Crawley Town head coach Harry Kewell left ‘shell-shocked’ after second half capitulation against Newport County

Crawley Town head coach Harry Kewell. Picture by Steve Robards

Crawley Town head coach Harry Kewell was at a loss for words about Reds’ display in the second half of Tuesday night’s 2-1 defeat at home by Newport County.

Mark Connolly gave his side the lead in the 30th minute with a headed goal, at which point it looked like they were on their way to their second successive victory.

However Newport equalised a few minutes later through a header by Mickey Demetriou.

But instead of Reds fighting back to win, it was the visitors from South Wales who scored in identical fashion with a second headed goal by Demetriou.

Reds rarely threatened after the break, the highlights being when Josh Payne sent a fine free-kick crashing against the post and Josh Yorwerth headed a Jimmy Smith cross off-target.

Kewell said: “I’m a little shell-shocked, a little bit confused because we knew exactly what Newport bring, we knew exactly how Newport score their goals.

“14 goals they’ve scored eight from set-pieces so it’s not hard to find out exactly what they’re strong at.

“You do everything to prepare the players but they’ve got to take responsibility, if they don’t there’s a big problem.

“I’m more disappointed in the way we reacted in the second half; it wasn’t my team.

“We lost willingness to play, to get the ball down, to talk and to create chances properly.”

Kewell was unhappy to see his team resorting to the long-ball game in the second half.

He said: “We fell in the trap of ‘OK let’s just hoof the ball, they hoof the ball, we hoof the ball; it doesn’t get you anywhere in this game.

“They (the players) are all telling me they want to do it the right way and that’s great, but they have got to stand up and take that responsibility on the pitch and do it.

“For the first 35 minutes we played the game properly, we looked good. I don’t know what happened for the rest of the game.

“It was a boring game towards the end; it was like a game of tennis: bang, bang, bang and that’s something I was furious with.

“I’m lost for words; it’s a really tough task now of what and how and who we go about Carlisle.”

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