They have played for Caernarfon Town and Porthmadog – Part 3

Emrys Williams was a League of Wales giant. All photos: Aled Philp

Although we stated this was a two-part feature, the information has kept on flowing so here is number three in a series of articles on players who have represented both Caernarfon Town and Porthmadog.

And there’s a good chance of a fourth instalment too!

Again huge thanks to Alex Philp for his invaluable assistance.

Emrys Williams

Local lad “Cheran” grew up just a long throw from The Oval and became one of the most feared centre-backs in the League of Wales.
He spent time with Tranmere Rovers as a youth before turning out for Bangor City Reserves upon his release.
Porthmadog manager Meilir Owen then signed him for the 1993/94 League of Wales campaign and over the next two seasons at Y Traeth he made 50 appearances.
He then spent time with Caernarfon Athletic and his fine form prompted John Aspinall to bring him to Caernarfon Town for the 1995/96 season.
Over the next four years, Emrys became a firm favorite with the Canaries fans, helping the club to top six finishes on three occasions including the 1996–97 season when the Canaries challenged Barry Town for the league title before finishing fourth, just missing out on a place in Europe.
Between 1995-99 he made a total of 134 appearances, scoring eight goals.
The 1999/00 season saw Williams move to local rivals Bangor City and during his two years at Farrar Road he won the Welsh Cup in 2000 and represented the club in the 2000/01 UEFA Cup defeat versus Halmstads of Sweden.
In 2001/02, Emrys returned to The Oval under Adie Jones, making a further 24 appearances before rejoining Porthmadog.
Emrys did return to The Oval in the dark days of 2010 with the club in crisis and made six appearances for Geraint Williams’ side and a further six the following season before hanging up his boots.
He later achieved trophy successes as manager Caernarfon Town Reserves and worked with Mark Jat at Llanrug United.
To date, Emrys holds Caernarfon Town’s club record for Welsh Premier/ League of Wales appearances with 158.

Chris Jones

Chris Jones (furthest right) in his Porthmadog days. Picture:

Although he has represented both Caernarfon Town and Porthmadog in the Welsh Premier, Jones is better known for his top-flight achievements with Bangor City.
He joined the Citizens in 2010 and quickly made his mark with vital goals home and away in the defeat of Europa League opponents Honka Espoo.
He went on to grab some crucial net-finders as Bangor won the Welsh Premier League title in 2011.
A former Leeds United apprentice and Wales U-19 and U-20 cap winner, Jones featured in the WPL for Caernarfon in 2006/07 and Llangefni Town in 2007/08 before joining Porthmadog in 2008/09.
After scoring 37 goals in 175 matches for Bangor between 2010-11 and 2015-16, he rejoined Porthmadog in 2016-17.
For the past three seasons, he has been a regular goal-getter for Holyhead Hotspur. who have just been promoted to the Cymru North.

Darren Gowans

Darren Gowans has a remarkable collection of winners’ medals

An Everton prospect as a youngster, Gowans represented Beaumaris Town before joining the Bangor City set up where he played for the youth side and later the Under 21’s.
During the 2005/06 season he made a Welsh Premier appearance for the first team as a second-half substitute in a 5-1 win over Grange Quins, and also came off the bench in Premier Cup and Welsh Cup ties, both against Carmarthen Town, before seeing out the campaign at Glantraeth.
With Glan he won the Cymru Alliance League and League Cup double, then in 2007-08 and 2008-09 he scooped back-to-back Welsh Alliance League title and Cookson Cup triumphs with Bethesda Athletic. In the latter season he notched 17 goals.
Llangefni Town manager Lee Dixon persuaded Gowans to join for the 2009/10 season and he was an integral member of the side that won the Cymru Alliance League title only to be denied promotion due to the domestic licence rule.
Gowans’ next port of call was Porthmadog under the management of Gareth Parry, where he featured in the Huws Gray Alliance side of 2010/11.
The winger then joined Llandudno under the stewardship of Deiniol Graham in October 2011, spending a season at Maesdu Park.
Dixon moved quickly to bring Gowans back to The Oval for the 2012/13 campaign and he instantly fitted in.
He made 35 starts with a further 10 substitute appearances, scoring 12 goals during one of the club’s most memorable seasons as they lifted the Welsh Alliance League title, Cookson Cup and FAW Trophy, where Darren scored a cracker in the 6-0 demolition of Kilvey Fords in the final at Newtown.
Upon leaving Town, Darren had spells at Holyhead Hotspur and Menai Bridge Tigers before joining Glantraeth, where he celebrated another Welsh Alliance and Cookson Cup double in 2016/17.
Gowans later played for Holywell Town and Conwy Borough before featuring in the Menai Bridge Tigers side that won the 2018/19 Gwynedd League title.
A much decorated footballer. Four Welsh Alliance titles, two Cymru Alliance championship medals and a Gwynedd League winner, as well as numerous cups.

John Rowley

John Rowley (yellow)

Former Caernarfon Town player of the year Rowley joined the Canaries from local side Llanberis in 2004.
He played in three Welsh Premier seasons for Town, scoring 15 times in 80 appearances whilst also appearing for Cymru Alliance side Llangefni Town.
Between 2005 and 2008, Rowley was Caernarfon’s top scorer and supporters player of the year during the 2007/08 campaign before joining Porthmadog in May 2008 after the arrival of David Rowe as manager at The Oval.
He spent one season at Y Traeth, scoring 12 goals in 33 appearances across all competitions.
John proved he had not lost his goalscoring touch upon his return to The Oval despite being out for a lengthy period through injury as he went on to score 11 goals in 21 games and was again top scorer in 2009/10 as the team were relegated to the Welsh Alliance during troubled times.
Sadly this proved to be his last full season at the club as he left after playing one game of the 2010/11.
Rowley has the distinction of having worn the yellow jersey in almost every position with distinction and who could forget his double against Bethesda under Geraint Williams and Ernie Talbot as the team played for free and saved the club by completing their fixtures.
John later represented Eryri Harriers and became a talented marathon runner, tackling the Barcelona ESP in 2013 and finishing in 413th place. He returned to The Oval for a CTFC v Welsh Premier legends match and went on to score a hat-trick.

Jason Sadler

Welsh Under-18’s international who progressed through the youth team to become a regular in Caernarfon Town’s senior side.
Jason broke into the first team during the 1997/98 season, making two substitute appearances, however the following year he cemented his place in the side and over the next two campaigns played in 50 games, scoring 8 league goals as the side struggled and were relegated.
The 2000/01 season proved to be hugely successful for Jason as he helped the Canaries to the Cymru Alliance title, League Cup and North Wales Coast Challenge Cup. He also finished as top scorer during the treble-winning season with 22 goals.
A move to Llangefni at the start of 2003/04 season saw Jason continue as a prolific scorer in the Alliance and in 2005 he returned to The Oval, making a further 14 appearances scoring twice.
Spells in the Welsh Premier followed with Porthmadog where he netted 15 league goals in 43 games before he joined Llandudno, scoring a hat trick on his debut versus Port.
Upon leaving Llandudno he assisted local side Caernarfon Wanderers before returning to The Oval during the crisis of 2010, playing eight games and scoring three times before returning to Wanderers. A local lad who scored some memorable goals.

Marcus Orlik

Marcus Orlik

One-time Sheffield Wednesday prospect signed for Caernarfon Town from Colwyn Bay in 2004.
Spent two seasons at The Oval, scoring 12 goals in 46 appearances, before joining Rhyl in summer 2006.
Although making his European debut for the Lilywhites in the second-half of their Europa League tie in Lithuania against Suduva, Orlik made just one full appearance for the club in the 2006-07 Welsh Premier campaign.
He switched to Porthmadog towards the end of the season, featuring in 11 matches and scoring three goals.
Orlik remained a Port player from 2007-08 to 2011-12, serving three seasons in the WPL and the rest in the Cymru Alliance, chalking up a total of 122 appearances and netting 38 times.
A major highlight was his cracking goal in Porthmadog’s 1-0 victory over Llandudno in the 2009/10 NWCFA Challenge Cup Final.
Orlik later played for Llangefni Town, Glantraeth and Llanberis.

Steve Joel

He was born in October 1955 and was 5 feet 7 inches of pure pace. Sometimes he was almost too quick for himself!
Not only did he possess outstanding pace but he also had one of the longest throws you could see in football.
Steve started as a 16 year old in Liverpool’s Lancashire League team but after a season moved to Marine who were then in the Cheshire League.
Again he only stayed for a season before teaming up with John Williams at Porthmadog.
Joel had trials for Wrexham and also played for Bethesda before once again returning to Porthmadog.
He followed Williams to Winsford but when John became manager at Runcorn he soon brought Steve along too at the start of the 1980/81 season.
Success was instant with the NPL title quickly followed by the winning of the Gola League, later known as the Conference.
In September 1984 Steve suffered a very serious leg injury at Leek Town in the FA Cup which kept him out of the game for months and all but finished his career.
After John Aspinall was sacked as Caernarfon Town manager in 1996-97, Joel took over as boss in January, having previously been in charge at Southport.
Although results were poor overall, the Canaries picked up in the last couple of weeks of the season and a draw in the final game would have delivered a place in Europe, but sadly Town lost.
Joel also made one appearance as a player for the Cofis.

Jamie McDaid

Jamie McDaid

Currently with Porthmadog, whom he rejoined in January 2020 after a stint at Llandudno.
Local lad Jamie spent time at Crewe as a schoolboy. He then became a regular at Porthmadog between 2010 and 2012, scoring 10 goals in 50 appearances.
First signed by Steve Smith at Caernarfon Town in the 2011/12 season, he made 11 first team starts, scoring three goals and won the NWCFA Youth Cup with the young Cofis.
It was around this time that he received international recognition when selected for the Welsh Schools side in the Victory Shield and he scored a hat-trick for the Welsh Colleges in the 3-2 Anglo Welsh Shield victory versus England in 2013.
After a season at The Oval he left to join Holyhead Hotspur and later played for Bangor City in the Welsh Premier and Europa League.
Lee Dixon signed Jamie from the Citizens in August 2014 and in his first season back at Caernarfon he finished as top scorer, helping the side clinch runners-up spot in the Huws Grey Alliance.
The following season he made 25 appearances, scoring 4 times as a regular in the side that eventually clinched the Huws Gray Alliance double, but decided on a move to Porthmadog in February 2016, later switching to Holywell Town.

Paul Roberts

The great Paul Roberts

A clever, skillful striker whose unselfish build-up play was the cornerstone of that golden boot season for strike partner Marc Lloyd Williams in 2001/02, when Jiws netted 47 goals for Bangor City and 66 in all competitions.
Paul Roberts was a fantastic marksman in his own right and his goals for Porthmadog earned him a transfer to Wrexham in 1996, where he was capped at under-21 level by Wales, and then moved to Farrar Road in the 1998-99 season.
With Bangor, Paul scored the winning goal in the 2000 Welsh Cup Final defeat of Cwmbran, and in 2002 he netted in the 1-0 win over Sartid at the Racecourse Ground in the UEFA Cup.
After eight seasons with the Citizens, putting away 95 WPL goals, Paul moved to Rhyl but rejoined City in 2006 only to move on again, this time to Porthmadog, where he had three spells in all.
Also played for Welshpool and Newtown before helping Caernarfon Town to the treble of Welsh Alliance title, FAW Trophy and Cookson Cup under Lee Dixon in 2012-13, notching nine goals in 16 starts before injury held him back.
He later played at Penrhyndeudraeth, scoring in their FAW Trophy final defeat against Holywell in 2014-15.
With 147 Welsh Premier goals to his name, Roberts is 11th on the all-time list of league marksmen.

Shaun Cavanagh

Shaun Cavanagh

Aged 22 and still a great prospect, having performed impressively in the top two tiers of Welsh football.
Shaun returned to Porthmadog in January 2020 from Caernarfon Town after leaving the Traeth in the summer of 2019.
Leading scorer at Port in 2018/19 with 12 goals, helping the club finish in 3rd place in the HGA.
Can play up front or in midfield, has a keen eye for goal and plenty of pace to play in wide positions.
His former clubs also include Llandudno and Bangor City.

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