Six of the Very Best: North Wales football Saturday previews

Flint Town United in action at Llandudno (stripes) last weekend. Picture: Graham George, Flint Town United website

Flint Town United v Prestatyn Town
Cymru North – Saturday 2.30 pm

No doubting what is the biggest match of the weekend involving two North Wales teams – the Cymru North top of the table clash between Flint Town United and Prestatyn Town.

It promises to be an absolute cracker at the Essity Stadium, with table-toppers Prestatyn five points clear at the summit and seven ahead of third-place Flint, who have a game in hand on the Seasiders.

Both teams have lost just once in the league and the pair have made tremendous progress in the Nathaniel MG Cup, where Flint will visit Connah’s Quay Nomads in the quarter-finals, and Prestatyn are home to either Bala Town or Bangor City.

Neil Gibson’s Prestatyn side have banged in 34 goals in nine games, while Niall McGuinness’ Flint have netted a none-too-shabby 21 from eight.

Both teams have conceded just seven goals apiece.

Ritchie Foulkes and Callum Bratley should return for the Silkmen, but still doubtful are Alex Titchener and Andy Brown. All missed last Saturday’s 1-1 draw at Llandudno.

Prestatyn assistant-manager Martin Jones believes it is way too early to suggest Saturday’s game will have any bearing on the eventual destiny of the league title.

“To call it a title decider is a bit premature to say the least,” he said. “It’s only October, there’s lots of games to go, there’s some very good sides in this league and they will all take points off each other.”

Martin added: “The lads have trained really well, the players are looking forward it. They realise the massive importance of this game and are really focused.”

Bangor City v Llanrhaeadr-ym-Mochnant
Cymru North – Saturday, 2.30 pm

A recent Bangor City line-up. Picture: Bangor City FC Facebook page

It is hard to forecast anything that might happen where Bangor City are concerned at present.

Even by their own somewhat unpredictable standards of recent times, the goings-on at Nantporth lately have been somewhat bizarre.

Buoyed by a remarkable victory over Welsh Premier champions The New Saints on September 24 in the Nathaniel MG Cup, three days later the roof fell in for the Citizens when they crashed 7-0 at Prestatyn Town in a league game and had three players sent off.

Manager Stephen Vaughan Jnr resigned on Monday this week and the following night City took on Colwyn Bay in a Cymru North game which was abandoned with less than 20 minutes left due to a floodlight failure.

The rumour mill has been working overtime over the past few days as to who Vaughan Jnr’s replacement might be.

It is believed an announcement is imminent this weekend and in the meantime Bangor have the small matter of Llanrhaeadr-ym-Mochnant to deal with today (Saturday).

The Powys club have ripped up almost all of the scripts this term and currently lie second in the table against the odds.

What sort of team will Bangor put out? Have some players departed on the back of Vaughan Jr’s exit? Rumours everywhere, but few announcements from the club as yet.

Will the football take centre stage today? Perhaps.

Porthmadog v Ruthin Town
Cymru North – Saturday, 2.30 pm

Porthmadog (green) take on Conwy Borough earlier this season. Picture: Aled Wyn Jones

The phrases “too good to go down” or “in a false position” are often used in football these days when a team is unexpectedly in trouble.

In Porthmadog’s case, those words do hold some credence. Their squad looks strong, with a nice blend of youth and experience, and the club has a management team with good pedigree.

Unfortunately, there is another saying “the table never lies” which rings true for Port right now.

No wins in eight, bottom of the standings with just a point to their name.

They really need that first win of the campaign, and there would be no better time to get it than today at home to Ruthin.

In Port’s defence, they have faced a lot of very powerful teams so far, but it is also the case that no easy games really exist at this level.

This afternoon’s opponents Ruthin are mid-table, performing well under new manager Chris Hardy, and will certainly be going for the points at Y Traeth.

Can this be the day where Port finally get it together? It needs to happen sooner rather than later.

Gwalchmai v Holyhead Town
Lock Stock Welsh Alliance Division Two (Saturday, 2.30 pm)

Can Gwalchmai overcome the difficult challenge of Holyhead Town at Maes Meurig?

Great contest in store between two well-established names on Anglesey.

Holyhead are second in the Division Two table with Gwalchmai down in ninth, but just five points separate them.

Last week Town came up against Holyhead Hotspur’s formidable strike force in a 3-1 Welsh Cup defeat, but the up-front pairing of Marc Evans and Corey Sinnott for Gwalchmai will take some stopping too.

The Harbourmen have their own deadly duo Asa Thomas and Gary Jo Owen in attack – 25 goals between them already this season.

This one could end up an epic with plenty of goals.

Rhydymwyn v Cefn Albion
Guy Walmsley Welsh National League Premier Division Cup (Saturday, 2.30 pm)

Albion have already lost their grip on the FAW Trophy – are they about to become former holders of the Premier Division Cup too?

Last season’s double cup winners have made an erratic start to the 2019-20 campaign and will find the challenge of Rhydymwyn at Vicarage Road far from easy today.

Rhyd celebrated a great win at Saltney in the Welsh Cup last weekend, while Albion crashed out of the competition 5-4 at home to previously winless Chirk AAA on the same day.

Brymbo Victoria v Caerwys
Top Mark Uniforms North East Wales League (Saturday, 2 pm)

Caerwys managers Jordan Hadaway (left) and Ethan Jones

Despite facing some tough challenges already this season, Brymbo Vics remain unbeaten in eight matches and sit at the pinnacle of the North East Wales League.

Today comes another big hurdle in the shape of Caerwys.

Jordan Hadaway and Ethan Jones’ side have played just three league matches this term and won the lot, scoring 17 goals and conceding just the one.

If Vics are still undefeated by the final whistle this afternoon, they will have done really well once more and proved again they are title material.

Copyright Dave Jones © All rights reserved. CoverNews by AF themes.
%d bloggers like this: