How former Welsh system players got on in the opening day

Football well and truly is back. August 3rd marked the beginning of the Football League in England, with Reading v Derby kicking off what is set to be another tasty season in both English and Welsh domestic football. 

But, despite football staying on hold for another week in the Welsh domestic system, there was a sense of intrigue as fans watched on to see how former Welsh system players got on in the opening day of the new season.

We take a look at some of the biggest names to have played in the Welsh system and how they fared this weekend.

Christian Doidge – Forest Green Rovers

Forest Green Rovers striker Christian Doidge couldn’t have got off to a better start to his League 2 campaign. In a 4-1 win, the former Barry, Carmarthen, Cwmbran and Croesyceiliog striker netted a brace against Grimsby Town. The 25 year-old will be hoping to emulate his 15 league goals last term in the fourth tier of English football.


Connell Rawlinson – Port Vale

Former The New Saints defender Connell Rawlinson started and played the full 90 minutes for new club Port Vale today. The centre-half left the Welsh champions this summer, and linked up with the League 2 outfit. But the move seems to have paid dividends, as the Vale got off to a 3-0 win to kick off their season.

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Scott Quigley – Port Vale

Blackpool striker Scott Quigley joined Port Vale on loan earlier this summer, after his move to Blackpool last summer from JD Welsh Premier League champions TNS. The frontman was joined at the Vale by former team-mate Connell Rawlinson, but the forward failed to come off from the bench in their 3-0 opening day victory.

Callum Sainty – Hereford 

Barry attacking outlet Callum Sainty departed the Welsh Premier League side for Vanarma National Legaue North side Hereford FC this summer. The winger joined Barry from Caerau Ely and helped the side return to the top flight of Welsh football, however he was an unused substitute for his new club as the Bulls ran out 3-0 winners over Blyth Spartans today.

Gwion Edwards – Ipswich Town

Gwion Edwards couldn’t have made a better impact at his new club, Ipswich Town, as he scored the opening goal on his competitive debut in a 2-2 draw with Blackburn Rovers. The player spent three years at Aberystwyth Town’s academy in his formative years, and a Wales call-up wouldn’t be too far beyond the realms of possibility if he maintains his opening day form for a sustained period.


Tom Bradshaw – Barnsley 

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Barnsley frontman Tom Bradshaw is another who hails from Aberystwyth’s academy system. The Welsh international has proven his worth in the Football League the last few years, banging in 17 goals in League One in consecutive seasons with Walsall, before he made the switch to Championship outfit Barnsley. The Tykes were 4-0 victors today, but Bradshaw didn’t manage to get on the scoresheet.

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Gary Roberts – Wigan Athletic

Attacking midfielder Gary Roberts will be a familiar name to many Welsh football fans. After his release from Liverpool, he spent his formative years in the youth sides of both Denbigh Town and Rhyl. In 2003, he made the move to Rhyl for a short spell before making the switch to Bangor for one season. However, his greatest success was his two seasons at Welshpool Town. In the 2004-05 season, he netted nine goals in eight appearances for the club before making the switch to Accrington Stanley. The attacking outlet was an unused sub as the Latics defeated Sheffield Wednesday in their Championship opener.

Sam Finley – Accrington Stanley 

Former TNS midfielder Sam Finley made his League One debut today, as he came on as a 62nd minute substitute in Accrington Stanley’s 2-0 defeat to Gillingham Town.



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