Stevenage v Newport County [Match Preview]

By Pete H

At what point do we start to fret? After we drew another blank at Forest Green, is Newport indoors the one to get us going again? Based on recent form, we’re in danger of sliding into a rut that we couldn’t ever escape last season. Sure – do an ‘at this stage’ comparison and you can see that we’re better off. But not by much. Our 3-0 win over Oldham is pretty much the main difference there. So, where did the early signs of promise from our first three matches go? And how can we get them back – starting against the Exiles under lights?

The Details: Stevenage v Newport County

Where’s the game?

Boro’ return to the Lamex for the first time in two weeks.

Can I watch Stevenage v Newport County

The only legit way to catch all the action is to sign up with iFollow and buy a Video Match Pass. If you’re a season ticket holder, though, you should already have your special code.

Don’t forget – this one kicks off at 7pm. Tune in at 7.45pm and you’ll miss the first half.

How are Boro’ shaping up…?

In ‘all’ competitions, it’s now five games without a win for us. You might feel indifferent about the EFL Trophy. We do. But it all counts. After all, it was our main source of joy last term. And that says a lot. Not that we want to look for any comparisons. After all, it wasn’t ’til our sixth – SIXTH – league outings to score at the top end of last season. It includes defeats to Salford and Bradford, as well as a goalless draw up at Mansfield. Do you ever get a sense of deja vu?

Lets hope we take a different path when the Exiles come to town.

… and how are they looking?

In short, the Exiles look a little worrying. It’s been a blinder of a start. OK, so it’s not quite at the same level as free-scoring Cambridge United. But the South Welsh lads have the same return from the first six league fixtures as the Us: four wins, one draw and one defeat. After losing to Cambridge on the 10th, the Exiles bounced back on Saturday with three points at home to Tranmere. Let’s face it – our current form means we won’t scare them much.

Then again, that’s something we could maybe use to our advantage?

Our story with Newport County so far

For the most part, our head-to-head looks good. In 11 meetings to date, we’ve won six. And only two have gone their way; both of which were at Dave Parade. Our 3-3 draw on the opening day of the 2017-8 campaign is the only time we’ve not come out on top on our own patch. It means there’s a high benchmark for us to meet. An unbeaten home record against the Exiles is at stake. You might say that it has to end some time. We say “no it doesn’t”.

Last Meeting: Newport County 1-1 Stevenage, 14 December 2019
Classic Encounter: Stevenage 3-3 Newport County, 05 August 2017

Who’s the referee in charge?

Lee Swabey.

Up until this point in time, Mr Swabey has reffed nine Boro’ games. And we’d love it to be a perfect 10th on this occasion. The main problem is that it’s been quite a while since the last time we won on his watch. In fact, it’s back to February 2017 and our win at Crawley Town for that. It’s two wins in nine overall, with five defeats – including our 8-0 record-breaker against Charlton. Oh, we haven’t scored in the last three straight matches when he’s taken charge either. Wasn’t anyone else available?

Last Meeting: Stevenage 0-1 Port Vale, 11 January 2020

I have £1 to bet – what are my options?

It’s hard to see the markets budging much between us going live with this preview and kick off. So, expect the bookies to still be leaning towards the Exiles come 7pm. At the time our content lackey wrote this, Newport’s best price was 5/4 (multiple). Meanwhile, ours was 12/5 (multiple).You’d think we were on the road for this one. With our scoring record grinding to a halt, you may well be tempted by ‘No’ on the Both Teams To Score market; 22/25 (888bet) is the best we’ve seen offered.

Prices may change. Be Gamble Aware – when the fun stops, knock it on the head…

Stevenage v Newport County: Our verdict?

It’ll be a toughie and we’ll dig deep. But our lack of goals will come back to haunt us. 0-1.