South Wales FA 1-2 Amateurs FYR Macedonia: Professional Macedonia earn first points of Regions Cup against South Wales at Jenner Park
Wales suffered their first defeat in the UEFA Regions Cup as Amateurs FYR Macedonia provided to be too strong for the Red Dragons.
Antonio Lukarov finished off a lovely flowing move for the Macedonians first of the game, before he turned provider as Toni Mirchevski polished off another sublime team goal from Marjan Jovanovski’s side.
Christopher Quick pulled a goal back as he fired home late on, but Amateurs FYR Macedonia held on to secure all three points at Jenner Park.
Wales will now host Evia in their final game, where they will be looking to respond from their first defeat of the competition – kick-off is at the slightly earlier time of four o’clock on Sunday 10th June.
It was Macedonia who looked lively on the attack in the opening few moments as Marjan Ristovski played in Vladamir Zhoglev, but the ball was comfortably collected by Stephen Price in Wales’ goals.
But on the counter-attack, Wales had a superb chance to take the lead but Christopher Colvin-Owens’ effort was blocked superbly before Adam Jenkins snapped his shot over Mirza Durakovikj’s bar.
Ivan Galevski had the visitors first real chance of the game as he slid in behind Wales’ backline, but a fantastic goal-saving challenge from Richard Noyes prevented Galevski getting a shot away as the ball went behind for a corner.
The visitors continued to press the Wales backline as forward Vladimir Zhoglev tried his luck from just outside the box, but his effort was tremendously saved by Price as he put it behind for a corner.
Zhoglev then played a sublime ball in towards Galevski, but his effort was dealt with by Price, who was having a fine start to the game in wet conditions, in South Wales.
Wales then had a chance of their own as Andre Phillips auctioned some space for himself, before firing his effort towards goal, but it was a fine block from Bojan Rajkov who put the ball behind for a corner for the Red Dragons.
Wales then had their best opportunity of the game as Adam Jenkins found some time and space on the edge of the area, before firing a shot away, which narrowly went past Durakovikj’s posts.
The Macedonians then produced the move of the match as substitute Antonio Lukarov flicked it on towards Zhoglev, who then squared it to Lukarov, but his shot was expertly blocked to deny Marjan Jovanovski’s side the lead at Jenner Park.
Macedonia’s captain then had an explosive drive from 35-yards out, but Price read the shot well and collected with ease as he continued to control his box with authority and calmness in a half which the visitors were slightly edging proceedings in the Vale of Glamorgan.
Marjan Ristovski played through Galevski as the visitors continued to play on the front-foot, but his effort was superbly blocked by Noyes courtesy of more first-rate defending.
But up the other end, Jenkins had Wales’ first chance of the half, but his effort was always fading over the bar, but it was much more like it from the Red Dragons.
It was the visitors who took the lead courtesy of a brilliant flowing move from the visitors as Nikola Risteski played a wonderful ball out wide to full-back Bojan Rajkov, who squared it for a tap-in for substitute Lukarov, who made no mistake in giving Jovanovski’s side a deserved lead.
The visitors were very much in control of proceedings in Barry – and almost doubled their lead, but Galevski’s header went agonisingly wide of Price’s posts.
Macedonia then doubled their lead as Toni Mirchevski made an instant impact as he scored with his very first touch after being played in by Lukarov for another tap-in for the visitors.
Mirchevski then played the ball into Zhoglev, who had a superb chance to put the game to bed, but his effort was wasted as he snapped at his shot, which rose over Price’s crossbar.
Christopher Quick pulled a goal back for South Wales, but it was little too late as Macedonia picked up their first points of the Regions Cup with a deserved win in the Vale of Glamorgan.
(Featured image: Lewis Mitchell)