First Team Manager: Gavin Allen Sponsored by: Lloyd Warburton
Aberystwyth Town FC announced the appointment of Gavin Allen as First Team Manager in June 2020.
Gavin, who was recently accepted onto the FAW Pro Licence Course, moves up from his previous position as Assistant Manager, and he will replace the previous incumbent Mathew Bishop, who has agreed to stay on as Aber Town's Football Consultant. Aberystwyth Town expresses its gratitude to Mathew for accepting the offer to remain with the Club in his new capacity. Gavin Allen will be supported in the Management Structure by Antonio Corbisiero, who is now Club Assistant Manager, and Bari Morgan, the Club’s Under 19s Manager whose dual role as Assistant First Team Coach is intended to facilitate the progression of Under 19s players to the First Team Squad. Tomos Robson has also been appointed as Performance Analysis Coach. Gavin Allen told atfc.org.uk: “In the past two years of being involved with Aberystwyth Town FC, I’ve been fortunate enough to work with some highly experienced individuals. This time has been invaluable to my development in football management, and I have learnt a lot from it. I am absolutely delighted to be named Manager for the coming season, and I am especially grateful to my new management team who I know are as passionate as myself when it comes to achieving success for this club.
Assistant Manager: Antonio Corbisiero Sponsored by: Dean Evans Carpentry
Antonio Corbisiero was appointed as Assistant Manager in June 2020, following a spell as First Team Coach in 2019/20.
Antonio joined Aberystwyth Town in January 2013, having won the Welsh Premier League, the Welsh Cup and the League Cup during his seven years with Llanelli. He also played in the Champions League, UEFA Cup and the Europa League with the club he skippered and in total, scored 15 goals from 206 (+10) Welsh Premier appearances. Antonio moved to Ceredigion before signing, and his calmness and quality on the ball helped Aber to safety in his first season. In the Summer of 2013 Corbs was made first team Coach, alongside running the U16 Academy squad, and in two and a half seasons in Black and Green went on to play in the Welsh Cup Final in May 2014, and the UEFA Europa League in 2014/5.
Corbs made 64 WPL appearances for the Black and Greens, scoring once, and 280 WPL appearances in all (including 16 goals) since joining Llanelli in 2005. He has also played for Newport County. Primarily a midfielder who could also play at right back or on the wing, Antonio's work rate on the pitch was second to none, and he is an excellent example to the Young Players he has coached at the Academy and through to the First Team.
First Team Coach: Bari Morgan Sponsored by: S7 Fitness
Aberystwyth Town confirmed the appointment of Bari Morgan as Under 19s Manager in June 2017. Bari needed no introduction to anyone at Park Avenue, having made over 300 appearances in Central Midfield for the Club between 2001-14, before moving on to Coach at Penrhyncoch and at Aber Town's Academy.
He was charged with developing talented Academy products into an Under 19s Squad which has a clear pathway into the WPL First Team Squad, and he said on his appointment: "I am proud to announce I have been appointed Aberystwyth Town U19s manger and am looking forward to working with talented youngsters. It is a great opportunity for me to get back involved with the Club and I am looking forward to working hard and getting as many Under 19 players as possible promoted through to the First Team over the coming years."
Morgan spent 14 seasons as a Player at Park Avenue after joining from Swansea City, where he was awarded a professional contract. An Aberaeron secondary school pupil from Plwmp, now working at a Llanon computing firm, Welsh speaking Bari was a Club Captain and a tenacious midfielder who gave everything for the team. He won the 2003/04 Supporters' Player of the Year Award and was a Wales Semi Pro International in 2004. He captained the side in the InterToto Cup against FC Dinaburg in 2004 and also played in the Europa League for Town ten years later against Derry City. Overall he made 309 WPL Appearances, all in Black and Green.
Bari managed Aber's Black and Green Under 19s which won back to back Welsh Premier Development League titles in 2017/8 and 2018/9. A number of the players involved have now joined the First Team Squad, and Bari was appointed as First Team Coach in June 2020.
First Team Coach: Gari Lewis
Aberystwyth Town announced the addition of Gari Lewis to the first-team coaching staff in March 2021. Having served as club captain in his playing days and later as Head of Youth Development with ATFC Academy, Gari makes his first move into a senior coaching role at the club.
Making 429 total appearances for the club between 1992 and 2007, scoring 19 times, Gari became a stalwart on the hallowed Park Avenue turf. Serving as captain for a period and featuring in some of Town’s most memorable games, including our 1999 Intertoto Cup tie with Floriana FC, Gari is one of the region’s most well-known and well-liked footballing figures. A leader on the pitch, Gari took up coaching roles while still playing, amassing 18 years as academy coach and later Head of Youth Development at the club.
Alongside his duties at ATFC, Gari was appointed Penrhyncoch manager in 2011 and oversaw the club’s most successful period of recent times, headlined by a league and cup double in 2016, gaining promotion to the JD Cymru North. Gari established the club in the second tier since their ascension, including a dramatic final day survival in 2018/19 with a 3-2 win vs Conwy Borough, at the expense of Holywell Town. In his final year at Cae Baker, Gari led The Roosters to a mid-table finish before stepping down from his role after nine years at the helm, replaced by fellow Town greats Aneurin Thomas and Sion James in the dugout.
Ahead of his return, Gari told us: “I’m immensely proud to be back at Park Avenue after serving this great club as a player, academy coach, and Head of Youth Development for 18 years. I promise the Aber faithful that I will give everything in my power to improve results and get us up the table to secure our place in the Cymru Premier and push this club forward!”
GK Coach / U19s Manager: Dave Owen Sponsored by: N A Commericals Ltd
Formerly a GK coach at Neath and Swansea City among others, Dave joined the coaching team in 2018 as 1st Team GK Coach and was later appointed the successor to Bari Morgan as U19s Manager in 2019.
A resident of Llanrhystud, Dave holds a FAW Goalkeeper B License holder and is a UEFA B License candidate.
Physiotherapist: Megan Meredith Sponsored by: Tony Bates
Aberystwyth based Megan completed a degree at Birmingham University and joined the club as Matchday Physiotherapist in August 2018.
Physiotherapist: Gwion Pugh-Jones Sponsored by: Joan Pugh-Jones
An ex-pupil at Ysgol Penglais, Gwion joined the club in 2020 having graduated from Keele University. Gwion represented Town at academy level and played for our U19s before university, now playing for Penrhyncoch in the Cymru North.
Performance Analyst: Tomos Robson Sponsored by: Conrad's Cabs Tomos joined Aberystwyth Town in 2020 as Performance Analyst, having previously had spells working as an Analyst with Cardiff and the Vale College, Cardiff City and Cheltenham Town FC.
Football Consultant: Matthew Bishop Sponsored by: Bow Street Football Club
Aberystwyth Town FC were delighted to announce the appointment of Matthew Bishop as First Team Manager of the Club in March 2019. Penrhyncoch-based Matthew is currently employed as a Senior National Coach Developer and he returned for a second spell in charge at Park Avenue after a season at the helm in 2016/17. He of course holds the prerequisite Pro Licence Certificate which ensures the Black and Greens comply with their UEFA Licensing requirements, and has signed a contract with the Club which runs until the end of the 2019/20 season, with the option of a further extension.
Bishop previously was Assistant Manager at Hereford FC when they reached a Wembley FA Vase Final and won the Midland Football League Premier Division, League Cup and Herefordshire Challenge Cup in 2015/6. Prior to that he coached Newport County to promotion into the Blue Square Premier in 2009/10 with a record points total, and has also worked with Aldershot Town, Wales Under 16s, 17s and England Under 20s sides. Bish played eight games for the Black and Greens in their first two WPL seasons (1992-4) before moving to Bangor City, Conwy United and Rhayader, making a total of 61 WPL appearances, scoring once. Matthew moved from his position as First Team Manager to a new role as Football Consultant in June 2020.
Connor began his professional career with Everton in 2011, enjoying a couple of loan spells before moving to Cheltenham Town a year later where he spent two seasons with the Gloucestershire club. A year with Chester was followed by a move into top-flight Welsh football when he moved to Bangor City, where he starred between 2015-18.
Connor then joined The New Saints in 2018 and has provided cover for Paul Harrison on TNS’ European ventures, including an excruciating loss to B36 Torshavn of the Faroe Islands on penalties.
Connor joined Aber last summer on a season long loan from the champions, demonstrating his quality throughout the season – including a Man of the Match performance in a 0-0 away draw at Latham Park in December 2019. His highlights on that day can be seen HERE.
On the international stage, Roberts has represented Wales at U19s level four times with six appearances for the U21s. In 2014, he received a call-up to the senior squad for a friendly against the Netherlands, and was selected to the Cymru C squad in March 2020 alongside teammate Lee Jenkins to face England C
Name: Alex Pennock Squad Number: 13 Position: Goalkeeper Sponsored by: Jeremy Housden & Gerard Coughlin
Local lad and Aberystwyth University Scholarship holder Pennock returns to this year's squad, having provided backup to Connor Roberts in 2019/20, making 5 first team appearances.
19-year-old defender Louis Bradford joined the Seasiders on loan in Summer 2020 from The New Saints. Wolverhampton-born Louis impressed in TNS’ Academy sides, enough so to secure himself a loan move in the JD Cymru Premier. A tall and agile defender, Louis is proficient through the middle or as a right-back and will bolster Gavin Allen’s options at the back.
First Team Coach Bari Morgan said: "Louis' performances in training and during friendlies have been impressive, and his versatility is key to our defensive options this season"
Aberystwyth Town announced the return of academy product, Welsh Premier Development League champion and Welsh international Harri Horwood in January 2021. The 20-year-old left-sided player returns to Park Avenue after spells with Cardiff Met University and Briton Ferry Llansawel.
A pacey and tenacious winger, who also has experience at left-back, Harri progressed through Town’s academy and was an integral part of the Black and Greens’ hugely successful double-winning U19 Development squad of 2017/18 that became the first squad in club history to win a national title. Lead by current 1st Team coach Bari Morgan, assistant Iwan Roberts and captained by Jack Rimmer, the youngsters beat The New Saints at Latham Park to claim their first of two consecutive titles, before lifting the Central Wales FA Youth Cup two weeks later thanks to a Mathew Jones hattrick against Rhayader FC.
As well as representing Town’s youth team, Harri featured for Penrhyncoch of the Cymru North, further aiding his development and progression to senior football. A regular under Town legend Gari Lewis, Harri’s tenure at Cae Baker was headlined by an away brace vs Ruthin Town, securing The Roosters’ league status in 17/18 despite a travelling squad of just 12 with several starters missing the game.
On the international stage, Harri has amassed 14 appearances in a Cymru shirt across schoolboys and academy level, including a 0-2 win to retain the John Coughlin Memorial Cup vs the Republic of Ireland where Harri netted the opening goal at Graun Park - a squad including fellow Seasiders Alex Pennock, Lee Jenkins and Liam Doherty.
In 2018, Harri made the move to the capital to study at Cardiff Metropolitan University where he spent a season with Met before joining Briton Ferry Llansawel for the 2019/20 season, playing alongside ex-Seasider and fan favourite Mark Jones before season curtailment in March 2020. Harri re-joined The Archers for 2020/21 season but will now reunite with old friends at Park Avenue.
Upon rejoining the Seasiders, Harri commented: “I’m ecstatic to be re-joining my hometown club after time away at university. This is the club I supported growing up and I have many great memories here, including making my first Cymru Premier appearance at 17, which was a huge personal achievement.
I’m looking forward to getting back to it with the boys, especially with several former U19s now part of the 1st Team set-up, such as Matty, Pens, Lee and Rimmer, so it’s a very exciting time for us all. Hopefully I can help the club achieve its short and long-term goals”.
First-team coach Bari Morgan said: “We’re very pleased to have Harri back at Park Avenue. He’s a player with a huge potential that he showed as part of our triumphant U19 squad a few years back. In his time away, Harri has been working hard and has developed his game and himself tremendously, so we look forward to working with him again”.
Name: Lee Jenkins Squad Number: 4 Position: Defender Sponsored by: Russell Hughes-Pickering
Aberystwyth Town announced that young starlet Lee Jenkins had signed a one year contract extension with the Black and Greens in June 2020, and will remain at Park Avenue for the 2020/21 season. At just 19 years of age, Lee is one of the club’s most promising talents, and has already made over 50 Cymru Premier appearances since making his full JD Welsh Premier League debut in Town’s home victory against Llandudno in August 2018. He has also scored two goals, most notably his winning goal against Champions TNS in November 2018. Lee played a pivotal role as Captain of Bari Morgan's Under 19's double-winning squad in seasons 2017/18 and 2018/19 and produced a number of impressive performances for Aber's development sides in recent seasons. Lee stands at 6 feet tall, and is a no-nonsense defender with a physical presence who also possesses the technical ability to play the ball to feet. He was selected to play for Wales' u18 School Boys side in 2017/8, where he excelled in the central defensive position against old enemy England. Arguably Aberystwyth Town’s stand out player of the past season, Lee was selected for the Welsh Semi Pro squad due to face England at Caernarfon in March, a match that sadly never took place due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Lee told atfc.org.uk this evening: “It’s great to be able to play with my local Club in the Cymru Prem for another season. I can’t wait to get going again and to meet the new squad that’s being built. I’m looking forward to the challenges ahead this season and help achieve our targets!"
Aberystwyth Town Football Club announced the acquisition of central defender Ian Kearney from City of Liverpool FC of the Northern Premier League Division One West.
Known to Cymru Premier fans for his stints with Airbus UK Broughton and Connah’s Quay Nomads, amassing eight appearances in the Europa League, Ian brings a wealth of experience and leadership qualities to Aber’s youthful defence.
33-year-old Ian began his Cymru Premier career with Airbus UK Broughton in 2012 where he enjoyed four very successful season with The Wingmakers, qualifying for the UEFA Europa League for three consecutive years thanks to back-to-back runner-up finishes in 12/13 and 13/14, followed by a 3rd place in 14/15. Ian completed 90 minutes home & away vs FK Ventspils of Latvia as Airbus lost on way goals in a narrow 1-1 AEG contest.
The following year, Ian again featured in both legs vs Haugesund of Norway, with Airbus narrowly coming up short by a score of 3-2 AEG.
In his final season at The Airfield, Ian captained Airbus to the 2015/16 Welsh Cup Final, where his side faced The New Saints at The Racecourse. On the day, however, Craig Harrison’s men came out on top by a score of 2-0 to complete their domestic treble as Ian bid farewell to the club, joining Connah’s Quay Nomads for a 2-year spell.
At Deeside, Ian played both legs as The Nomads held Norwegian side Stabæk to a 0–0 draw at Rhyl before travelling to Scandinavia where an early Callum Morris strike secured an historic 1–0 victory for The Nomads. The result marked the first time in 24 years and 214 games that a Welsh side involved in European competition had kept two clean sheets across the two legs of a European tie. Despite a next round loss to FK Vojvodina, The Nomads continued their success in the league by securing a record position of 2nd and qualifying for the Scottish Challenge Cup the following season.
Departing The Nomads in 2018, Ian joined City of Liverpool FC the following year in the Northern Premier League Division One West, featuring for The Purps prior to season curtailment in March 2020.
Speaking with atfc.org.uk, Ian said: “I’m delighted to have signed with Aber and now very much looking forward to meeting the lads and getting started. From my initial discussion with the gaffer, I got a real positive feeling about the club and the opportunity we have. It was clear he wants to do things the right way and believes in the squad he has, so hopefully I can help build on that and support things going forward”.
Name:Harry Franklin Squad Number: 6 Position: Midfielder
Aberystwyth Town announced the deadline day acquisition of talented midfielder Harry Franklin from Evesham United of the Southern League Division One South in January 2021. Also experienced in a deeper central role, the 21-year-old joins the Seasiders for the remainder of the 2020/21 season.
Born in Lisburn, Northern Ireland, Harry plied his trade from youth to senior level with Hereford FC of the National League North where he spent time on loan at Merthyr Town. Departing the Bulls in 2018, a season and a half at Redditch United followed before Harry joined county rivals Evesham United in October 2019. Having quickly impressed at Jubilee Stadium, The Robins put Harry on contract terms in February 2020 as he went on to make 22 appearances, scoring thrice before season curtailment in March 2020. With 13 appearances and a further three goals this season, Harry now makes the switch to Park Avenue and the JD Cymru Premier.
Assistant Manager Antonio Corbisiero commented: “Harry is a very exciting talent who can play a number of positions, predominantly in midfield. He’s a great athlete and a fantastic passer of the ball with a keen eye for goal who’s excited to challenge himself at this level. We look forward to seeing him at Park Avenue – welcome Harry!”.
Name:Mathew Jones Squad Number: 7 Position: Defender / Midfielder Sponsored by: Ian Pugh Local boy Mathew Jones joined the Club in August 2017.
21 year old Mathew attended Comins Coch and Penglais Schools and is the son of Richie "Gas" Jones who played for Town's Reserve side for years and is a loyal supporter of the Black and Greens. He was a key member of Shrewsbury Town's Youth Team which enjoyed a good FA Youth Cup run, reaching the fourth round before being knocked out by Premier League side Sunderland, and joined Aber on his release from the Shrews in 2017. Matty was selected for the Wales Semi Pro side which drew 2-2 with England C at Salford City in March 2019.
Jones made a keen impression in pre-season 2017 with some full blooded performances in Central Midfield and was rewarded with squad number 17. In his first season with the club, Mathew was part of the Town side which reached the Welsh Cup Final of 2018, and he was announced in June 2018 as the first recipient of a Football Club Scholarship at Aberystwyth University. The club will support two players through University courses per year, and more details can be found here.
Since receiving his scholarship, Matty has been an integral part of the Black & Greens making over 100 appearances across all competitions, featuring predominantly at centre midfield and left-back.
Aberystwyth Town FC announced the arrival of Central Midfielder Jamie Veale, who left Merthyr Town at the end of last season, in June 2020.
24 year old Veale is a tenacious midfield player who joined Cardiff City at a young age and worked his way through the Academy. He signed a professional contract at the age of 17, and spent four years as a professional, captaining Cardiff City’s Under-23 team before moving to his hometown Club Merthyr in January 2019. He is a creative player through the middle who is quick to do his defensive duties when needed, and also has a knack for scoring special strikes.
Jamie told atfc.org.uk: “I am delighted to join the Club. After a great chat with the Manager his ambition was clear, which was a key factor in me joining the Club. I look forward to meeting all the boys and getting Pre season going, and hopefully achieving great things this coming season.”
Name: Jon Owen Squad Number: 9 Position: Forward
Forward Jon Owen re-joined the Seasiders in January 2021 from Porthmadog for a second spell in Black & Green.
Affectionately known as “Jon y Cigydd” (the Butcher) by certain factions of the Green Army, Jon Owen makes his return to Park Avenue for a second spell. Formerly of Bangor City, Llangefni Town, Caersws, Rhyl, Llandudno, and Cefn Druids, the 28-year-old Welsh-speaking attacker spent 18-months in Black & Green, becoming a regular starter after joining in January 2017. Known for his pace, power, and ability to make something out of nothing, Jon gives Town an experienced option in attack.
Name: Marc Williams (Club Captain) Squad Number: 10 Position: Attacking Midfielder / Striker Sponsored by: Matthew Baker
Aberystwyth Town Football Club announced the retention of striker and Club Captain Marc Williams for the 2020/21 season.
As well as a keen eye for goal, Marc is an expert at holding the ball up, and his influence in the dressing room was underlined when he was named Club Captain for the 2019/20 season. Marc is also an influential character off the field and he was awarded the JD Cymru Premier Player of the Month Award for April 2020, after organising a fundraiser to raise vital funds for NHS Wales. He encouraged other JD Cymru Leagues players to help him in achieving his goal and comfortably reached his target of £5,000. Marc has previously spent periods with Conference sides Wrexham, Chester, Northwich Victoria and Kidderminster Harriers and has been capped for Wales at U17, U19, U21 and semi-professional levels. He also had spells with Llandudno and Cymru Alliance outfit Bangor City. Known for his prolific goal scoring record, the front man made 86 appearances for Wrexham between 2005 and 2011, scoring 17 goals in the process. He scored 14 goals in 60 games for Conference North side Chester City between 2011 and 2014, and more recently netted 25 goals in 76 games for Llandudno in the JD Welsh Premier League, guiding them to a Europa League qualification tie back in 2016/17.
Name: Rhys Davies Squad Number: 11 Position: Defender Sponsored by: Ian Pugh
Aberystwyth Town announced the arrival of talented 19 year old left back Rhys Davies in June 2020. Rhys, from Talgarth in mid Wales is a highly rated defender who joins the Club from National League side Hereford FC. Davies joined Shrewsbury Town in July 2017 straight from school, signing a two year scholarship with the Shrews, after playing Youth Football for Hereford FC. Whilst at Shrewsbury Rhys reportedly attracted the attention of Premier League and Championship Clubs, having spent time on trial at Southampton, where he impressed, as well as being watched by Bournemouth and Norwich. He also went out and starred on loan in non-league at an impressive level for his age, playing close on 30 games for National League North outfit Nuneaton Borough and National League South Chippenham Town. Davies joined Hereford in July 2019 from Shrewsbury Town and also spent time on loan with Merthyr Town last season, but will travel west for his football this coming season in the Cymru Premier. Rhys’ father Gareth was also a professional footballer for Crystal Palace, Cardiff City, Reading and Swindon, and now works for the FAW Trust. Rhys told www.atfc.org.uk today: “I am really excited to be signing for Aberystwyth and playing in the Cymru Premier, looking forward to getting started and showing everyone at Park Avenue what I can do and having a successful season.”
Aberystwyth Town announced the arrival of striker Steff Davies from Penrhyncoch in July 2020. A former Bow Street striker, Steff joined Penrhyn during the summer of 2017 having previously represented Haverfordwest County and Caersws. A physical and strong forward who teaches in local Ysgol Plascrug, Steff scored 11 goals in the Roosters’ final two Cymru Alliance seasons, and continued to score last season in the Cymru North, notching five more strikes including a match winning double against Buckley in October 2019.
Name: Jonathan Evans Squad Number: 15 Position: Forward Sponsored by: Aneurin Thomas
Aberystwyth Town announced the arrival of striker Jonathan Evans from Penrhyncoch in July 2020, who joins for a third spell in Black and Green. 28 year old Jonathan is an Aberystwyth Town FC Academy product and son of Mid Wales Travel Supremo and Club Sponsor Mel Evans. As a youngster Jonathan progressed to Cardiff City's Academy and whilst there he represented the Welsh Schoolboys and Under 16s sides, competing in the Victory Shield.
Jonathan then signed for Accrington Stanley before first joining Aber during Alan Morgan's tenure in July 2011. He made 5 WPL Appearances in 2011/12 before moving on to Penrhynoch, and returned to Aber in January 2016. His best moment that season was scoring twice to earn the Black and Greens a 3-1 win at Haverfordwest County, and he also notched a vital last minute winner at Llandudno the following season, but Jonathan returned to Cae Baker later in 2016/7.
Aberystwyth Town Football Club announced the signing of Gwion Owen from Ruthin Town following a successful trial period in September 2020. The 25-year-old energetic midfielder reunited with former teammate Ilan Hughes in Gavin Allen’s squad.
Welsh-speaking Gwion hails from Llannefydd, near Denbigh, and has impressed in the JD Cymru North with many standout performances since joining Ruthin in 2017. He picked up the club’s Player’s Player of the Season award in 2017/18 and in 2019/20 – captained by Hughes until his departure for Park Avenue in January 2020. Owen was credited with many strong showings throughout, a highlight being his 85th minute equaliser vs Bangor City in October. Gwion shone as a half-time sub trialist during Town’s 1-2 pre-season loss to Haverfordwest County in August 2020, immediately demonstrating his pace and power as Aber pulled a goal back early. This, alongside consistency in training, secured Gwion the move to the JD Cymru Premier.
Upon joining, Gwion said: I can't wait to start playing in the Cymru Premier and for Aber. It's a step up for me but I’m ready for the challenge to push myself and play at the highest level possible. I had a good chat with Gav about the way he wants to play, and I thought it suited my style of play. He said that the club is on the up and told me about his plans to change the club going forward. I hope to bring energy to the team and use my versatility by playing in different positions if needed.
First team manager Gavin Allen said:I’m very pleased to secure Gwion’s signature for this season. He’s a versatile and very energetic player who I have watched for many seasons as a prospect I’d love to bring to the Cymru Prem. He has had a promising pre-season with us and I’m sure he will relish the competitiveness of playing at this higher level.”
Exciting 18 year old winger Richie Ricketts, who hails from Llanfarian, joined the Black and Greens from Bow Street in August 2019 after making a positive impression in pre season.
He scored in Aber's first friendly against Llanidloes Town and did enough to earn his opportunity with Aber Town's First Team Squad in 2019/20.
He moved to Penrhyncoch on loan in January 2020, whilst remaining contracted to the Black and Greens until the end of 2020/21. Still in school at Penweddig, Richie has made a positive impression in his Cymru Premier appearances to date for Aber Town, and bolstered Penrhyncoch’s attacking options, before returning to the Seasiders at the end of April.
Aberystwyth Town Football Club announced the signing of Steven Hewitt for the 2020/21 Cymru Premier season. The 27-year-old ex-Bangor City midfielder joins the Seasiders from Australian club Hume City FC of the National Premier Leagues Victoria.
Manchester-born Hewitt began his career with the youth teams of Blackburn Rovers and Stockport County before becoming a scholar at Burnley FC in 2010. He signed his first professional contract in October 2011, a two-and-a-half-year deal to remain at Turf Moor and made his professional debut for the club in March 2012, coming on as a substitute for Charlie Austin in a 1-0 win vs Brighton & Hove Albion. Loan spells at Alfreton Town and Southport followed where he made 22 appearances, scoring twice before leaving The Clarets at the end of his contract. Short spells at Chester and Southport followed, before Hewitt joined Accrington Stanley on a one-year contract in July 2016.
Steven made the switch to Welsh football in July 2017 when he joined Gary Taylor-Fletcher’s Bangor City team who finished runners-up to The New Saints. Hewitt became well-known to the Park Avenue faithful in September when he broke Black & Green hearts with a rasping half-volley in the 93rd minute to snatch all three points for The Citizens after Aber had drawn level on 90 minutes. Highlights of that thriller can be seen here.Steven then made the move Down Under and spent a year with National Premier Leagues Victoria side Hume City based in Broadmeadows, a suburb of Melbourne.
Steven told ATFC.org.uk: “I spoke to a couple of teams, but when I spoke to Gav he told me about his style of football and his ambitions for the season ahead and it sounded perfect for the way I want to play - I knew it was the right club for me. I've spoken to Willow (Marc Williams) and he's said how great a club it is and that I’d be a perfect fit, so it was an easy choice. I can’t wait to get started and help this great club get back to where it belongs!”
First Team manager Gavin Allen said: “Steve is a fantastic signing for us who had numerous clubs after his signature. I’m over the moon to sign a player with so much quality and experience – he’s a great addition to our squad!”
Name:Owain Jones Squad Number: 20 Position: Forward Sponsored by: Caerbryn Football Club
Aberystwyth Town announced the arrival of Wales Under 21 International Owain Jones in June 2020.
24 year old Welsh speaker Owain, who features as a winger or a striker, was born in Swansea and played junior football for Pontardawe Town Juniors AFC before signing for Swansea City at the age of 10. Jones scored 16 goals in 20 appearances for Swansea City’s U18s team and was offered his first professional contract in 2014. Owain was named as Swansea City Under 18s Player of the Year in 2014-15. In January 2017, Jones signed for Yeovil Town on loan and made his English Football League debut for Yeovil against Hartlepool United, on 4 February 2017. Owain then moved from Swansea to Merthyr Town, had a spell with National league North side Nuneaton Borough and was loaned back to Merthyr Town in September 2018, where he scored 8 goals from 57 appearances.
On the International field Jones has represented Wales at U16 level at a triangular tournament in Belgium involving the hosts, Wales and Switzerland. In 2012–13 he was called up into the Wales U17 squad in the European Championship Qualification Group stage against England, Northern Ireland and Estonia. Jones was selected for the Wales U19s squad the following season for their European Championship Qualification Group stage in Georgia scoring the first goal in a 6–0 victory in their final game against Moldova - a win which ensured qualification for the Elite Round in Portugal where Jones made 2 further appearances. In 2014–15, Jones was again selected for the U19s quad U19 European Championship Qualification Group campaign and started in all 3 games in Portugal. Still aged 18, Jones was called into the U21 squad for the European Championship fixture against Bulgaria at the Cardiff City Stadium on 31 March 2015. He was an unused substitute in a 3–1 win. Later in the qualification campaign, Jones made his debut in a 2–1 win over Armenia.
Owain told atfc.org.uk: "I am really excited to make the move to Aberystwyth. After some great conversations with Gav and Baz over the last year I feel that this is the right move for me. I can’t wait to get going when it’s safe to do so.’
Name: Joe Saunders Squad Number: 21 Position: Midfielder Sponsored by: Kevin Jones and Hydro Schemes UK Ltd
Academy product Joe joined the first-team squad for the 2020/21 season.
He is yet to make his senior debut but has featured regularly on the bench this season.
Name: Dan Cockerline Squad Number: 23 Position: Striker
Aberystwyth Town announced the arrival of striker Dan Cockerline from FC United of Manchester of the Northern Premier League in January 2021.
A towering 6’4” centre-forward, 24-year-old Dan progressed through the ranks as a scholar at Sheffield United, representing The Blades at U18 and U21 level as well as enjoying loan spells with Grantham, Marine, Matlock and Curzon Ashton.
Released in summer 2016, Dan spent a year at National League Barrow AFC before two seasons with National League North side Southport FC. A short stint Down Under with Adelaide Blue Eagles followed as Dan returned to the English pyramid with a very impressive season at AFC Liverpool, scoring 22 times and providing 9 assists in just 26 appearances. This earned Dan a move up three divisions, joining FC United of Manchester in June 2020. With three goals from six starts for The Reds before suspension, Dan joins the Seasiders hungry for more.
Having completed his move, Dan told atfc.org.uk: “I’m delighted to join the club and really looking forward to getting involved with the rest of the squad. The opportunity to challenge myself in the Cymru Premier is something that was really appetising and the opportunity to showcase what I am about as a player. I can’t wait to pull on the shirt when the time comes to kick off the season again and start climbing the table.”
First-team coach Bari Morgan commented: “As a management team, we are absolutely delighted to have secured Dan’s signature. Being 6’4”, Dan brings real presence and much-needed physicality to our squad. He’s quick, mobile, hard-working, and has a real eye for scoring goals.
We look forward to working with him and we’re excited for Dan to showcase his talents to the fans”.
Name: Sam Barnes Squad Number: 26 Position: Defender
Aberystwyth Town announced the arrival of Centre Back Sam Barnes, who joins from Widnes FC of the Northern Premier League in summer 2020.
29 year old Sam began his career with Liverpool Schoolboys before joining Stockport County, and he made his debut for the Hatters in League One at the age of 18, before going on to train with Manchester United.
Barnes then moved to Hednesford Town, with whom he won the Evo Stick Play Offs, before joining to Colwyn Bay where he was Club Captain for three years. he then moved to Bangor City before entering the Cymru Premier arena with Newtown, whom he helped to a Top Six finish.
Sam left Newtown in January and most recently played for Widnes, before agreeing terms to join the Seasiders for the 2020/21 season. He has also played for Northwich Victoria, Marine and Glossop North End.
Aberystwyth Town Football Club announced the signing of Wrexham academy product Jack Thorn on a permanent basis in summer 2020. The Chester-born 19-year-old joins the Seasiders following a short loan spell at Latham Park with Newtown AFC last season.
After starting his career at Wrexham at the age of seven as a left-back, he progressed through the ranks at The Racecourse and was often deployed as a left winger, sometimes playing centrally.
Son of former Wimbledon Crazy Gang FA Cup winner Andy, Jack followed his father’s footsteps in the professional game and was named as an unused substitute in the FA Cup against Newport and FA Trophy against Boston in December 2018.
He made his first senior appearance during the 2018/19 campaign against Harrogate Town coming on as a late substitute for The Robins.
Aberystwyth Town announced the return of striker Jamie Reed to Park Avenue in February 2021. The 33-year-old Cymru Premier veteran returns to The Seasiders for a third spell, having first joined in 2007 under Brian Coyne and again in 2015 under Ian Hughes.
One of the Cymru Premier’s most prolific strikers over the past 15 years, Jamie first joined Aber from Wrexham where he had progressed through the youth ranks. Joining Aber on loan at age 20, Jamie made an immediate and unforgettable impression on his home debut, hitting TNS for three in a 5-1 win at Park Avenue, on his way to finding the net 9 times in 20 appearances. A move to Rhyl followed where he won the 2008/09 Cymru Premier title before a move to Bangor City, winning the 2010 Welsh Cup and 2010/11 title, scoring 18 times, led by ex-Aber manager Nev Powell.
Jamie was then one of the original three musketeers from the Cymru Premier to ply his trade in Australia, playing for Dandenong Thunder with Aber greats Luke Sherbon and Geoff Kellaway in 2010, later representing South Melbourne. Jamie will now link up once more with Geoff for a fourth time for the remainder of the 2020/21 season.
A very successful spell in English football saw Jamie play twice at Wembley with York City, winning the FA Trophy and Football League Playoff Final, as well as time with Chester and Cambridge United.
Returning to the Welsh pyramid in 2014, Jamie joined perennial league winners TNS, from whom he joined Aber for a second loan spell in 2015. History almost repeated itself for Jamie, as a 38 minute brace vs Rhyl gave him the chance to make it two hattricks in two home debuts, only for an impressive save from to-be-Seasider Terry McCormick denying him another treble in front of the Green Army.
Spells with several Cymru Premier teams followed, with Jamie representing Llandudno, Bangor City for a second time, Newtown and Cefn Druids before becoming available for a third stint at Park Avenue, though his first on a permanent basis.
Upon his arrival, Jamie told us:
"My family and I have always felt welcome and we have fond memories from my previous times at Aber, so it was an easy decision to come back."
Asked about his favourite moments in Black & Green:
"The hat-trick on my debut against TNS is the one that sticks out the most, of course. In both spells I’ve done well so hopefully I can score some goals and help the team climb the table. It’s so tight in the league at the moment and with the current situation anyone can beat anyone so it’s about taking our opportunities. Hopefully my experience can help the younger lads who, from what I have seen, have a lot of quality."
Name:Geoff Kellaway Squad Number: 31 Position: Forward Sponsored by: Mart Smith
Fan favourite Kellaway, whose blistering pace strikes fear into hearts of opposing managers and defenders throughout the Cymru Premier, has been a major part of a Black and Greens attack force which notched over 140 goals between 2014-16. Geoff was named on the bench in the WPL Team of the Season, and won the prestigious Aberystwyth Town First Team Supporters' Player of the Season at the Club Dinner in June 2015.
Geoff began his career with Aberystwyth Town, making his debut during the 2003/04 season. He went on to make 141 appearances for the club, scoring 32 goals, and featured in the 2009 Welsh Cup final defeat to Bangor City. In May 2010, having been named in the 2009/10 Welsh Premier League team of the season, Kellaway joined Dandenong Thunder along with fellow Cymru Premier players Luke Sherbon and Jamie Reed. In August 2010, he was signed to a three month injury replacement contract with A-League side Melbourne Victory. He made his debut for the club as a substitute during a 2-2 draw with North Queensland Fury, becoming the 500th player to make an appearance in the A-League. He was released by the Victory and returned to Wales at the end of the 2010/11 season. In July 2011, he re-joined Aberystwyth Town and after one more season at Park Avenue, in June 2012 he moved to Llanelli, where he made his debut in the Europa League versus Kups in Finland. Geoff then moved to Carmarthen Town in January 2013 before returning to Park Avenue the following summer, where he has remained since, playing in the Welsh Cup Final of 2013/4, 2017/18, and the UEFA Europa League and Europa League Play Off Final in 2014/5.
Since making his debut for the Black and Greens in 2003/4 Geoff has played over 300 WPL games. His superb service to the Welsh Premier League was recognised at the Annual Dinner in June 2018 when he was awarded the Clubman of the Year Award. You can watch the accompanying video here.
Aberystwyth Town announced the return of 21-year-old defender Jack Rimmer, who rejoined the Black and Greens in June 2020 after an eighteen month spell at Penrhyncoch.
Academy Product Jack first joined the First Team Squad for 2015/16. A former pupil at Ysgol Gyfun Penweddig, he has an impeccable sporting background, having been invited to join Liverpool's Academy at age 10, Birmingham City's Academy at 11, and having trials at Stoke City at 14. He started playing for Padarn United before joining the very successful Aber United team, winning the Ian Rush Super Cup Under 11 age group in 2009, and finishing as runners up in 2010. Jack represented Central Wales in the Cymru Cup of 2013 and the Welsh National/Regional Development Squads in 2012 and 2013. He has also played for Penweddig and Ceredigion Schools throughout his School Years, and played for Central Wales Boys 2014 and again in 2015 where Jack captained the side.
Jack, previously a Midfielder but more recently deployed at Right Back for Penrhyn, was part of Aberystwyth Town's Academy sides from the Under 12 Age Group onwards and was in the side that reached the Welsh Final in 2012. He is also an accomplished golfer, as part of the Dyfed team that won Welsh schools championship 2014, and has represented Ceredigion Schools Athletics Squads several times in the 100m and 400m sprints. Jack, now aged 21, captained the Aber Town Under 19s side which won the Welsh Premier Development League twice in a row, scoring the winning goal in the Final against TNS in 2017/8.He told atfc.org.uk: "I'm really excited to get going, whenever the season starts again, hopefully not too far into the future! I'm also looking forward to meeting the boys and to start pre season as we mean to go on."
The following players have moved on since the start of the 2020/21 season:
Name: Harri Rowe Squad Number: 3 Position: Defender / Midfielder