ANDOVER Town latest outing in the Wessex League Division One saw them lose 2-0 to visiting Newport from the Isle of Wight.

Town without their two leading goal scorers included new signing Mark Keogh in defence and gave Lewis Wakeford an opportunity to start the game as the number 11 and he turned in very impressive performance.

Despite the result Andover were clearly the better team demonstrating that the hard work to develop a strong squad rather than just a strong team is paying off.

Although goals were not forthcoming the midfield play has improved and was the best so far this season.

Recent games have seen Andover trail from the outset and this happened again on Saturday as Darren Powell scored from close range following a free-kick.

Unlike previous games Andover did not roll over and concede again straight away.

In fact, only a minute later, Ben Emans went close.

Liam Triggs had a couple of chances for Newport. One going over the crossbar and another deflected out by Matt Williams.

On 19 minutes, Owen Trapnell' free-kick found Wakeford and his shoot was deflected out for a corner.

Soon after the same player had another chance this time from Nickoy Pinnock’s cross, which Ryan Hall saved.

Cole Oates then headed wide for Andover and then forced Hall into another save.

Powell Ihunan-ya then fired a free-kick just over the bar from a free-kick just outside the area.

After the break, Town’s Brendan Holmes had the first chance, but his shot crashed into the fence behind the goal.

Newport were not causing any damage to the sharpened-up Andover midfield.

Andover continued to attack with Oates and Holmes nearly drawing their team level in the 70th minute.

Unfortunately, the visitors then added a second goal from a corner as Powell grabbed his second of the game.

Despite being two down Andover kept looking for goals and both substitutes Shaquille Gwengwe and Waledin Ahmed were involved in a lengthy move which also included Sam Mills and ended with Holmes just missing the head of Gwengwe as the ball crossed temptingly in front of goal.

Equally, Tasker played his part in keeping the points dream alive, as a trio of late corners for the away side kept him busy.

Right up until the last minute Andover were battling for the goals and score which would have better reflected the match.

Despite the results Andover have suffered at the start of this season their continued enthusiasm is a delight to watch on the pitch.

Their position in the table is no reflection of the spirit and enormous improvement they have shown in such a short time playing as a squad together.

If they continue on this journey, with the same determination as they have now, not only will they start to move up the rankings but their style of play will draw in more spectators.

Town are in action tonight at home to US Portsmouth.