Thank God we have him – Graham Coughlan hails Newport match-winner Omar Bogle
Graham Coughlan hailed Omar Bogle as one of the best strikers in League Two after the hitman’s 15th goal of the campaign steered Newport to a 2-1 win at Gillingham.
Cameron Norman’s header put Newport ahead in the ninth minute, only for a Tom Nichols’ penalty to haul Gillingham level by half-time of a scrappy contest.
Bogle was a threat all afternoon and his emphatic finish from close range just 12 minutes from time sealed the points for Newport, and moved the 29-year-old up to joint fifth in the division’s goalscoring charts.
“Thank God we have him,” Coughlan said.
“He really leads the line well and he’s been different class since I came through the door.
“I think he’s right up there with the best strikers in the league – not only as a target man, but he’s also a brilliant person to have in the dressing room.
“We should enjoy today, as football doesn’t give you too much time to do that. You’re always thinking about the next training session, game and opponent.
“I’ll give the lads a couple of days off now as April has been really tough for us. We’ve played nearly seven or eight games in 29 days, yet we delivered a really strong performance today.
“I thought our tactics today were spot on – we knew their strengths, we knew we had to nullify them, and it took a really big job to do that.”
The result lifts Newport to 14th in the table, and they could finish as high as 10th if they beat Crewe and results go for them on the final day next week.
Gillingham’s 19th defeat of the season leaves them in 18th and manager Neil Harris did not sugarcoat his thoughts after a disappointing performance.
“Look, the lads have been brilliant in the second half of the season, but it was a flat performance,” he said.
“I thought we were slightly the better team in the first half, their chances really only came through set-pieces. In the second half I made a sub and we got worse.
“We didn’t react to that change. I learned loads about the group today, but that’s as far as I’ll go about not being happy.
“It’s been a long season for everybody, and it felt like we let out a sigh of relief today, delivering a sub-par display.
“The fans stuck with us today, but it wasn’t a good performance. We never really got into top gear and that’s probably the worse we’ve been in the second half of a home game since January.
“The lads know I want a reaction next week – we’ll be at it against Salford. We don’t want to finish the season with that level of performance.”