So with ten games to go, a large number of bookies are paying out on one of the surest results in football. Not David Sullivan announcing a statement about what a saviour he is to West Ham, or Arsene Wenger not seeing another Arsenal favourable decision. We are talking Blue Square South here, and more importantly our friends from over the bridge in Wales – Newport County.
With ten games to go the Exiles, or Ironsides are a massive 24 points clear at the top of the table. Whilst their promotion may not be confirmed for a few weeks as some teams have a few games in hand due to the weather, their sheer dominance of the league needs to be applauded. So here is why they are top of the league:-
- They have won 24 out of 32 games
- They have been top of the league since 5th September 2009
- They have lost a solitary game so far this season – away to Staines back in October
- They have scored 72 goals so far, conceding just 16 meaning their average result this season is 2.25 to 0.5. Their goal difference is currently +52. The next best is +16
- They have scored 4 or more goals in 8 games including 4 times in the last 6 games all of which have been away from home
- They are now averaging over 2,000 at home which is higher than all bar 4 in the Conference and 4 in Football League Division Two
So why have they dominated the league? After all they finished in 10th place last season, Dean Holdsworth made a few acquisitions in the summer and a decent pre-season saw them beat the likes of Stoke City to earn the bookies second favourites tag (behind Dover Athletic who currently languish in 8th place). Back in July he was quoted as saying “We have injected real pace into the squad, we have competition throughout our side and we are feeling good. I’m buzzing about the new season and can’t wait to get started.”
But have they capitalised from the inconsistencies of other teams? Chelmsford started off well but quickly fell away, Dover were top at the start but a 6-2 trashing at Christmas to Lewes seems to have derailed their challenge, whilst Woking have lost too many games to the teams around them. All of which have allowed Newport to pull clear and with no opposition the should be crowned champions by the end of the month and nobody can deny they do not deserve it and they will be a welcome addition to the Conference next season.