Huws Gray Fitlock Cymru Alliance League - Wednesday, August 28th
Llangefni Town .......... 0 Porthmadog .......... 1
Gareth Parry 67
Porthmadog emerged from this tense and often bruising game with their
100 per cent record intact and still without conceding a goal in the four
matches played. Though two of the leading promotion challengers, the teams
have enjoyed contrasting fortunes in the opening games and this put pressure
on both sides. The early play was scrappy with route one being the main
attacking strategy, which was surprising since neither side possessed a tall
target man.The ball was in the air a great deal with neither side able to
exert any real control and establish a pattern to their play.
There was an early break into the box by Matthew Hughes for the visitors
but he failed to get his shot in and the ball was scrambled clear. Almost
immediately there was a counter-attack but Danny Hughes was on hand at the
near post to clear Darren Pritchard's effort on goal. The closest either
side came to scoring in the opening half came,after 22 mins when a fine ball
out of defence by Mike Foster for Port put Matthew Hughes through, and the
attacker cleverly turned his marker but his shot on goal was turned around
the post by keeper McGuigan. After 38 mins Dave Farr was unlucky after a
good turn in the box but his shot took a deflection and flew over the home
A rather frenetic first half ended without a goal and neither side
appeared to have the composure or the patience to build up attacks and give
the game some width. The same was true in the early part of the second-half
and this only changed when Steve Pugh was introduced. his pace along the
right flank soon tested the home defence.Port survived a quick counter by
the home side as Gwyn Peters took advantage of the space he was given to
threaten in the box, but good defensive work by Lee Webber saved the day.
After 67 mins Pugh proved to be the match-winner with a speedy break along
the right taking the ball to the bye-line, before ignoring Farr's decoy run
to the near post and rolling the ball back into the path of Gareth Parry
following in. The newcomer from Llanfairpwll coolly tapped the ball past
McGuigan to record his third goal in three appearances. Like his goal at
Amlwch, in the opening game of the season, this also proved decisive.
This might have been the end of the scoring but not the end of the
action or the tension. Although he had rarely been in the action Richard
Harvey, in the visitors goal, was called upon to make a superb 76th min near
post save from Graham Austin's powerful shot from the left of the box.Then
as Llangefni threw everything into attack the visitors conceded an 81st min
free-kick on the edge of the box. The wall stood firm but an ensuing drive
on goal polaxed defender Lee Webber who, after lengthy treatment, was able
to continue. Port's defence held out thanks to outstanding performances by
the back four of Harrison, Danny Hughes, Lee Webber and Mike Foster.
The final whistle brought relief to the visitors, in a game where the
result was more important than the performance. It is a result which
increases the gap between the two promotion rivals to 8 points.
Llangefni: McGuigan, Jatt, Jason Thomas, John Roberts, Martin Bohana, Andrew
Wagstaffe, Corey Sinnott, Darren Pritchard, Gwyn Peters, Jason Saddler,
Subs: Richard Evans, Tryfan Prosser, Gerallt Jones.
Port: Richard Harvey, C Harrison, Danny Hughes, Lee Webber, Mike
Foster(capt), Tony Williams(Carl Owen), Dafydd Evans, Gareth Parry, Iwan
Roberts (Richard Hughes), Matthew Hughes( Steve Pugh), Dave Farr.
Huws Gray Fitlock Cymru Alliance League -Saturday, August24th.
Porthmadog ............. 2 Halkyn United .......... 0
Lee Webber 56
Dafydd Evans 80(pen)
Three straight wins and three clean sheets put Port at the top of the
Alliance table, but they made heavy weather of today's game -a game which
they should have made well and truly secure in the opening half-hour. As it
turned out it took them 56 mins before they got their noses in front and
they kept their supporters on tenterhooks until the 80th min before they
made the game safe. Despite not scoring during the opening half the depleted
Port side served up some excellent approach play with their back-four,
albeit with changes in personnel, again in complete charge with many of the
best moves being started by Mike Foster who despatched several pin point 35
New signing Steve Cooper showed his worth as early as the 10th min. with
a break on the left, but his low cross into the box was not capitalised
upon. A minute later and Dave Farr headed a Harrison pass into the path of
Tony Williams whose low shot was well saved by Tyrrell in the visitors goal.
Two clear chances to head Port ahead came near the 20 min. mark when first
Dave Farr headed over and Iwan Roberts, when it seemed he must score, headed
Tony Williams' far post cross narrowly past the post.
On a rare Halkyn break forward into the box the visitors had their
strident appeals, that Darren Horne had been brought down, refused by
referee Beech. After this Port continued to dominate but the goal would not
come. A good run followed by a drive from 18 yds by Matthew Hughes went past
the upright. Just before the interval good breaks on the left first by
Ritchie Owen and then by Steve Cooper came to nothing.
Eventually Port went ahead and, for the third consecutive game, it was a
goal from a Mike Foster corner which broke the deadlock. This time his far
post kick was powerfully met by his back-four partner Lee Webber. Just three
mins later and a speculative shot by Sweet almost caught Port out and struck
the angle of the bar before boucing to safety.
Still Port's fine creative play produced the chances but equally
regularly they were spurned. Twice Steve Cooper found himself in space
behind the defence but his lobs failed to beat the keeper. Dave Farr was
wide of the mark having been put through by Tony Williams and Dafydd Evans
drove narrowly wide from 20 yds following another break by Cooper.
After 80 mins came the goal which settled the match and inevitably it
came from a set piece. Matthew Hughes sent Dave Farr through on the left but
as he entered the box he was brought down by Darren Wild's clumsy challenge.
From the spot Dafydd Evans was as accurate as ever, sending Tyrrell the
Though the margin was far closer than it should have been Port will be
pleased that a game where they were down in squad terms, to their bare bones
due to injuries, work and holiday commitments, has resulted in a victory
which sees them, after only three fixtures, as the only side with a 100%
Port: Richard Harvey, Campbell, Harrison, Mike Foster, Lee Webber, Ritchie
Owen, Dafydd Evans, Steve Cooper, Iwan Roberts, Tony Williams. Mathew
Hughes, Dave Farr.
Halkyn Utd. Alan Tyrrell, John Haseldine, Darren Jones, Darren Wild, Julian
Jones, Darren Horne, Nick Henderson, Dave Sweet, Gareth Thomas, Darren
Edwards, Stuart Wood.
Subs: Keith Davies, Simon Williams, Lee Blythin.
Huws Garay Fitlock Cymru Alliance League -Wednesday, August 21st
Porthmadog ............. 4 Llanfairpwll ................. 0
Gareth Parry 51
Dafydd Evans 59 (pen)
Dave Farr 75, 84
The second-half produced an amazing transformation after a goalless
first-half. In the opening period the home side produced some excellent
passing movements starting from the back with all of the back four in fine
form but failed to turn the advantage into goals. Port applied the early
presure and forced a corner as early as the second min and Iwan Roberts came
close in the 5th min following good work by Tony Williams and Ritchie Owen.
Despite the good play the home side failed to open their account and they
almost paid for this after 25 mins when a Port move broke down and defender
Geraint Evans, for the visitors, burst forward and found Lord free on the
left but the striker's shot rolled across the face of the goal to safety.
This seemed to spur on the home side and skipper Mike Foster got to the
bye-line before slipping the ball inside for Iwan Roberts whose shot struck
the bar before bouncing to safety. The closest Port came to scoring after
this was a Lee Webber thunderbolt, following a Mike Foster corner, which
also struck the bar and cannoned to safety.
The second period saw the introduction of Steve Pugh and Dave Farr.
Though Iwan Roberts can count himself unlucky to be taken off, the
substitutions certainly had the desired effect. Pugh made an immediate
impact with a burst along the right only to be pulled down. In the 51st min
another Pugh run and a low cross into the box found Gareth Parry, who scored
his second goal of the season from 12 yds and this time against his former
club.. Port were now in full charge with Dafydd Evans outstanding creating
space for himself in midfield and pulling all the strings.After 51 mins Tony
Williams, another ex-Llanfairpwll player, was brought down in the box and
Dafydd Evans coolly converted the penalty.
Port now threatened to score with every attack and Gareth Parry and
Ritchie Owen came close. After 75 mins came the game's best goal when Dave
Farr was put through on the left near the halfway line before bursting
forward and cutting into the the box where he drew the keeper and sent a low
shot into the net. The home side completed the second-half rout with a
second Dave Farr goal this time with a well-timed leap to nod in sub Jason
Jones' accurate cross.
Llanfairpwll despite being under pressure during the second period
contributed to an exciting came and came close on a couple of occasions. The
first when Lord latched on to a good ball into the box, but his shot was
narrowly wide and close to the end when sub Rhys Evans shot past the post
following a melee in the home box.
The visitors conceded four for the second time this season but the home
side have collected six points without conceding a goal. Next Saturday
Halkyn will provide a stern test of Port's promotion potential.
Port: Richard Harvey, John G. Jones, Danny Hughes, Lee Webber, Mike Foster,
Dafydd Evans, Gareth Parry, Ritchie Owen, Iwan Roberts(Steve Pugh), Matthew
Hughes(Dave Farr), Tony Williams(Jason Jones).
Llanfairpwll: Partington, Sion Parry, Geraint Roberts, Colin Redmayne,
Geraint Evans,. Gwynedd Jones, Osian Roberts, Aled Miguity, Chris Lord,
Gethin Williams, Arwel Evans.
Subs: Rhys Evans, Mike Jones, Darren Moore.
In the season opener Porthmadog visited the spruced up Lon Bach ground
of newly promoted Amlwch Town. From the start the game's most influential
factor was the very strong wind that blew across the ground making passing
and ball control something of a lottery. The visitors dominated the
possession from start to finish but clearly goal-scoring was going to be a
problem as their starting line-up lacked the four leading scorers from last
Port came close to opening the scoring in the 8th min when a 30 yd
free-kick from Mike Foster swirled past Roberts' left hand upright. Their
other best opportunities came from two well floated Mike Foster corners. The
visitors failed to capitalise and were lucky not to concede when Andy
Macbeth burst through on the counter-attack and would surely have scored but
for a poor touch in the box when he had only the keeper to beat. On the
half-hour it took two perfectly timed tackles, one at either end, to prevent
goals. First Matthew Hughes for Port ran storngly into the box only to be
stopped by Ben Jones and almost immediately, at the other end, it took a
timely intervention by Danny Hughes to keep out Adrian Jones.
The second-half continued in the same mould as the first with Port
having the territorial advantage but failing to turn this into goals.Dafydd
Evans with a good ball over the defence created a chance for Tony Williams
and soon after Matthew Hughes headed over following an accurate Ritchie Owen
cross. Just after the hour mark was reached came the solitary goal which was
to decide the match. Almost inevitably it came courtesy of a Mike Foster
corner which was touched on by Mattew Hughes for Gareth Parry, the newcomer
from Llanfairpwll, to head past Roberts from close range.
Though Gareth Parry came close again with a shot which flew past the
angle and Ritchie Owen tested Tony Roberts with a shot from the edge of the
box, Port failed to make the game safe. True to form they gave their
supporters a mighty scare at the end, when the defence failed to clear
allowing sub Alan Roberts a clear shot on goal. Fortunately Port keeper
Richard Harvey, who had been a virtual spectator for 89 mins, was alert to
the situation and pulled off a fine save tipping over a screamer.
Port manager, Viv Williams, will be relieved that despite a lack lustre
performance in the windy conditions, three away points were secured. Tom
Charlton, his counterpart at Amlwch, will be glad to get the first match
under his belt and will feel that his team will be able to compete at this
Amlwch : Tony Roberts, Ben Jones(capt), Stewart Williams, Andy Macbeth,
Ritchie Jones, Tony Jackson, Adrian Jones, Dylan Roberts, Kyle Hazelaar,
Andy Roberts, Darren Thomas.
Subs: Mervyn Williams, Alan Roberts, Andrew Stewart.
Port: Richard Harvey, John G. Jones, Danny Hughes, Lee Webber, Mike
Foster(capt), Dafydd Evans, Gareth Parry, Ritchie Owen, Iwan Roberts,
Matthew Hughes( Steve Pugh), Tony Williams( Jason Jones).
Subnot used: Campbell Harrison.
Porthmadog ....1 Flexys Cefn Druids..... 0
Lee Webber 30
A Lee Webber header powered in at the far post, from a typical Mike Foster
corner, separated the two sides at the end. But for an outstanding
performance by their keeper Dave Blower, the League of Wales side, would
have slumped to a far heavier defeat. For the home side, Matthew Hughes
turned in another excellent performance. The victory will give Port added
confidence as they face their first league outing at newly promoted Amlwch
Porthmadog .......3 Welshpool .............. 1
Dave Farr 27,73. Steve Bird 43
John Gwynfor Jones 89.
John Gwynfor's 89 min goal made the scoreline a fairer reflection of the
90 mins of football. Neither side were at their strongest but clearly
Welshpool suffered the most from the absences for Port dominated the game
from start to finish. The home side could easily have been two up in the
first 10 mins when first Farr and then Hughes were put through but failed to
find the net.
Eventually Port did take the lead, after 27 mins, when Lee Webber made a
rare sortee into the visitors penalty area and underlined the value of a
tall man in the box, when he met a left wing cross with a fine cushioned
header into the path of Dave Farr who drove low past Goodwin. Welshpool
survived two more close calls when Goodwin pulled off a good save to keep
out Hughes and then blocked a power shot from John Gwynfor.
Just before the interval Port paid for the failure to turn pressure into
goals, when they were slow to to clear their lines, and Bird fired a shot
into the crowded box which took a huge deflection and entered the net.
Harvey in the home goal, who had hitherto been redundant, could only stand
and watch. A minute later and the visitors could have gone ahead when Webber
was adjudged to have fouled in the box. Kinsey's penalty was well saved, by
Harvey, low at his left hand post.
The second -half was much the same as the first with Port retaining
possession for long periods and Goodwin was soon in action again foiling
Farr after he had turned inside Kinsey in the box. Then Iwan Roberts struck
the top of the bar from 20 yds but there was no addition to the score until
the 77 min. Iwan Roberts broke on the right and fed debutant Tony Williams
who in turn slipped the ball to the unmarked Farr, who coolly doubled his
tallyand put Port back in front.That is how the score remained until John
Gwynfor burst through the visitors off-side trap and from 20 yds fired past
the helpless Goodwin.
Port: Harvey, John Gwynfor, Danny Hughes( Campbell Harrison), Lee Webber,
Mike Foster, Dafydd Evans, Gareth Parry (Irfon Hughes), Ritchie Owen, Iwan
Roberts, Dave Farr, Matthew Hughes( Tony Williams)
Porthmadog ..... 1 Sheffield Wednesday ........ 2
Carl Owen 71 Lewis McMahon 25
Matty Shaw 47
A young Wednesday side managed by Mike Rigg, former Welsh Youth
Technical Director, provided Port with another stern pre-season testing.
Reporting on the game was not made easy by lack of numbers on the visitors
shirts. The young professionals showed good control and passing skills
denying the home side possession for long spells. Wednesday came close
after 17 mins when Lewis McMahon broke on the left but his shot crossed
the face of the goal. After 25 mins the same player made the most of a
poor defensive header and sent a powerful low shot past Harvey's left hand
to put the visitors ahead.
Two mins later and Port had their best opportunity, to date, when Pugh
linked up with John Gwynfor and put in a long cross which was returned by
Iwan Roberts. Wednesday scrambled clear under pressure from Farr. Another
Pugh cross saw Iwan Roberts forcing Ogden into producing a good diving
save. This was only a temporary respite for the home side as Richard
Harvey, in the home goal, was called upon to make a string of good saves
to keep Port in the game. Harvey also acquited himself well under pressure
Only two mins into the second period and Wednesday increased their
lead when the home defence was caught out by a long ball out of defence
which allowed Matty Shaw through for a simple tap-in. Wednesday continued
to dominate but just after the hour Campbell Harrison was introduced into
central defence allowing Danny Hughes to move to midfield. This produced a
better balance and Port enjoyed their best period of the match. After 64
mins Carl Owen broke on the left of the box but his shot went narrowly
wide. Soon Pugh was breaking down the right and his cross was flicked past
the post. Then after 71 mins Matthew Hughes capitalised on a defensive
error to create an opening for Carl Owen who lobbed coolly into the
Wednesday net. Port now pressed for the equaliser and Matthew Hughes
header from a Webber free-kick tested Ogden.
The goal would not come and in the end the visitors claimed a narrow
but deserved victory.
Port: Richard Harvey, John G Jones, Danny Hughes, Lee Webber, Richie Owen,
Gareth Parry( Jason Jones), Dafydd Evans(Irfon Hughes), Iwan Roberts
(Campbell Harrison), Steve Pugh, Dave Farr( Matthew Hughes), Carl Owen.
Sheffield Wed. Ogden, Wood, Lowe, Jon Shaw, Orlik, Stevenson, Palmieri,
Betanovic, McMahon, Matty Shaw, Ekoku. Subs, Santili, Hill, King.
Following the thrashing against Wrexham, Port would have been looking
for a far better result against League of Wales side Rhyl. A small crowd
(not helped by the £4 admission charge) saw a competitive game between two
evenly matched sides.
The game started quietly with very few chances in the first 15
minutes. After 16 minutes John Gwynfor saw his long range shot fly past the
Rhyl post with Steve Fulcher going close for the home side a few minutes
later. Rhyl had their best period of the game during the last 15 minutes of
the half. On the half hour Lee Webber was nearly left blushing after a
defensive header brushed past his own post. Danny McTaggert saw his shot go
just over the bar and Harvey, in the Port goal, was forced to save well from
Joe Maguire. Port would have been happy to go in at half time with the
scores still level - Viv Williams would have been concerned about the gaps
left in their defence.
Port started the second half in far better form than they finished
the first. They had the majority of the possession for the first 25 minutes,
but rarely looked that threatening in front of goal. Indeed it was Rhyl who
nearly scored after 26 minutes - Danny McTaggert shooting just wide after
Campbell Harrison was caught napping in the visitors defence. Matthew
Hughes, who had a good game for Port, saw his shot blocked by a last ditch
challenge following a great run by John Gwynfor Jones.
The only goal of the game came after 35 minutes. Carl Owen's shot
from the edge of the box found its way into the back of the net. Joe
Maguire's long range effort four minutes later was the closest Rhyl came to
equalising, but the ball flew over the bar.
Port manager Viv Williams will be happy with this performance -
matching a League of Wales side for most of the game. The biggest concern
may be the amount of space the defence afforded to the Rhyl attackers -
especially at the end of the first half.
Porthmadog ............ 0 Wrexham.............. 6
With the visitors putting out what was virtually their first team it was
very soon apparent that Porthmadog were to be in for a torrid evening. The
home side included three new signings Richard Harvey in goal from Cemaes
Bay, Richard Owen who was on Bangor's books and Gareth Parry from
Llanfairpwll. From the outset the Nationwide League side applied the
pressure and enjoyed almost unlimited possession. Carlos Edwards was a
constant threat down the right and after only 10 mins good work by him and
Lee Trundle created an opening for Hector Sam who fired high into the net
from 10 yds.
A minute later and Trundle himself was on the scoresheet capitalising on
an error on the left and chipping the ball over the keeper into the net.
Port, though they managed to force a corner after 16 mins, were rarely a
threat with the whole team having to defend leaving Carl Owen and Farr
isolated up front. After 22 mins Trundle doubled his tally with a fine
curling shot from the edge of the box which Harvey could only help on its
way into the the top corner of the net.
Wrexham's fourth came after 34 mins when Harvey was caught off his line
and four mins later supplier Carlos Edwards became a scorer himself when he
took advantage of another defensive lapse to break into the box and finish
Having established a five goal advantage Wrexham completely changed
their team for the second period with a mixture of young players, trialists
and the experienced trio of Brian Carey, Wayne Phillips and Lee Jones
together with new keeper Andrew Dibble. As the half wore on the home side
recovered some of their composure and kept possession sufficiently to create
one or two openings. These included a good run by Carl Owen down the left
finishing with a shot from a narrow angle, a shot which tested Dibble from
Steve Pugh and some useful passes from Gareth Parry from midfield.
Wrexham had the final say, however when Lee Jones capitalised on another
defensive lapse to to drive past Harvey from the left of the box. Next
Thursday(7p.m.) Port entertain Sheffield Wednesday.