Newport County v Cambridge United FA Cup Round 2 Player Ratings
A slightly different Weekend for the Exiles, playing on a Sunday with a chance in the elusive Third Round of the FA Cup at stake with a home tie versus fellow League Two club Cambridge United.
There was one change in the Newport County XI that saw them beat Swindon eight days ago with Mark O’Brien replacing the injured Scott Bennett.
Newport County 2–0 Cambridge United
Attendance: 2,748 (178 Away)
FA Cup R2, Rodney Parade, 3rd December 2017.
Goals: Joss Labadie 2' and 81'
Joe Day — 7
It was a relatively comfortable afternoon for the Exiles ‘keeper, who was quiet for the majority minus a simple stop in the 30’ and his slip and near costly mistake in the 61' after being put under pressure from Cambridge powerhouse Uche Ikpeazu.
David Pipe — 7
The Right Wing-Back defended superbly when called upon and offered support in attack when needed, rarely put a foot wrong minus being caught out of position once or twice.
Ben White — 7
The young loanee did not look out of place in an experienced defence. The right-sided centre-back defended well and kept tabs on Cambridge danger men Ikpeazu and Ibehre. White had a successful afternoon winning most of his aerial battles with only a misplaced pass and being caught flat-footed once was the only downsides of his afternoon.
Mark O’Brien — 7.5
A rock at the back and like his fellow partners at the back he prevented many opportunities for danger men Ikpeazu and Ibehre, plus, making a crucial tackle after running 40 yards to deny a Cambridge counter-attack midway through the second half.
Mickey Demetriou — 8.5
The standout performer in the back five. A superb display from the left-sided centre-back who was faced with the task of keeping Uche Ikpeazu on shackles. Demetriou looked at ease beating the target man in aerial duels and foot races throughout the game. The defender also picked a pass or two throughout the game to aid in the attack. Demetriou made a few crucial blocks and did not put a foot wrong.
Dan Butler — 7.5
The left wing-back was up and down tirelessly throughout helping in both attack and defence. Despite his size, he made a few nice tackles on Uche Ikpeazu but unexpectedly struggled in the air versus the giant.
Ben Tozer — 8
Mr Consistent performed well again, playing in a two-man pivot with Matt Dolan. Tozer’s specialist long throw troubled Cambridge at times and the Newport County man was involved in breaking down most of Cambridge’s threats through the middle of the park. Minus a sliced long-shot the versatile Exile had a comfortable game.
A really useful squad member who rarely lets you down.
Matt Dolan — 7.5
The second player in County’s two-man midfield pivot oozed class at times in possession but also appeared wasteful with a few misplaced passes. Dolan played a decent all-around game and provided a stunning assist for the first goal.
Joss Labadie — 10
The skipper was the heartbeat of the side, antagonising the opposition from the off with a great strike from Matt Dolan’s freekick. Labadie was like a rottweiler throughout covering every blade of grass, winning freekicks, defending doggedly but took a knock which scared the home fans but was thankfully okay. Labadie thrived in his more forward role and deservedly got his second goal after some great work from Nouble who delivered an inch-perfect cross which the skipper volleyed home to book Newport County a spot in the Third round of the FA Cup.
Shawn McCoulsky — 6
The young loanee looked a shadow of his former-self, isolated for large parts of the game and struggled with the physicality and dirtiness of the Cambridge defence. The young striker could have worked a bit harder off the ball and was withdrawn in the 65th minute.
Frank Nouble — 9
The target man didn’t get on the score-sheet but worked hard throughout, providing an assist to Labadie’s second goal and antagonised the Cambridge defence throughout. Big Frank worked the channels tirelessly and had a couple of the shots that earned County corners at various points throughout the match. Possibly, could’ve done with some more support from McCoulsky in the first half but he posted an aerial threat throughout the game.
Padraig Amond — (on for McCoulsky in the 65th) N/A
The Irishman replaced the loanee just after the hour mark and showed off his impressive work ethic but didn’t have much of an impact, but did a solid job whilst creating a chance or two.
Robbie Willmott — (on for Dolan in the 77th) N/A
The versatile player returned to the bench after suffering from concussion against Barnet. Fortunately, Willmott was involved in shoring up the midfield late into the game but minus a defensive job or two he was relatively quiet.
Sean Rigg — (on for Labadie in the 84th) N/A
After playing a large part of the game at Swindon due to an early injury to Scott Bennett, Rigg dropped back to the bench and bar one chance late into the game had nothing to do in his 10-minute cameo.