'Keep calm and carry on': Rowberry remaining positive ahead of Tranmere clash

·3-min read
Newport County AFC manager James Rowberry pictured at a pre-season friendly against Forest Green Rovers in July. Picture: Huw Evans Picture Agency
Newport County AFC manager James Rowberry pictured at a pre-season friendly against Forest Green Rovers in July. Picture: Huw Evans Picture Agency

‘KEEP calm and carry on’ is the message from Newport County AFC manager James Rowberry, who insists his players have the talent and the character to kick-start their season with a home win against Tranmere Rovers tomorrow afternoon.

County have picked up just one point from a possible 12 so far this season, leaving them 23rd in the embryonic League Two table.

And they are desperate to end a run of seven successive defeats at Rodney Parade, which stretches back to March.

But Rowberry believes results have not matched performances so far and that his team will come good and he’s adamant that they won’t change the way they approach matches.

“The only half I’ve been disappointed with is the first half against Salford,” said the Exiles boss. “And we showed character to react from that.

“The lads have shown a real strong character since Tuesday and in the changing room after the game I thought ‘this group knows what it means to play for Newport’.

“They know what the DNA of this football club is, and I know we can put this right. We’re very close to it.

“I don’t think there’s any doubt that we’ll stick together. This football club has always done that,” he added.

“We’re four games in and I’ve got to be positive about it. I live and breathe this every day. I know what it means to people to be successful here and nobody wants it more than me.

“I think that the most important thing is positivity. We will get the results that we deserve because of the work that gets put in by the players and the staff of the football club.

“I’ve no doubt it will come; we’ve just got to keep believing in it, because I do, I really do.”

Rowberry praised the support for his team from the stands during the second-half comeback against Salford and he wants more of the same against Tranmere.

“The fans were amazing on Tuesday, and we feel more disappointed for them than anybody else, really,” he said.

“What’s important is that we stay calm and stick to what we believe in. It’s about calmness and positivity and we need everyone onside.

“I can’t thank the fans enough for Tuesday and I just want them to continue to encourage the players, which I know they will do. It helps us massively.

“It’s early days,” he added. “We’ve assembled a really strong squad and we’ve worked really hard as a group.

“If we were getting battered every week in regards of results and statistics then it’s a totally different ball game.

“But from the evidence I’ve seen, apart from the results, we’re demonstrating what we can achieve and what we can do. It’s just that result, which is important, but we’ve got to do it in what we see as our way.

“We’ve just got to keep doing what we believe in. We’ll stick to our principles and be calm about what we’re trying to do. I have no doubt that we’ll get it right.

“I know we’ll come out the other side of this because we’ve assembled a group that we know can win games and it’s also a group that we know can deal with adversity.”