Sunday 27th August 2017
Welsh Premier Development League (South)
Cardiff Metropolitan 2 Aberystwyth Town U19s 4
Aberystwyth U19’s began their league campaign in the Welsh development league with an encouraging 4-2 win away at Cardiff Metropolitan, writes Assistant Manager Iwan Roberts.
Aberystwyth headed on the long journey to Cardiff with a good pre-season campaign under their belts with the intention of hitting the road running and putting a marker down for the rest of the season. They managed to achieve this with an excellent first half display of quick attacking football, striker Liam Doherty scored two excellent goals particularly the first goal which was a beautiful 25 yard strike which found the top corner of the net leaving the keeper no chance.
On the stroke of half time, the exciting young prospect Tom Evans cut in from the right beating a couple of Cardiff defenders before slotting the ball in the bottom left hand corner.
As expected, Cardiff came hard at Aberystwyth in the opening twenty minutes of the second half and tested the Aberystwyth woodwork on a couple of occasions. The pressure eventually told when Cardiff pulled a goal back, however Aberystwyth still looked dangerous on the break and had numerous chances to score.
Eventually Aber gained that crucial fourth goal from centre half Carwyn Morgan when he slotted a beautiful in swinging ball from a free kick which sealed the game and a satisfying result for Aberystwyth. Cardiff scored a consolation penalty towards the end, bit it was too late for the home side to mount a comeback.
Aberystwyth manager Bari Morgan was delighted with the result, “The lads played very well and we are happy with the result, however there is still plenty to work on, the players are still on a learning curve and they need to keep developing."
Aber’s next league game is at Park Avenue on Friday 1st September 8.00pm kick off, against local rivals Carmarthen
Nathaniel MG Welsh Premier League Cup First Round
Tuesday 29th August
Caersws 0 Aberystwyth Town 2
Injury ravaged Aberystwyth Town scored twice to earn a hard fought win at the Recreation Ground, Caersws last night and guarantee themselves a place in the last sixteen of the League Cup, as goals from Ashley Young (22 minutes) and Jack Rimmer (75 minutes) proved decisive.
With John Owen, Luke Borrelli and Craig Hobson still all injured manager Nev Powell selected a side almost identical to that which started at Cefn last Friday, and on a pleasant evening patience was the watch word for the Black and Greens. Aron Hughes-Jones burst through the right channel and fired over for Caersws early on, but with the visitors dominating possession and taking time on the ball to select the right option the chances were bound to come. Cledan Davies sent in two decent crosses to no avail and then Young picked out livewire Joe Phillips, who cut inside and sent his shot just past the post. Geoff Kellaway then surged through midfield but shot wide but then halfway through the half Ryan Wollacott found Young in the box who had managed to beat the offside trap, and his low drive crept under Luke Evans to give Aber a deserved lead. Town now relaxed and played some nice football: Kellaway was denied by an offside flag, Phillips again glided into the box only to send a shot past the post and a John McKenna volley was deflected to safety. Credit to the hosts however they engineered a late surge before the break with Chris Mullock denying Craig Whitfield with an excellent tackle, followed by a series of corners and a shot from Luke Sherbon which was gathered by Mullock. Kellaway did have another shot over the bar but with Captain Jonny Spittle subbed off with a hamstring pull Aber were probably glad to defend their lead to the half time whistle.
The next goal was likely to prove crucial so Aber again controlled the ball after the break with Malcom Melvin seeing a shot deflected after a nice move. Melvin attempted a cheeky lob soon after which the home keeper gathered, before missing the ball completely with next the move, allowing Declan Carroll to burst across goal to get a shot in which missed by inches. Caersws' Phil Jones volleyed over before normal service was resumed as Young played in Kellaway down the left flank, and Evans pulled off another save. Wollacott was next to pick out Town's flyer Kellaway, but he couldn't convert. Then finally with fifteen minutes to go an excellent ball into the box by Declan Walker was knocked down by Kellaway for sub Jack Rimmer to bring delight to the Aber faithful with a low volley which nestled into Caersws' net and guaranteed victory. There was still time for Carroll and Melvin to rain shots just off target, and at the other end Luke Sherbon was twice denied by strong decisive blocks which epitomised a strong and resolute defensive performance. Carroll agonizingly hit the post and then in injury time Rhydian Davies was fouled in the box, and Sherbon stepped up to take the penalty, which he placed just outside Mullock's right hand post, and Aber had earned a healthy looking result.
While no one at Park Avenue will get carried away by the result, a victory coupled with some goals from open play and a clean sheet were three outcomes which would certainly have been set before the game, and therefore Nev Powell and his Squad deserve plenty of credit for a good job done, against a hard working side who have proved to be Bogeymen for the Black and Greens many times before! Aber now contemplate a ten day break before their JD WPL Campaign burst back into life a week Saturday, 9th September as Cardiff Met visit Park Avenue for a 2.30pm kick off.
Nathaniel MG Welsh Premier League Cup First Round
Tuesday 29th August (ko 8pm)
Caersws v Aberystwyth Town
Aberystwyth Town make the short journey across Plynlimon to visit neighbours Caersws tomorrow evening, hoping for some Cup Cheer after a couple of disappointing JD Welsh Premier League results - and there is plenty of intrigue in the tie with at least three ex Black and Greens likely to be involved for the Bluebirds.
The Seasiders were afflicted by an injury crisis up front last Friday night with Luke Borrelli and John Owen both sidelined before kick off, meaning that Nev Powell's forward line had to change twice or three times on the night. Powell will be hoping for a better outcome tomorrow evening, but it may be that he will have to make full use of his Squad over the 90, or 120 minutes.
Homesters Caersws lie in ninth place in the nascent Cymru Alliance table after a 2-2 draw with Queens Park, a 4-0 defeat to runaway leaders Guilsfield and a 3-1 win at Llandudno Junction on Saturday, in which ex Aber midfielder Rhydian Davies scored. Also playing was legendary Town midfielder Luke Sherbon who left Park Avenue in June after 248 League appearances for the Black and Greens (in three periods with the Club) over fourteen years, and 58 goals. Striker Graham Evans, still involved in Caersws' Management Team and as a Player, also enjoyed some excellent years at Aber, appearing in the Welsh Cup Final of 2009.
Aber's John Owen had a spell at the Recreation Ground earlier in his career and Town will be hoping that he and some of their other injured players will have recovered in time for tomorrow's derby. Caersws' Recreation Ground is listed as postcode SY17 5EN and kick off is at 8pm. The match will be decided on the night with extra time and penalties (using the new ABBA system) if needed, and a good result will be just what the doctor ordered.
JD Welsh Premier League
Friday 25th August
Cefn Druids 2 Aberystwyth Town 0
Two first half goals from Mike Pritchard (22 minutes) and Matthew Eckersley (45+2 minutes) were enough to earn all three points for Cefn Druids in Aber's first North Wales foray of the season, and in truth the Black and Greens could have few complaints about the outcome after an unconvincing display.
Manager Neville Powell's plans were dealt two early blows when Luke Borrelli was unable to play through injury, and John Owen pulled up in the warm up. With striker Craig Hobson also nursing an injury Town started with a new look front three of Cledan Davies, Geoff Kellaway and Joe Phillips, and early signs were encouraging as the visitors enjoyed plenty of pressure. Kellaway worked hard to earn himself a chance down the left but his shot was saved by Michael Jones, Declan Carroll again showed some super tricks on the edge of the area but was tackled and Davies sent a shot just wide. In an engrossing game the Druids looked very dangerous breaking with pace, and Town Centre Back John McKenna denied Ash Ruane with a superb tackle to keep the scores level. Phillips was showing plenty of attacking guile down the right but some excellent crosses came to naught, and then the visitors were hit by a sucker punch when Aaron Simpson's right wing cross found an unmarked Pritchard at the back stick, and his low volley gave Druids the lead. The hosts grew in confidence with Pritchard having a shot blocked, Ruane sending an effort wide of the mark, before the same two players fired over the bar soon afterwards. At the other end Kellaway burst down the left but was again denied by Jones and Davies headed Phillips' excellent cross wide, and once Chris Mullock had saved Jordan Barrow's grass tickler the half seemed done. Alas, in the depths of injury time Neil Ashton's corner landed straight on the head of the unmarked Eckersley and his headed goal meant that Aber had a real mountain to climb at the break.
The second half was a tamer affair with Town looking for inspiration. Davies' ball in drew an acrobatic effort from Phillips which went over the bar, Declan Walker sent a free kick over the bar and a series of free kicks came to nothing thanks to some resolute home defending. At the other end Pritchard twice went close down the left side, Ruane saw a shot blocked and Fisnik Hajdari's free kick was glanced wide for a corner. Davies for Aber had one free kick blocked, before sending in an excellent cross from the right which just eluded sub Hobson, and it was clear that it just wasn't going to be Aber's night, and with the scoreline ending at 2-0 the referee's final whistle confirmed Druids' first win of the season.
The Black and Greens will be keen to start turning pressure into goals so as to give the new season a boost, and they have a chance to do so on Tuesday evening in the Nathaniel MG League Cup when they visit Cymru Alliance neighbours Caersws for a First Round tie at the Recreation Ground with an 8pm kick off. Better luck next time.
Would you like to play for Aberystwyth Town Ladies this season? If so please speak to one of our coaches Kevin Jenkins, Ray Hughes or Steven Brookes, or you can contact the team on Facebook, Twitter or email (details below).
Friday 25th August (ko 8pm)
JD Welsh Premier League
Cefn Druids v Aberystwyth Town
Aberystwyth Town look to kick start their season with a Friday evening foray to the Wrexham area in 48 hours time, to face Cefn Druids for Matchday 3 of the JD Welsh Premier League.
Last week's home kick off ended up as a bit of damp squib for Neville Powell's men, as two second half goals earned all three points for visitors Llandudno, following on from an encouraging 1-1 draw at Barry Town the previous week.
Powell however wants more from his team and made no bones about it in conversation with Aber Town's Youtube Channel this week: “We know we can do better than that. We’ve got some very disappointed players in the dressing room. I’m very disappointed. I know conditions were bad but it was the same for both sides. We always knew it was going to be difficult and whoever got the first goal would go onto win the game”.
Friday's opponents Cefn Druids find themselves just below Town in the nascent JD Welsh Premier League, having lost 0-3 at home to Cardiff Met before taking a point at Newtown thanks to Ash Ruane's penalty last Friday night.
Druids held the upper hand over Aber last season and finished above the Black and Greens after 2-1 and 1-0 wins, and a 0-0 draw at Park Avenue in March. Town supporters will prefer to recall Aber's 3-0 win at the Rock back in December 2016, and another win on Friday night would be a huge boost to the Black and Greens before the League takes a two week break after Matchday 3.
Powell says: “We’ve got to make sure we work hard and be prepared for what we’ve got to come this week against Druids. They’re a big, strong, physical side so we’ve got to do well there.”
Kick off at the Rock will be at 8pm, and Cefn Druids' ground address is listed as The Rock, Rock Rd, Cefn-mawr, Wrexham, LL14 3YF. The Green Army is being called out again: don't turn your back on the Black and Greens as they head to Cefn!