Women’s football weekend previews – let’s all pray for luck with the weather

Can Llanberis hit the ground running when they return to action on Sunday?

North Wales Women’s Football League fixtures – Sunday, January 19

Division One

Airbus v Wrexham, Bethel v Denbigh Town, Llanfair United v Rhyl.

Division Two

Amlwch Town v Pwllheli, Holywell v Mountain Rangers, NFA v Caernarfon Town, Penrhyn Bay v Llanberis.

Let’s just hope, more than anything, that everyone gets to play this weekend.

The weather has been atrocious, and always seems to save its worst for Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

If a men’s game is played on a Friday or Saturday, the pitch is often so badly cut up, that if the women have a match on the same surface on the Sunday, it is unplayable.

There is a saying ‘some guys have all the luck‘. Well, there’s a new saying in North Wales women’s football: ‘our girls have no luck‘. Let’s hope that changes soon.

Division One (1 pm kick-offs unless stated)

Airbus v Wrexham (12 noon kick-off)

Becky Lees (red) is top scorer for Airbus this season

Having won 6-0 at Wrexham last October, Airbus will be targeting a league double over their Division One rivals this weekend.

The Wingmakers will enter the game full of confidence, having caused a big upset in knocking Bethel out of the Betty Pickering Cup by a 4-0 margin last Sunday.

On the mark twice in that game was promising youngster Tegan Hewitt, who has now scored six goals in the campaign.

She will aim to maintain that form on Sunday, alongside fellow two-goal star of the Bethel win, Katelyn Tilston.

Airbus are still without inspirational midfielder and captain Abby Williams, indeed the Wingmakers have had no luck at all with injuries for some time.

But that result against Bethel should serve as a real lift.

Wrexham are bottom and have yet to register a point in four games.

They will be hoping to end that sequence soon and there would be no better time to start than on Sunday.

Note the earlier kick-off time.

Bethel v Denbigh Town

Not playing – but for a really good reason: Bethel captain Gwenno Gibbard-Bolton (and she’s still watching)

Unbeaten in the league, Bethel had a rude awakening in the Betty Pickering Cup last weekend when they were whipped 4-0 at Airbus.

Ben Bolton’s side will be looking to bounce back on Sunday, but that will be far from easy against a Denbigh outfit who have started the season strongly.

The game should bring into opposition two of the best net-finders in North Wales – Town’s 17-goal ace Rosie Hughes and Bethel speed machine Ffion Williams, who has 10 to her name so far this term.

If both sides are at their best this should be one of the games of the day.

One player who will not be appearing for Bethel any time soon is captain and midfield general Gwenno Gibbard-Bolton. It’s not bad news, though, the skipper is expecting her first child! Good luck to her and husband Ben.

Llanfair United v Rhyl

Gemma Jones scored the winner for Llanfair at Rhyl last October. She has also netted most league goals in Division One. Pic: Ian Francis

Here’s a rematch to truly savour.

Back in October, Llanfair edged a 2-1 win at Rhyl, but the home side deserved at least a draw, having a penalty saved in added time.

The Lilywhites were superb that day, and have been showing real quality all season.

A tough task awaits them, however, at Llanfair, who are top of the table with five straight wins.

Many good players on either side here and one or two of them could make a massive difference.

Division Two (1 pm kick-offs)

Amlwch Town v Pwllheli

Who stars for Amlwch this weekend? It could be anyone, such as evergreen sports star Meinir Thomas (blue)

This weekend, it will be five weeks since Amlwch had a game.

Like many teams, they have suffered from the effects of the Christmas break, and awful weather postponing matches.

If the Anglesey side can pick up where they left off, they will be fine.

A magnificent squad has been assembled at Lon Bach this term, resulting in Town remaining unbeaten and topping Division Two with six wins and a draw, having netted 65 goals in just seven games.

It is a daunting task for Pwllheli, who at full strength can give anyone a good game, but often struggle for players when having away fixtures and this Sunday could be one of those occasions.

Both sides have scored goals in abundance this campaign. Amlwch beat Pwllheli 8-3 away earlier in the season.

Holywell v Mountain Rangers

Katie Bowe cannot wait to get some minutes on the field with Mountain Rangers after a 10-week delay

Mountain Rangers have probably had it worse than anyone when it comes to not getting to play.

By my records, the Llamas have not kicked a competitive ball since November 10, when they lost to Denbigh Town in the NEWFA Cup. If they play this Sunday, it will be their first game in 10 weeks. That’s nearly two sets of school summer holidays!!!

It’s not been much better for opponents Holywell. They have not played a NWWFL fixture since December 1, when they were beaten heavily at Amlwch.

The first priority for Rangers and the Wellwomen will be just to get on the field. From there, they will surely enjoy just getting a match under their belts.

When they last met on September 15, Rangers won 14-1 with Katie Bowe scoring seven. That remains the league’s highest individual tally this season.

NFA v Caernarfon Town

Llinos Hughes is a defensive star for NFA

Second-place NFA will have painful memories of their last competitive action.

Two weeks ago the Rhyl-based side lost 5-3 at home to Connah’s Quay Nomads, and had two players hospitalised through injury.

They will hope for no such dramas on Sunday when they host next-to-bottom Caernarfon Town.

NFA won 7-1 at The Oval earlier this season and will aim to record another win to keep what has been a promising debut campaign so far flourishing.

There are goalscorers in abundance within Andy Lloyd and Rebekah Hansen’s squad – and that could spell bad news for the Canaries defence.

Very much in a process of rebuild this term with a young squad at their disposal, the Cofis have registered one victory so far this term.

Penrhyn Bay v Llanberis

Penrhyn Bay have shown great improvement this season

This has the makings of a good, close contest.

Llanberis have three wins in the bag, while much-improved Penrhyn have been victorious twice in the league.

The Darans played really well in their last game, a 3-1 cup defeat to a strong Denbigh, and the confidence they can take from that performance should stand them in good stead for Sunday.

Bay are packed with young talent, though, and are more than capable of getting the win.

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