Flashback – 20 years ago: Roberts hat-trick as City recover to win from two-down

Paul Roberts hit three at Y Weirglodd

Rhayader Town 2 (Neil Cooper pen, Lee Farrell)
Bangor City 4 (Paul Roberts 3, Marc Lloyd Williams)
League of Wales – March 14, 2001

Bangor’s greatest twin strikers ever? They must be right up there among the best.

Twenty years ago today, Marc Lloyd Williams and Paul Roberts shared the goals in a 4-2 victory for a City side which had trailed 2-0 at half time.

Substitute Roberts was the star of the show with a hat-trick, while Lloyd Williams continued his remarkable trademark consistency in front of goal.

Home side Rhayader made a perfect start in the sixth minute as Emrys Williams tripped Craig Hughes in the box to concede a penalty which Neil Cooper converted. Neil Cooper is brother of blues defender Steve, now manager of Swansea City.

City nearly struck back when some neat approach work involving Lloyd Williams and Steve Cooper set up John Paul Roberts but his shot went narrowly wide.

Overall though, Rhayader were in charge and it was no surprise when they doubled their advantage on the half hour thanks to a super strike by Lee Farrell from 25 yards into the top right corner. Keeper Carl Mounty reached it but to no avail.

City had a couple of long range free kicks from Clayton Blackmore and then Lloyd Williams but neither really threatened and it was Rhayader who could have increased the lead as half time approached when Steve Cooper cleared off the line.

Half-time: Rhayader 2 Bangor 0

The 11 which took the field for the second period saw Richard Owen, Scott Williams and Paul Roberts replace Steve Cooper, Paul Sellers and Craig Roberts. The effect was startling.

With Richard Owen at left-back and John Paul Roberts on the right City now had the more experienced pair of Aled Rowlands and Scott Williams in midfield with Rhodri Giggs, whilst Jiws now had Paul Roberts for company. The whole team played with greater purpose and verve.

Giggs hit the bar with a 25 yard chip before Paul Roberts converted a close range chance created by John Paul Roberts and then – inevitably -Lloyd Williams.

Within minutes the same combination again ended with Paul Roberts levelling the scores from close in.

Rhayader had looked punch drunk but they found their feet and Mounty was called into the action briefly, although Blackmore and the improving Mark Thomas held firm.

Then on 72 minutes Bangor went in front for the first time as Lloyd Williams set off on a left wing foray courtesy of a telling pass from Aled Rowlands.

The Llanberis marksman surged in on goal but, with everyone expecting a finish, he calmly picked out Paul Roberts who drove the ball in for his hat-trick.

Blackmore then sent a booming ball into the left channel. Lloyd Williams seized on the opening, ran goalwards but opted to thrash the ball past the exposed Mike Barton for a deserved goal and City’s fourth.

What a comeback, tremendous spirit.

Full-time: Rhayader 2 Bangor 4

Bangor City: Carl Mounty, Steve Cooper (Scott Williams 46), Aled Rowlands, Emrys Williams, Mark Thomas, Clayton Blackmore, Marc Lloyd Williams, Rhodri Giggs, Craig Roberts (Paul Roberts 46), Paul Sellers (Richard Owen 46), John Paul Roberts.

Rhayader Town: Mike Barton, Craig Williams, Matthew Cross, Ray John, Gareth Wharton, Glen Willis, Lee Matthews, Lee Farrell, Neil Cooper, Craig Hughes, Russell Wigley. Subs: Chris Morgan, John Morris, Rob Kozak.

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