We take a look at Newport County...
The pitch at home ground Rodney Parade blighted Newport County’s return to the Football League. A number of postponements meant they were well behind other teams in terms of games played during February and March. Up until that point, they had been flirting with the play-offs, but the backlog of fixtures meant they ended up finishing in 14th, with 58 points from their 46 matches.
Former Southend United man Justin Edinburgh guided the club back to the Football League, and may well have got into the play-offs with them first time around had it not been for the fixture backlog. He joined Newport in 2011 and after finishing as runners-up in the FA Trophy in 2012, they won promotion via the play-offs in 2013. Edinburgh was linked with a number of jobs during the season, including the vacancy at Portsmouth.
THE MEN TO WATCH
Chris Zebroski finished as their top goalscorer last season, and signed a new deal this summer. The big striker got 13 goals in 39 games during the previous campaign.
Right-back Ryan Jackson put in an impressive performance against Blues at Rodney Parade, having joined County in July 2013 from Macclesfield Town. He made 36 appearances in total, used as a wing-back in a 5-3-2 formation on occasion.
Robbie Willmott may have missed a penalty at Roots Hall, but the attacker is highly rated and produced some impressive performances last season. In total he made 53 appearances for the club, scoring six goals.
WHAT’S HAPPENED THIS SUMMER
Darcy Blake looks set to move on after a short spell with the club following his release from Crystal Palace in January.
Darren Jones and Kevin Feely have joined the club, along with Yan Klukowski from Forest Green Rovers.
David Pipe, Ryan Burge and Harry Worley have been released, while a number of others have yet to agree new terms, including Ismail Yakubu.
Chris Zebroski has signed a new deal.
Having not met since 1985, Newport edged last season’s games, winning 3-1 at Rodney Parade, before a 0-0 draw at Roots Hall. In total, Blues have won 40 games, lost 42 and drawn 14.