Monday 30th December
Aberystwyth Town 1 Newtown 2
Aberystwyth Town endured injury time heartbreak at Park Avenue in last night’s last home game of 2019, as George Harry’s 94th minute header condemned them to defeat in a match they truly deserved to draw, following a super second half comeback. Lifumpa Mwandwe gave the visitors the lead in the third minute, only for Mathew Jones to level the scores with an 84th minute penalty: but Harry’s late late show ensured the Robins took all three points.
On a clear night the visitors got away with one early on when Sean McAllister’s challenge on Marc Williams in the area was not punished with a penalty, and seconds later the lively Mwandwe capitalised on a defensive mix up to prod home a crucial goal for Newtown, and deflate the home side. After an awful start Mattie Jones’ left wing cross saw Geoff Kellaway head just wide, but in truth the visitors were the better side early on, dominating possession, with Jack Kelly heading wide from Alex Fletcher’s corner. Joe Kenton sent in a dangerous cross, and then had a shot cleared while Stuart Jones in the home defence did well to deny Fletcher another opportunity. Kieran Mills-Evans headed wide from another corner, while Town’s efforts were failing to hit the target, other than Edmilson Vaz’s 35 yard volley which Dave Jones did well to grab at the second attempt. George Harry fired over for Newtown, while for Aber Lee Jenkins headed over from Wes Baynes’ corner. Mathew Jones also had a volley deflected for a corner, which was then cleared, but in truth after a fairly limpid performance Aber were glad to be still in the game at the break with a 0-1 scoreline.
The Black and Greens were transformed after the break and thoroughly dominated proceedings. Williams won a corner in the first seconds, and soon afterwards the combative Tom Price sent a cross which Stuart Jones headed back for Williams to nod goalbound, only for Jones to save the day again. Williams then saw a shot deflected for a corner, and Wes Baynes’ long range volley was touched onto the crossbar by the busy Jones. Mwandwe sent a volley wide but Aber were winning every ball, bossing the game and pressing for an equaliser. Williams headed wide from another Baynes delivery, and with the Dias Stand singing in appreciation of an improved performance, Paulo Mendes did brilliantly to gather the ball, turn and unleash a shot which fired just wide. Williams was denied another penalty, and Mwandwe called Connor Roberts into action for a routine save before normal service resumed. Lee Jenkins was next to volley wide from a Baynes free kick, and then saw another attempt cleared off the line. Finally, Baynes’ ball in was headed back by Mendes, and a penalty was awarded for a challenge in the box. Up stepped Mattie Jones to equalise with aplomb from the spot and it seemed at last that justice had been done. Ryan Edwards volleyed wide for Aber in injury time, and then right at the death Harry popped up in Aber’s box with a back headed which somehow crawled over the line, to the utter dismay of Aber’s loyal home supporters, and the game was won.
This result was very, very cruel on the Black and Greens who can be proud of an excellent second half performance: however Aber will be focused on getting results as January 2020 and Phase II homes into view, with Town in ninth place in the JD Cymru Premier.