Llandudno 1 (Marc Williams 54)
Bangor City 0
Welsh Premier League – January 1, 2017
Report: Mike Smith, Bangor City based Citizens Choice website
What was an impressive Bangor City side on paper lost out on grass – or an artificial 3G surface to be exact – as Llandudno claimed all three points five years ago yesterday at Maesdu Park.
Despite a promising first half display which saw them dominate and create enough openings to have been home and hosed at the interval, City went off the boil after the break and Tudno scored the only goal of the match.
As Bangor had to rule out Henry Jones through illness. Laurence Wilson came into midfield whilst a new-look strike partnership started upfront in the form of Michael Higdon and Jamie Reed.
Higdon was a well-travelled former Scottish Premier League Golden Boot and Player of the Season winner with Motherwell, and also represented Crewe Alexandra, Falkirk, St Mirren, NEC Nijmegen of Holland, Sheffield United, Oldham Athletic and Tranmere Rovers before joining Bangor.
With Damien Allen pulling the strings City assumed control although both Marc Williams and Leo Riley went close for Tudno in the opening quarter.
Bangor got into their stride and first Wilson fired on target before Brayden Shaw forced a save from Dave Roberts. Midway through the half a second Bangor corner of the afternoon saw Danny Taylor scramble Anthony Miley’s header off the line.
Next Shaw slid the ball through to Reed but he fired wide. On the half-hour a melee in the home penalty area saw Reed, Allen and Shaw all foiled as Mike Williams marshalled his defence to good effect.
In the space of five minutes, the visitors then went close three times in quick succession. First Reed hit the post from the edge of the box, then Dave Roberts saved from Gary Roberts and the Tudno glovesman thwarted Wilson.
The home side seemed brighter and more positive after the restart despite City winning an early corner.
On 54 minutes Llandudno’s Lewis Buckley crossed from the left and Marc Williams capitalised on Riley’s back-heel to fire home from six yards.
Just after the hour mark, City’s Sam Hart made way for Dan Nardiello as Wilson slipped into the left-back berth.
In the 71st minute, Shaun Cavanagh replaced Higdon but it was Llandudno, through Danny Hughes and goalscorer Williams, who went close to scoring.
The hosts won their second corner and Marc Williams forced a decent save from Connor Roberts.
Then with 15 minutes left, Gary Roberts beat James Joyce on the right but Nardiello headed wide at the near post. Reed saw his shot saved before Shaw let fly but Williams headed out for a Bangor corner.
Into the final 10 minutes and Llandudno grimly clung on to their slender lead. Right-back Gary Roberts got his customary booking for a lunge on Marc Williams before on 84 minutes Sion Edwards replaced Wilson on the left.
Three minutes of added time changed nothing and the home side ran out winners as the final whistle blew.
Harsh on City given their first half dominance but after the break they looked flat, one-paced and disjointed.
Llandudno could also reflect on that piece of invention from Riley which set up Williams and settled the contest.
Llandudno: Dave Roberts, James Joyce, Danny Taylor, Leo Riley (Sean McCaffrey), Mike Williams, Tom Williams, Tom Dix, Danny Hughes (Gareth Evans 73), Lewis Buckley, Marc Williams, John Owen.
Bangor City: Connor Roberts, Laurence Wilson (Sion Edwards 84), Sam Hart (Daniel Nardiello 62), Leon Clowes, Anthony Miley, Gary Roberts, Jamie Reed, Damien Allen, Michael Higdon (Shaun Cavanagh 71), Daniel Gosset, Brayden Shaw.