Report | Newport County 2 Swansea City 0
Swansea City exited the Carabao Cup in the first round as their season started with a disappointing 2-0 defeat at the hands of Newport County.
A brace from Tristan Abrahams in the first half did the damage as Steve Cooper’s side failed to hit their stride at Rodney Parade against the League Two hosts.
Abrahams tapped home from close range in the seventh minute before firing into an empty net after Freddie Woodman’s attempted clearance from a through ball cannoned off the striker and fell kindly into his path.
The Swans went closest through skipper Matt Grimes, who struck the post in the second half, but the hosts had done enough to advance.
The Swans will look to react quickly as they start their Championship campaign next Saturday with a trip to Preston.
Summer signings Jamal Lowe, Morgan Gibbs-White and Freddie Woodman all started as Cooper made just the one change to the team that beat Forest Green Rovers in midweek in their final warm up match, with Matt Grimes coming in to captain the visitors.
The Swans were without a string of international stars, with Wales duo Connor Roberts and Ben Cabango joined by Kosovan Bersant Celina and under-21s contingent Marc Guehi (England) along with Liam Cullen, Brandon Cooper, Jack Evans, Joe Lewis and Oli Cooper (Wales) in serving their nations.
Newport handed a debut to former Swans right-back Liam Shephard following his switch from Forest Green Rovers, while Josh Sheehan also lined up against his former club.
Newport made a rapid start to the game and were rewarded for their early effort as Abrahams tapped home as Ryan Haynes directed a cross back into the box.
Lowe went close to an equaliser soon after as he curled just wide from the edge of the box, but it was the Exiles who were looking the more dangerous.
Woodman had to be alert to swat aside a deflected Haynes effort before they squandered two big opportunities to double their lead. First, Kyle Howkins nodded wide when unmarked before Abrahams was guilty of the same seconds later.
The Swans were finding trouble to get going, and a determined Newport defence got back in numbers to deny Andre after he had waltzed his way into the box.
Then, as the break approached, Newport doubled their lead as a quick break and through ball tempted Woodman from his line. The loanee keeper saw his clearance deflect off Abrahams, and the striker strode forward before sliding the ball home.
The Swans needed a big reaction, and Wayne Routledge tested the hands of keeper Nick Townsend early in the second half, while he did find the net just past the hour mark only to be called offside.
Grimes then saw his curling effort strike the post as the Swans pushed to cut the deficit.
But it was not enough as the League Two side caused a cup upset.
Newport County: Nick Townsend, Ryan Haynes, Joss Labadie (capt, Robbie Willmott, 71), Kyle Howkins, Matty Dolan, Josh Sheehan, Liam Shephard, Tristan Abrahams, Scott Twine (Ryan Taylor, 83), Lewis Collins (Padraig Amond, 71), Mickey Demetriou.
Unused Subs: Tom King, Ashley Baker, Saikou Janneh, Joe Woodiwiss.
Swansea City: Freddie Woodman, Kyle Naughton, Joe Rodon, Jay Fulton, Wayne Routledge (Kristoffer Peterson, 71), Jake Bidwell (Joel Asoro, 71), Matt Grimes (capt), Korey Smith (Yan Dhanda, 71), Morgan Gibbs-White, Jamal Lowe, Andre Ayew.
Unused Subs: Steven Benda, Tivonge Rushesha, Cameron Evans, Daniel Williams.
Referee: Kevin Johnson