Newport County U18 v Bristol Rovers U18

10.30am  2 December 2017

EFL Youth Alliance, South West
Newport County U18 2 Bristol Rovers U18 4 (att 45)

I watched this same fixture in January, at County's current first choice youth team venue of Lliswerry High School, but this season's encounter caught my eye when I spotted it was being played on 'pitch two' at Dragon Park.

Dragon Park, in Newport, is Wales' National Football Development Centre, a bit like a mini version of the FA's St George's Park. I visited the main pitch in 2015 for an under 17 international, but the second pitch is some distance away from the main arena.

It's just an enclosed grass pitch, adjacent to a 3G ground that was hosting Newport v Bristol Rovers at under 16 level. While it's a more enclosed ground than the usual pitch at Lliswerry High School, the down side for spectators is having to watching from outside the fence that surrounds the pitch.

Peering through a fence isn't a great way to watch football, but at least it was an entertaining game. Newport took an early lead but it was soon wiped out and the first half ended 1-1.

Rovers began the second period in clinical fashion, scoring three times in the space of 10 minutes early in the half. Newport pulled a goal back to keep things interesting, but they couldn't manage a third and the visitors held on to win.

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