Ex-Hatters trio help Newport shock Boro in the FA Cup

Robbie Willmott celebrates scoring for Newport against Middlesbrough
Robbie Willmott celebrates scoring for Newport against Middlesbrough

Former Hatter Robbie Willmott was on target as League Two Newport County shocked Championship side Middlesbrough in the FA Cup last night, winning their fourth round replay 2-0 at Rodney Parade.

The winger, who made 67 appearances and scored 15 goals for Luton between January 2011 and July 2012 after joining for £50k from Cambridge United, netted the first goal just moments after half time.

Padraig Amond added the second with 23 minutes to go as Newport, who also had ex-Town players Mark O'Brien and Tyreeq Bakinson in their side, with Fraser Franks missing out, set up a fifth round tie at home to Manchester City.

Wilmott, now 28, had been released by County in 2014 and after time with Ebbsfleet, Bishop's Stortford and Chelmsford, quit the game and took a job in his local supermarket.

However, he was re-signed by Newport in July 2017 and told the BBC: "I've had highs and lows, but everyone knows what the club means to me and my bond with supporters.

"I never imagined this, I could not have dreamed it, I took a lot of things for granted, a lot of pros do, you just think you'll keep getting contracts… but unfortunately I was cut.

"When I was stacking shelves I used to think 'what have I done?'

"A lot of people said I should have played at a higher level, but I was thinking 'this is probably me now'. I was ready to play part-time and work.

"I would have looked back on my career and thought 'I've wasted my career'. But I managed to grind and work hard and got myself back in the league."

County manager Michael Flynn, who has recently been linked with the vacancy at Kenilworth Road by SkyBet, added: "He should have played his career higher.

"He is unbelievable really. I've got the best Robbie Willmott now because he is fully focused, not immature anymore and he is a joy to work with."

Former Luton midfielder Darren Currie couldn't lead his non-league Barnet side to an FA Cup upset, as they went down 3-1 at Brentford.