JD Cymru Premier
Cefn Druids 0 Aberystwyth Town 1
On a night when the result was the most important thing, Antonio Corbisiero’s men dug deep and earned a huge 1-0 win away to improving Cefn Druids, thanks to Sgorio's Man of the Match Lee Jenkins’ towering 34th minute header. Aber defended stoutly to earn a crucial clean sheet, and went close to adding to the lead on numerous occasions, but they got the vital three points which took them up to tenth in the JD Cymru Premier.
Rhys Davies and Steff Davies both returned to Aber’s starting line up, while The Druids have clearly been doing some work behind the scenes since Interim Manager Any Turner’s first match back at Park Avenue a few weeks ago, and started the game with Joe Faux threatening down the left flank. Town however created the first clear chance when Sam Phillips set up Harry Franklin at the far post, but his attempt was comfortably collected by Druids keeper Ryan Neild. Louis Bradford also had a goalbound effort saved by Neild, and then at the other end Faux crossed for Aberystwyth born Charlie Edge to curl over the crossbar. The Druids were breaking dangerously and super keeper Gregor Zabret had to be alert, saving Emmanuel Agyemang’s cross, then saving a further attempt from the burly striker later on. Steff Davies had a header cleared off the line for the visitors, before Faux set up another chance, crossing for Zabret to save from a back post header. A rugged challenge on Franklin then earned a free kick for Aber and when Alex Darlington curled in a nicely angled delivery, the unmarked Jenkins rose like a salmon to put Aber ahead with a bullet header: a big goal in Aber’s season. The Black and Greens, wearing yellow for the night, took confidence from the score and another Jenkins header earned a corner, but Neild saved Phillips’ delivery. Faux brought a near post save from Zabret with a low drive, and Aber were lucky to survive a scramble from an injury time free kick out on the right, so the score remained at 0-1 for half time.
Aberystwyth started the second half well with Steff Davies causing havoc up front with a domineering performance. Three minutes into the half, Franklin looked to have scored when Neild fumbled his long range effort, but TV coverage showed that the home goalie had just about prevented the ball from crossing the line. The visitors were looking purposeful and quicker to the tackle, keen to nab the killer second: Steff Davies broke through but then had his effort blocked, Phillips had a low effort deflected for a corner, Franklin had a header saved and Steff Davies’ shot was blocked, before Franklin was fouled in the box to earn Aber a penalty on the hour. Sadly Raul Correia’s attempt flew over the bar and Druids were still in it. Niall Flint sent in a dangerous ball which evaded everyone in Black and White, and Dan Cabral hacked an attempt over with Zabret’s goal looking ever more under threat. Bradford had a goalbound header from a free kick saved, and then Zabret was out like lightning to deny Agyemang a certain equaliser. Darlington aimed another free kick in from the left and Franklin got the ball in the net, only to be denied a goal for an infringement. Aber survived more Druids pressure as Charlie Edge blasted over, and when sprightly sub Owain Jones burst through in injury time and brought a great save from Neild after a 70 yard run the game looked won. Town had to survive one final free kick from Edge, and finally after four minutes of injury time, this nerve wracking game ended!
This match was an engrossing one for the Green Army, who are today delighted that their team got the job done, and can now look upwards as the JD Cymru Premier season edges towards the halfway point. They will now take that winning confidence into another trip to North East Wales, to face Saltney Town in the JD Welsh Cup fourth round on Saturday (ko 2pm).