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Tom Clarke, Salford CityDefender Tom Clarke was encouraged by Salford City’s performance against League Two leaders Newport County, despite only taking a point.

The experienced defender scored his first goal for The Ammies shortly before half time, powering in a header at the back post from Ash Hunter’s corner.

He had another effort on the volley in the second half, coming in off the right-hand side to connect with a parried shot, but Newport stopper Nick Townsend kept that one out.

It was one of a number of chances Salford had to extend their advantage, and the 32-year-old was positive about The Ammies’ creativity.

“It’s been a long time coming. Ash has been putting some brilliant balls in from set plays and it was just nice to get on the end of one and see it go in. I thought the lads started the game really well and it was nice to go in at half time 1-0.

“I felt we went into the game really well, aggressive and on the front foot, won a lot of second balls like I said on the front foot and we created a lot of chances. 

“I think we’ve created enough chances to win two games there so disappointing that we didn’t score more and see the game out but again we can take confidence from how we played and it’s a quick turnaround now into Saturday.

“Harrogate are a tough team but we can take confidence from today, how we played. A lot more on the front foot and creating chances. I’d be worried if we weren’t creating them but we are, more will come and we’ll put them chances into goals hopefully.”

The key moment of the game came in the second minute of injury time when Brandon Cooper and Mickey Demetriou hit the deck as a cross came into the box. After various discussions the referee awarded a penalty to Newport, harsh given that the two Exiles collided with each other, and Josh Sheehan tucked it past Vaclav Hladky to nick a point.

“From what I’ve seen and a lot of the lads have seen it felt like they went into each other, their own team mates.

“From the position where the ref was I don’t know how he can see anything anyway but he’s give it, we have to move on. We’re disappointed in there that we didn’t win the game and that just shows how far we’ve come.”

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