UWCH CYNGHRAIR CYMRU WELSH PREMIER LEAGUE
Adroddiadau / Reports
2008 - 2009
Tachwedd / November
29.11.08 CARMARTHEN TOWN 1 PRESTATYN TOWN 0
And having been reduced to ten men, following the dismissal of David Hayes just after the hour, Prestatyn continued to be resilient with final touches from defenders and a packed penalty area denying Town any addition to the score.
Town coach Mark Aizlewood described the win. “Yes it was hard work in making the three points safe but I thought the players were excellent. It was as comprehensive a 1-0 victory as you could possibly get. I thought we dominated them physically throughout and we created an enormous amount of opportunities really.
With defender Mark Dodds failing a pre-game fitness test manager Deryn Brace retained the same starting line-up that secured the win at NEWI Cefn Druids last week.
And Town had a few nervous moments when Nathan Cotterrall brought down Russ Jones on the edge of the box before finally clearing the danger from the resulting set piece.
Town should have broken the deadlock on the half hour. Following a corner Jamal Easter, Tim Hicks and Sacha Walters all had efforts denied with Richard Hughes eventually blasting over, relieving the pressure for the visitors.
Thomas replaced Hicks just before the hour and Prestatyn created their best chance when Gibson fired wide of the mark after Evans had broken through and set his manager free on goal with only the keeper to beat.
Stuart Roberts put defender Jack Lewis under pressure to win the ball on the flank. Having taken the ball to the bye-line his low, driven cross saw Thomas get between the defenders to strike what proved to be a well taken winner.
Nicky Palmer’s first League goal of the season proved to be Old Gold’s match winner when his injury time strike against NEWI Cefn Druids gave Town all three points following a closely contested encounter. Palmer’s strike, with literally the last kick of the game, came after Mark Powell’s 85th. minute equaliser had seemingly given the Druids a valuable share of the points.
With the influential Mark Dodds unavailable through injury Lee Hudgell started on the wing and Sacha Walters dropped into the full back berth to enable Richard Hughes to partner Neil Smothers in the middle of the Town defence. Youngster Ben Morris was recalled to the bench.
Carmarthen Town started in spectacular fashion. Paul Fowler’s first minute drive crashed against the post before Druids keeper Carl Edwards made a fine save from Lee Hudgell’s rebound follow-up. Edwards was in action again a minute later this time to deny Stuart Roberts.
Town keeper Neil Thomas had to be sharp off his line in the 8th minute to save at the feet of Joe Feeney as the home side pressed for the first time. But it was the visiting side which looked the most threatening and Jamal Easter could have put Town ahead but lacked composure with his finish.
Kevin Holsgrove proved to be quite a handful down the right for the 'Ancients' and Lee Jones’ fierce half volley was tipped over by Thomas.
Just before the break Sacha Walters, pushing forward from his unfamiliar right back role, was allowed to cut inside but with Druids keeper in miserly mood the game remained goalless at the break.
Following the resumption the hosts exerted considerable pressure. In the absence of both Dodds and Liam Hancock, Smothers marshalled his forces expertly and with Hughes also in commanding form Town weathered the storm.
Palmer’s effort on the hour sounded a warning to the hosts and five minutes later Easter broke the deadlock. A long ball down the middle was misjudged by Dan Barnett. With Edwards exposed the predatory Easter raced into the gap to pounce on the loose ball before gliding past both defender and keeper and sliding his effort into the open net from a difficult angle.
Morris provided a fresh pair of legs when he replaced Hudgell and proved an useful outlet on the left of Town’s midfield. But it was Town's custodian Thomas who maintained the Old Gold’s advantage when he tipped Holsgrove’s header brilliantly over the bar on the eighty-minute mark.
Unfortunately Thomas could do little about the Ancients’ equaliser when it materialised five minutes later. A long throw into the box was only headed clear to the edge of the box where right back Mike Powell connected with a cracking low volley that flew past the diving keeper into the corner of the net.
Town immediately looked for a winner and Tim Hicks was unfortunate to see his effort clear the bar. But the visitors were not to be denied.
Nathan Cotterrall won possession near the edge of his own box and rifled a 50 yard pass to the fast moving Danny Thomas, on as substitute for Easter. Thomas chased down and controlled the ball on the edge of the bye line before his pulled back ball picked out Palmer on the edge of the box for the tall midfielder to squeeze his first time effort between Edwards and the post and break the for a late, late winner.
Manager Deryn Brace was pleased with what was a hard earned result.
“Yes it was an even 90 minutes. In truth the game could have gone either way and maybe it was harsh anyone won it. Fortunately for us we were the team that snatched it”.
“You kind of feel for the Druids because they put everything into it, but so did we. We kept going to the very last kick and it was great for Nicky Palmer to come up with what was a fantastic winner”.
Reflecting on the win Brace added, “After the disappointment of the performance against Welshpool and the defeat to TNS and the way it happened it was always important that we didn’t lose this game. And though I never felt that we were going to lose it I didn’t think at times we had quite enough to go on and win it”.
“What it does do is it sets us up because probably for the first time we had a bit of luck with the timing of the second goal and the win, a bit of luck that the majority of the results went our way and now hopefully we’ve turned a corner and we can move on and win a few more games to keep the pressure on the top guns.”
Having had to readjust his defensive resources Brace was pleased that both his central defenders will soon be back in action.
“Liam Hancock is fit and available and I expect Doddsy to be fit by the weekend. By the time of the Prestatyn game we should have a full squad to pick from”.
Reluctant to single anyone out Brace did feel that Sacha Walters deserved some recognition for his contribution in what was an unfamiliar role.
“It was a real team performance and its hard to single anybody out but I don’t think the boys would mind me singling out Sacha Walters who slotted in at right back. He got on with the job great and he’s in fine form at the moment, so yes its nice to give him a little bit of recognition because sometimes it goes unnoticed”.
Druids: Edwards, Powell, Marriott, Edgar, Barnett, Jones, Holsgrove, Stewart, Feeney (Price 70'), Evans, Thompson Subs not used: Rowlands, Phillips, Mazzarella.
Town: N Thomas, Hughes, Easter (D Thomas 83'), Palmer, Smothers, Hudgell (Morris 66'), Roberts, Hicks, Fowler, Walters, Cotterrall. Sub not used: Brace. Attendance : 56 Referee : Andrew Harms
15.11.08 CARMARTHEN TOWN 2 THE NEW SAINTS 3
Having secured emphatic wins at Pwllheli and Aberystwyth, Town looked to record their third away win of the week at Welshpool on Saturday. But Town's miserable record at Maes Y Dre continued with two first half goals condemning the Richmond Park outfit to another frustrating day at the Mid Wales venue.
An early opener gave the hosts the advantage when Ross Stephens' cross to the back post was hit against the base of the post by Steve Rogers. But the ball rebounded across the goal for Andy Davies to net from close in on seven minutes.
Town had a golden opportunity to level two minutes later. Neil Thomas' long clearance was headed on by Lee Hudgell to Tim Hicks who was brought down by keeper Danny Jones. But the keeper made amends getting enough on Paul Fowler's spot kick to send it against the post and to safety.
Richard Harris was a constant thorn in Town's side as the visitors led a charmed existence with Rogers, Stephens and Paul Roberts all coming close for the hosts but when Thomas' mistimed his punched clearance of Stephens' corner just after the half hour the ball fell fortunately for Harris who netted at the back post to give the Mid Wales Lilywhites a comfortable half time lead.
Playing down the slope Town made far more of an impact after the break but frustratingly failed to break through despite some clear cut chances. Sacha Walters' long range effort was held by Jones and when Fowler's diagonal cross found Danny Thomas the sub's driven shot was saved by the woodwork just after the hour.
Minutes later the woodwork again saved the hosts blushes. Thomas was brought down on the edge of the area and Nathan Cotterrall's well struck free kick crashed against the crossbar with the keeper well beaten. With time running out Town continued to press and a melee in the Welshpool goalmouth saw the ball run to Walters who somehow put the ball wide of the target as the hosts hung on to their first half advantage to record their first home win of the season.
A disappointing result especially following Town's sparkling mid week form. Reflecting on the outcome coach Mark Aizlewood felt that the result was not the worst result but it was worrying. “I felt that in the three games since we’ve changed the tactics the players have been absolutely fantastic. When we were beaten at Rhyl I couldn’t have any questions of the players because they had done what we asked them to do and yet we lost the game. But you have to take that on the chin as a coach or manager”.
“Today they forgot to do the very basics of the game that is to run with an opponent, tackle an opponent, mark an opponent., They thought they had an excuse of hiding behind the tactic we’ve asked them to do”.
“But it was nothing to do with that. The reason was we didn't win enough second ball, we didn't win enough headers we didn't win enough tackles and quite simply the opposition run further than us. It sounds very simplistic but that was the reason we had a very poor first half”.
"The penalty miss had no effect on the result whatsoever. Yes it would have been nice to get back into the game at 1-1 but they were battering us at that stage anyway."
“We’ve had some home truths with the players and now we move on. One thing is for sure we can’t do anything about that result. Now we look forward to our next challenge TNS”.
Welshpool: Jones, Davies, Dowridge, Hughes, Edwards, Keegan, Davies, Harris, Rogers (Thomas 62'), Stephens, Roberts (Williams 85'). Sub not used: Powell.
Town: N Thomas, Hughes, Hudgell, Palmer, Smothers, Dodds (Brace 87'), Roberts (D Thomas 55'), Hicks (Easter 73'), Fowler, Walters, Cotterrall. Attendance: 125 Referee: Simon Jones
Looking to repeat last season's win and in the process be the first side to win at Park Avenue this season Town produced a comprehensive performance to overpower the Seasiders and leapfrog into sixth position.
Coach Mark Aizlewood said, “Irrespective of the sending off, I thought it was as comprehensive an away win as I have seen in the Welsh Premier League since I have been at the club. I thought we thoroughly deserved the three points".
With an unchanged starting line-up E H Factors & Clothing sponsored Town made the breakthrough early. Lee Hudgell's short corner saw Stuart Roberts send in a curling cross for Tim Hicks to head home unopposed on seven minutes.
Chris Venables and Geoff Kellaway played some neat combinations for the hosts and when Venables got his head to Morgan's free kick it took a great one-hander from Neil Thomas to deny the mid-fielder. Sion Evans sent a rasping effort across the face of Town's goal but Hicks, Hudgell and Walters continued to probe the Aber back line with sharp breaks.
With the game ebbing and flowing Roberts broke clear for Town but Sacha Walters headed wide and minutes later Hicks couldn’t quite finish Hudgell’s claim off a high ball. In between Kellaway and Luke Sherbon both put angled shots across the face of Town's goal. But in a competitive and enthralling game Morgan saw red for a two footed challenge right on the stroke of half time.
Following the break Roberts remained influential for Town with his probing runs. But Graham Evans spurned a golden opportunity to draw the hosts level when Mark Dodds slipped and the front man broke clear only to lose out in a on-on-one with Thomas who was looking to maintain his third consecutive clean sheet. To add to Aber's woes the experienced striker then limped off to be replaced by Andy Evans.
Town exerted considerable control but without an end product as Dave Roberts did well to deny Hudgell's effort following Nathan Cotterrall's quickly taken free kick. But with the pressure mounting Aber failed to clear Town's short corner and with the ball finally falling to Fowler his shot through a crowded box bobbled off the diving keeper into the net to give Town some breathing space just after the hour.
Walters' sent a stinging free kick inches wide of the mark before Neil Thomas did well to block Aneurin Thomas' header at point blank range to maintain Town's advantage. Jamal Easter replaced Hudgell with a quarter of the game remaining and his first touch almost added to the tally from Roberts' scooped cross but he somehow spurned an open net.
With the clock winding down a great individual effort from Walters set the seal on Town's satisfying win. Having been sent on his way by Richard Hughes the wingman outpaced the static cover and cut inside to finish from a tight angle to but an end to the Seasiders' undefeated run.
Manager Deryn Brace was delighted. “What pleased me was the work ethic amongst everyone. The players took it upon themselves it was a huge challenge. Aberystwyth hadn’t been defeated this season and we were coming off the back of two decent wins. I thought we put in an all round solid performance. It was one of the most enjoyable games to have watched from the sideline. The game had everything and over the ninety minutes I thought we were by far the better side.
Aberystwyth: Roberts, James, Hughes, Thomas, Edwards, S Evans ( Bowen 70'), Venables, Morgan, G Evans (A Evans 54'), Sherbon, Kellaway Subs not used: Reynolds, Bradshaw (Y), Hartnell (Y).
Town: N Thomas, Hughes, Hudgell ( Easter 72'), Palmer, Smothers, Dodds, Walters, Hicks (D Thomas 88'), Fowler, Roberts, Cotterall Sub not used: Brace Referee: Brian James
01.11.08 PWLLHELI FC 0 CARMARTHEN TOWN 6 (WC Round 3)