JD Cymru Premier
Saturday 23rd April
Aberystwyth Town 1 Connah’s Quay Nomads 1
Sixteen year old Cameron Allen nodded Aber into an eighth placed Cymru Premier finish with a cool 76th minute equaliser, as the Black and Greens held last season’s Champions Connah's Quay, who had gone ahead through Craig Curran (39 minutes), to a 1-1 draw. The point was not enough to take Town into the end of season Play Offs but did ensure a very respectable finish in one of the most competitive Play Off Conferences in Cymru Prem history.
Aber went into the game missing talismanic Steff Davies (injured) and Jamie Veale (suspended), with Jack Rimmer and Alex Darlington returning to the starting XI, but the visitors started with most of the possession and a series of corners, with Curran firing the first chance over. Paulo Mendes headed over for Nomads but with Louis Bradford in commanding form opportunities were few and far between. At the other end Harry Franklin made a great interception, ran in on goal and swivelled, only to slip at the vital moment, unlucky. Ryan Harrington was next to blaze over for Connah’s Quay, then at the other end Matty Jones’ deep ball in was headed back by Lee Jenkins and Rhys Davies had his effort blocked from 5 yards. Franklin made another great run before having a shot blocked, and Jack Thorn’s tap in was disallowed for offside, but then before the break John Ufuah’s shot was saved by Gregor Zabret, and Curran snaffled up the rebound to open the scoring. Aeron Edwards headed wide for Quay and they held on for a slightly fortunate lead in a game of few clear cut chances.
Into the second half the visitors again held a lot of possession without creating too many chances of note. Josh Williams did have a long range effort deflected for a corner, and Zabret made a brilliant save to deny Mendes from close range but as young Cameron Allen came on the hosts were looking for a hero with twenty minutes to go. Jack Rimmer sent in a free kick which Bradford glanced wide, and then with barely fifteen minutes left, the dangerous Ben Wynne gathered the ball in his own half, outpaced his marker on a 50 yard run and sent in yet another peach of a cross, which found Allen in space, and the 33 goal Development League star made no mistake, finding the far corner with a deft flick. This incidentally was Wynne’s fourth assist in four matches, with Aber’s transfer deadline day signing making a name for himself on the Ceredigion Coast. Matty Jones sent in a dangerous free kick which Oliver Byrne gathered on the line, then Zabret had to be alert to deny Harrington. Byrne then gathered Bradford’s chip and sub Jamie Insall sent a shot spinning past the post. Some characteristically strong and resolute defending saw Aber through, and Wynne sent in one final thrilling cross, but it evaded everyone in Black and Green, and then game ended fair and square as a 1-1 draw.
While some Aber supporters might be disappointed to miss out on the end of season Play Offs, the bigger picture is that 40 points and an eighth placed finish is a big achievement for Antonio Corbisiero and his young side, who have punched above their weight this season, and achieved some big scalps throughout. Brighter days lay ahead and after earning 14 points from their final seven League games the Seasiders can look forward to 2022/23 season with confidence. The future is bright, the future is Black and Green!
Photo: Colin Ewart
Aberystwyth Town vs Connahs Quay Nomads
JD Cymru Premier
Saturday 23rd April
A final day showdown awaits Aberystwyth Town this Saturday and a four-way battle for 7th position and a place in the end of season playoffs will ensue as Connahs Quay Nomads visit Aberystwyth University Park Avenue, whilst Haverfordwest County and Cardiff Met will battle it out at Bridge Meadow.
There are a few permutations in place going into this final round of matches. If Aber are victorious against ConnahsQuay and Met do not take all three points, then Antonio Corbisiero’s side will finish 7th and qualify for the playoffs, which this season are for a place in next seasons Scottish League Cup. There is also a scenario which could see Aber qualify if both teams win, but the Black & Greens would have to better Met’s winning margin by 3 goals or more.
It is a difficult task that awaits for the Black & Greens, as Craig Harrison’s Nomads have not lost a league game since January, a run which now stretches to 11 matches. However, Aber have shown many times this season that they can be a match for any team in this league, having already beaten League Champions The New Saints at Park Avenue this season.
The previous meeting between the two sides was a close affair back on April 1st, decided by a Callum Morris penalty. Many observers could have mistaken referee Huw Jones’ decision to award the penalty for an April Fool’s Day wind up, given that the foul was committed well outside the box, but unfortunately this was not the case and Aber left Deeside empty handed despite a performance which deserved at least a point.
Both Phase 1 encounters also ended in 1-0 victories for Nomads, despite second half onslaughts from Aber on both occasions.
Saturday’s fixture will also see ATFC’s Top League Goalscorer for 2021/22 decided, with Harry Franklin and Sam Phillips both currently tied on 5 goals each. With Louis Bradford, Steff Davies, Matthew Jones and John Owen all on 4 goals a piece and Lee Jenkins, Jamie Veale and Ben Wynne on 3, the accolade is still anyone’s to win!
Tickets for this massive match are priced at £7 for Adults, £4 for Concessions & Under 16’s are free. Aber have a real chance to extend their season and a take a shot at Playoff glory, which will be just rewards for the players fantastic efforts this season. For the last time in 2021/22 (in the regular league season at least!) Green Army, assemble!
JD Cymru Premier
Monday 18th April
Barry Town 0 Aberystwyth Town 1
A brilliant second minute diving header from Steff Davies, allied to an outstanding defensive display won a crucial game for the Black and Greens away to Barry yesterday afternoon, as Jordan Cotterill saw red for the hosts for two yellow cards near the end. The three points keeps Aber right in the running for a Scottish League Cup Play Off place with one round of Cymru Premier matches to go, and ensures the Club's survival at Cymru Premier level for the thirtieth consecutive season!
The magnitude of the game was magnified by its late movement for the TV Schedules, and a family fun day centred around a Black and Green bouncy castle, as well as some brilliant support for both sides, ensured a big crowd of 712 and a Cup Final atmosphere. The unchanged Black and Greens, needing a point to ensure their Cymru Premier status would have wanted a big start and that is what they got. In the third minutes Jamie Veale picked out Ben Wynne down on the right and his cross fell beautifully for Steff Davies to score a goal with a diving header which has already earned legendary status. On come Aber and Davies volleyed over soon after, again fed by Wynne, before Matty Jones crossed for Wynne to head goalbound – but Mike Lewis was equal to it. Then Aber had an incredible let off when Jordan Cotterill found himself one on one with Gregor Zabret in Aber’s goal – but his effort rebounded into Zabret’s hands, to huge relief among Aber Town’s super singing Sole Crew. Rhys Abruzzese volleyed a great chance just over but then back came Aber again as Steff Davies crossed for Harry Franklin to head wide. Matty Jones was then so close to repeating the free kick trick he has twice played on Barry this season – but the ball dropped inches wide of the goal – and back came the hosts with a series of corners which produced chances for Luke Cooper (blocked) and another attempt headed just wide. The effervescent Ben Wynne was a constant threat down the right wing and with Steff Davies and Jon Owen also causing havoc up front the visitors looked capable of a second – however Kayne McLaggon stung the palms of Zabret with a wicked curling shot which the keeper did brilliantly to shovel wide. Veale threatened at the other end with a free kick but Aber got to half time a goal to the good and forty five minutes from a huge result.
Aber started the second half on the front foot with Steff Davies crossing for Franklin, but Town’s main man from Hereford couldn’t quite convert. Ben Wynne then had a shot parried by Lewis, and Franklin saw a low drive blocked by a great diving tackle, as did Louis Bradford minutes later with the hosts in danger of being put out of their misery. Veale then nearly sealed a fantastic move, but his volley went over the top, and Bradford was next to drive over. Franklin then tested Lewis, before Wynne volleyed over with Aber thoroughly on top. Barry then made a quadruple substitution and with the sun setting on the Linnets’ hopes they did at last enjoy a period pf pressure from set pieces, only to find an Aber back four defending like Trojans, with Rhys Davies and Lee Jenkins commanding at centre back. Sub Marcus Day tested Zabret with a lob, and then with only two minutes remaining Cotterill received a second yellow for a ridiculous dive and the game was almost up. Five minutes of injury time were added, and once two headers had flashed past Zabret’s far post, the game was up and Nick Pratt’s final whistle ensured huge celebrations both off and on the pitch, with both Players and Supporters showing mutual admiration for a job well done and a crucial win in a momentous game.
Those of a Black and Green persuasion celebrated late into the night but at the same time Aberystwyth Town FC sincerely commiserates with Barry Town United – a fantastic Club who for this season at least are now consigned to the bottom two, but who belong back in our National League very soon. Aber’s win leaves them in eighth place in the Cymru Prem, level with Cardiff Met on 39 points, and a win at home to Connah’s Quay Nomads on Saturday in the last game on the season, allied to a draw or defeat for the Met, would guarantee a Play Off Place for the Black and Greens for the first time in seven years. Kick off is at 12.45pm – you wouldn’t want to miss out!
Barry Town United vs Aberystwyth Town
JD Cymru Premier
Monday 18th April
5.15pm KO – Live on S4C Sgorio
The JD Cymru Premier has reached its penultimate round of matches and ATFC still have it all to play for!
A victory in South Wales against Barry Town United will ensure that Antonio Corbisiero’s side will go into Saturday’s final match of the season against Connahs Quay Nomads with a huge chance of securing 7th position and a place in the end of season playoffs.
Friday’s victory over Cefn Druids was the perfect preparation for these two massive matches as ATFC secured their biggest league win of the season so far and second biggest in all competitions – eclipsed only by September’s 9-0 Welsh Cup Victory over Aber Valley.
With two victories and two clean sheets from the last three games, and three victories from the last five games, Aber go into this crucial period in good form and the team will be high on confidence ahead of this meeting with Gavin Chesterfield’s side.
Barry Town United have had a disappointing season by their recent standards and find themselves in 11th place going into this game. They registered only one win between the end of November and start of April but have secured two important victories over the last couple of weeks. Their most recent result was a 2-0 defeat at Haverfordwest County on Good Friday.
Despite their struggles this season, Barry will always be dangerous opposition, particularly when Kayne McLaggon is in the team. With 14 goals so far this season, Kayne currently sits 4th in the league’s Top Scorer chart. Jordan Cotterill and Clayton Green have added 4 goals each and with players with the quality of Marcus Day and Theo Wharton in the squad also, Aber will have to be at their best to secure these vital three points.
This game has been selected for live coverage on S4C’s Sgorio programme, with the game available on TV and online. The programme starts at 5pm, with kick-off at 5.15pm. In addition, coverage will also be available on our Twitter platform @AberystwythTown as always.
Saturday’s final league match of the season also kicks off at a different time to usual. The match against Connahs Quay Nomads will begin at 12.45pm in accordance with final day protocol, which sees all matches kick-off at the same time.
Jenner Park is situated on Barry Road and the postcode for the stadium is CF62 9BG. There is no parking for visiting supporters at the stadium, but there is plenty of street parking available in the local area. A large away following is anticipated for this exciting tie as Aber continue the push for 7th place. You really don’t want to miss this one!!
JD Cymru Premier
Friday 15th April
Aberystwyth Town 6 Cefn Druids 0
Aberystwyth Town continued their fine form, turning Good Friday into a Great Friday at Park Avenue with a convincing 6-0 victory over luckless Cefn Druids. Lee Jenkins opened the scoring for the second Saturday running on 29 minutes, and after visiting keeper Mike Jones was sent off, Steff Davies doubled the lead seven minutes later. Louis Bradford headed home two minutes into injury time, then two minutes after the break John Owen made it four with a stunner. Two minutes after that Davies headed home his second, and finally Alex Darlington bagged Aber’s sixth goal a minute before time.
This was a must win game for different reasons and on a pleasant day Druids’ young side were under pressure from the start. Davies sent a flying header over the bar from Matty Jones’ cross, Owen had a shot blocked and Harry Franklin tapped wide. Bradford headed wide from Jamie Veale’s corner and Ben Wynne was next to go close with a volley. Owen hit the post with a low shot, and in an increasingly frustrating watch for home supporters Franklin headed wide from Matty Jones’ cross. Then finally a Jones corner out on the right was flicked home by Jenkins, and things were looking up. Minutes later Franklin burst through and Cefn keeper Mike Jones prevented a definite goal by catching the ball outside the area – and was sent off. From the resultant free kick Matty Jones hit the post and Davies pounced to snaffle another crucial goal for the Black and Greens. Owen, Franklin and Matty Jones all went close, then in injury time came a third assist for Matty Jones, whose cross was back headed into the net by Bradford, to cap a thoroughly dominant performance.
The hosts made a great start to the second half as Bradford went on a swashbuckling run down the right, and his cross feel nicely for Owen to audaciously back heel into the net, for one of Park Avenue’s more precocious goals – definitely one to watch again on Sgorio! Ben Wynne then sent in a great cross which Davies headed home, and the game was done. Franklin hit the side netting, and Davies headed wide before Antonio Corbisiero made five substitutions to rotate his squad, but Aber just kept on coming. Darlington had a volley cleared and Jack Thorn volleyed over; Wynne fired over from Jamie Jones’ cross and stand in keeper Mitch Williams came out well to deny Owain Jones, and saved from Sam Phillips next. Rhys Davies’ header was deflected for a corner, then at the other end sub Osian Williams had Cefn’s first attempt on target, but Gregor Zabret made a comfortable save. Just before the end Wynne’s long throw fell for Darlington to pounce and score high up into the net, and there was still time for Phillips to go close with a deep cross and Owen Orford to test Williams again, and Aber’s day of sixy football was done.
This was a very dominant performance by the Black and Greens at a perfect time in the season, and the goals lifted Town above Cardiff Met into eighth place on goal difference in the Cymru Premier table, two points short of a Scottish League Play Off place with two games to go. The Odyssey continues on Monday tea time at Jenner Park, Barry (ko 5.15pm). Don’t miss it!
Aberystwyth Town FC are saddened to learn of the passing of Joan Pugh-Jones - widow to Club Stalwart Bryan Pugh-Jones and grandmother to current Seasiders Mathew and Jamie Jones.
Joan was a familiar face at Park Avenue over several decades and a much-loved member of the community known for her warm and endearing nature. She will be greatly missed by all who enjoyed her company over many years.
The club sends their heartfelt condolences to Sharon, Richie, Mathew, Jamie and the wider family for their loss - flags will be flown at half-mast for this afternoon's game at Park Avenue in Joan's memory.