10 points being collected from their final six matches, the gamble has paid off thus far, and Ball will be increasingly confident of achieving an unlikely promotion.

Forest Green's three victories since Ball's appointment have been through strong second-half performances, the last outing against Oldham Athletic seeing three goals netted after the hour mark.

At a time when just three strikes have been conceded in five encounters, the signs are there that Rovers are peaking at the right time as they bid to move into League One for the first time in their history.

Aaron Collins has contributed three goals and an assist during his last two appearances, match-winning performances after going 11 fixtures without finding the back of the net.

Newport County League Two form:
  • L
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • W
  • D

Forest Green Rovers League Two form:
  • W
  • D
  • D
  • L
  • W
  • W



Team News

Having avoided defeat since April 20, Flynn is expected to keep changes to his Newport side down to a minimum.

Matthew Dolan, County's joint top goalscorer, is an option in a three-man backline, but preference is likely to be given to the trio which started against Southend.

Forest Green will have to make do without Ebou Adams after the midfielder was dismissed for two yellow cards against Tranmere Rovers.

While Scott Wagstaff could drop back into the centre of the pitch, Ball will give consideration to handing a fourth start of the season to Isaac Hutchinson.

Newport County possible starting lineup:
King; Shephard, Bennett, Demetriou; Lewis, Labadie, Sheehan, Hartigan, Haynes; Collins, Amond

Forest Green Rovers possible starting lineup:
McGee; Godwin-Malife, Stokes, Cargill; Wilson, Moore-Taylor, Hutchinson, Collins; Davison, Wagstaff


SM words green background

We say: Newport County 2-1 Forest Green Rovers

Both teams will feel that they have momentum heading into this fixture, something which should lead to a quality contest playing out in South Wales. While the visitors would be satisfied with a share of the spoils, we are backing the home side to edge this fixture by the odd goal in three.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting a double chance bet on a home win or an away win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Home/Away:data


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How you voted: Newport vs Forest Green

Newport County
66.0%
Draw
19.1%
Forest Green Rovers
14.9%
47
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Joe Ledley in Wales training in late 2017
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
CCheltenham TownCheltenham4624101261392282
5Newport CountyNewport4620131357421573
6Forest Green RoversForest Green462013135951873
7Tranmere RoversTranmere462013135550573
8Salford City4619141354342071
9Exeter CityExeter4618161271502170
10Carlisle UnitedCarlisle461812166051966
11Leyton Orient461710195355-261
12Crawley TownCrawley461613175662-661
13Port Vale46179205757060
14Stevenage461418144141060
15Bradford CityBradford461611194853-559
16Mansfield TownMansfield461319145755258
17Harrogate TownHarrogate46169215261-957
18Oldham AthleticOldham46159227281-954
19Walsall461120154553-853
20Colchester UnitedColchester461118174461-1751
21Barrow461311225359-650
22Scunthorpe UnitedScunthorpe46139244164-2348
RSouthend UnitedSouthend461015212958-2945
RGrimsby Town461013233769-3243

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