ROUND-UP – MATCHDAY FOUR: Welsh Premier League
After a break with Nathaniel MG Cup action, the Welsh Premier League returned this weekend and we were treated to a spectacle of games, including first wins since Barry Town’s return to the top flight and a key victory for the ten men of Connah’s Quay Nomads over their rivals Bala Town.
With the JD Welsh Premier League proving to be at its most competitive for years, there has been no clear indication of a breakaway favourite for the league title as of yet, and both newcomers Barry and Prestatyn have proven they’re more then capable of picking up the hard earned points when necessary.
And with both Carmarthen and Aberystwyth remaining pointless at the bottom of the division, but having experienced managers at the helm and with the league splitting into two at the midway mark, it remains unclear who is headed for the drop just yet.
Llandudno 2-2 Prestatyn
In Thursday’s game, Llandudno maintained their unbeaten start to the season with a 2-2 draw against newcomers Prestatyn. Goals from Danny Hughes and Lee Thomas were cancelled out by Jack Kenny and Ben Maher. In front of a bumper crowd, both sides played out an entertaining game as the game was broadcasted live on Sgorio’s Facebook. Positive signs for both sides as they aim to kick on from last season and ensure survival respectively.
The New Saints 4-0 Cefn Druids
After their opening day defeat to Bangor City, people began to question the reigning champions. And Mike Harris’ warning that they will surprise people rings especially true after Friday’s result. Goals from Jamie Mullan, Greg Draper, Chris Seargent and Simon Spender were evidence of TNS’ undeniable quality. However, for Druids it’s back to the drawing board, but playing the champions is never easy.
Connah’s Quay 1-0 Bala Town
Second against third proved to be as tight as last season’s league table would suggest. Despite Bala’s dominance in the first half, Mike Wilde’s 43rd minute goal was enough to secure all three points. But it wouldn’t have been three had it not been for Andy Morrison’s men’s resolute defending after they were reduced to ten men after the hour mark.
Barry Town United 2-0 Newtown
Barry secured their maiden win in the 2017/18 JD Welsh Premier League season thanks to a brace from new striker Kayne McLaggon. However, their win was marred by an injury to fellow newcomer Ryan Newman, which was confirmed as an ankle break following the victory.
Bangor City 1-0 Carmarthen Town
Carmarthen continued their travels as they await the completion of their new 3G playing surface, and so does their wait for their first points of the season. Bangor maintained their excellent start to the season under Kevin Nicholson as a Laurence Wilson strike was enough to land the Citizens another three points.
Aberystwyth Town 0-2 Cardiff Met
Cardiff Met’s start to the season may have gone slightly under the radar given the excellent starts by Llandudno and Bangor City, but another three points away from home will ensure the push themselves to the fore of supporters’ minds. Two own goals credited to Aber’s John McKenna were enough to condemn the hosts to another loss, but for Met it’s another excellent result.
The table doesn’t look any clearer after this weekend’s round of games, with just one point separating top place Llandudno from fifth placed Bangor City. However, the competition is fiercer than ever at the top and the fight to avoid the drop looks to be an intriguing one already.
(Featured Image: EventPhotoWales)