It would be difficult to write a better redemption story on a soccer field. After flapping into a stoppage time center to gift League Two’s Newport an extraordinary draw, Brighton substitute goalkeeper Jason Steele made four penalty saves to help the Premier League fighters advance to the fourth round. of the FA Cup and avoid any embarrassment after the ordeal of a nail-biting tie.
Adam Webster, whose unfortunate own goal paved the way for extra time, scored the decisive shot as Brighton won 4-3 on penalties after Scot Bennett’s error.
It was another agonizing climax for Newport, which took off on penalties against Newcastle in the Carabao Cup in September, and a particularly cruel crescendo for their goalkeeper Tom King, who made three wonderful saves, including a superb save to deny Lewis Dunk. in overtime.
In the end, King’s opponent proved to be the hero, but Steele couldn’t bear to watch Webster step forward to punch the 14th penalty. “Jason was disappointed in the goal, but he responded well,” Brighton manager Graham Potter said. who described a hairy escape as a traumatic experience. “Thanks to Newport and we wish them the best in terms of their promotional push. We knew they would be tough opponents. “
Newport’s form for a surprise has been one of the most charismatic stories in recent years and they almost got over it when Kevin Ellison sped up the goal with just seconds of overtime to play. A day that began with Ellison, who will turn 42 next month, liquidating the club’s physio calling to say he was overwhelmed by “FA Cup fever” ended with the former Morecambe winger wondering how Dunk managed to block a thunderous half. volley. The game turned into overtime after Webster’s own goal, which was due to Steele messing with a mocking cross, canceled Solly March’s goal in the 90th minute.
Michael Flynn, the mastermind behind Newport who sent Leicester, Leeds and Middlesbrough packing in this competition from Rodney Parade, promised Brighton a bobbly pitch, and within three minutes, Dunk was guilty of not reading the conditions. The Brighton captain did not do a good back pass, but Pádraig Amond, who finished as the top scorer alongside Gabriel Jesus in the FA Cup in 2018-19, unusually altered his lines.
Despite competing for promotion from League Two, the competition’s finances meant Newport would never take this lightly. King saved magnificently to deny Andi Zeqiri his first Brighton goal, but it was ultimately Steele who made the difference. “I’m very grateful for that because it almost cost us in the last minute,” Steele said. “Much of the credit has to go to my goalkeeping coach who had done a lot of research. In the end, I got out of it. “
For different reasons, Brighton, whose dressing room was a marquee behind the visitor’s terrace, was always going to take it seriously, despite it being the first of three away games in six days. Following? Manchester City on Wednesday. Newport will return Saturday to play Salford. “There are players there [for Brighton] in more [money per week] of what some of my players make in two years, ”Flynn said. “It is not by chance or by chance, we work hard and they have put the club back on the map.”
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism