Newport County U18 v Bristol Rovers U18

10.30am  28 January 2017

EFL Youth Alliance, South West
Newport County U18 2 Bristol Rovers U18 2 (att 61)

Once again the ever-shifting world of Youth Alliance venues gave me a new ground to visit, this time at Newport who have swapped one local school for another.

The last time I saw a Newport home game at this level they played at Llanwern High School, but they've recently moved to the nearby Lliswerry High School.

It's just a pitch on a large school playing field, taped off along the one touchline where spectators can stand, but enthusiastic school staff and helpers make visitors feel welcome and provide refreshments for those watching.

It was a great game. Newport went ahead early but Bristol Rovers soon equalised. The home side regained the lead before half time, but it wasn't long into the second half when Rovers levelled again.

Both teams had chances to win the game, but with no more goals it ended in a draw that was a fair result.

Some professional youth games can be sterile affairs, with performances and passing patterns more important than results, but this was a proper competitive match on an old-fashioned muddy football pitch.

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