Queens Park found themselves winning the WNL President’s Cup for the first time when they beat Cefn Albion 5-2 at Stantsy Park on Saturday 5th August in what was a dominant display from the League Champions.
Albion, who went into the game as underdogs, were heavily undermanned with four players on holiday and their captain Paul Griffiths attending the birth of his child.
Nevertheless, they played with all their hearts which made for an exciting ninety minutes.
Queens Park were on top throughout the first half, their left winger Nathan Buckley causing the Albion defence trouble with his pace and footwork narrowly missing a couple of good chances.
As the half progressed Albion’s chances of scoring seemed to lessen, their only real chance coming in the twentieth minute when a shot in the box curved wide.
It took till the 37th minute for Queens Park to find the back of the net for the first time as Nathan Buckley receives a through ball into the box and ends up one and one with the keeper, a simple finish round the keeper sees the only goal in the first half as Queens Park go into the break 1-0 up.
Despite a couple of half chances in the last 5 minutes, it was difficult to see Albion managing to come back into the tie in the second half, they were finding themselves outclassed by the higher tier Queens Park side.
The second half opened with Queens Park fully in command of the game looking sure to score a second, it came in the 55th minute as Centre Forward Mikey Latham, who had been playing a role in almost every chance Queens Park chance, received the ball just inside the box on the half volley and used his instep to lob the ball over the Albion keeper and into the goal.
This was followed by an injury to Cefn Albion’s right winger, who was substituted off after a nasty accidental collision with Queens Park’s Keeper Joey Jones. However, the loss of the player did not seem to affect Albion’s performance.
Seven minutes later and Queens Park added another to the goal tally as last season’s Welsh National League Premier’s top scorer Barry Torrence opened his account for the season, tapping in the ball after the Albion keeper spilt the ball following a strong effort from Latham.
Albion did start to show signs of coming back into the game, earning a couple of corners which led to strong efforts slightly missing but it wasn’t long before Queens Park had a fourth as Queens Park Keeper found Latham this time on the right wing, he played the ball across the box where it was slotted in by substitute Charlie Jones with his first touch of the game.
Five minutes later, in the 78th minute, Queens Park extended the scoreline to 5-0, this time another cross rolled along the ground into the box from the and centre mid Corey Smart hit a rocket into the top of the net, sealing the game for last years WNL Premier Champions.
Cefn Albion didn’t give up however, still unable to get past the defence in open play, they did manage to get a couple of corners which came close to goals. Eventually it took a 25 yard half volley effort to the top right corner from #9 Oliver Davies to get Cefn on the score sheet.
This was quickly followed by a second in the 90th minute as a 30 yard shot was deflected by the keeper setting Connor Kendrick up for a tap in. Shortly following this effort, referee Arthur Smallman blew the final whistle.
Overall a very strong performance by Martin Ford’s Queens Park, but they will be disappointed to concede late on, giving the side something to work on going into their Cymru Alliance season.
Man of the Match: Mikey Latham
Michael played a vital role in most of Queens Park goals and had a tremendous attacking and defensive work rate throughout the match.