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Sunday, 04 January 2015 10:02

STUDENTS HELD IN TOP-OF-THE-TABLE ENCOUNTER

SATURDAY 3rd JANUARY 2015: Cyncoed Campus, rain clearing.
CARDIFF MET UNIVERSITY 1 GOYTRE UNITED 1 (Nathaniel Cars Welsh League Div One)
The first Saturday of the year starts with a prolonged downpour which is more than a match for the grass pitches of south Wales. By mid-morning, despite no consolidated online information via the Welsh League, Twitter is awash with postponements and my plans clearly need to be revised - 3G being the only safe course of action. And while it's only a couple of weeks since I was at Cyncoed, their 1st v 2nd fixture today is attractive in its own right.

By 1.30, as I enter the ground, it's looking like a fair afternoon for watching football: drier, brighter and relatively mild (I was regretting my layers of clothing on the walk up to Cyncoed). Another plus, I've even got a programme this time. With everything else in Cardiff and the valleys off, you'd expect the football folk to have flocked here for a top of the table clash, but they haven't - where are they ?

Visitors Goytre United, who have impressed this season, appear depleted, at least in numbers. They have only one recognised substitute, with manager Andy Hill naming himself at 14 as well. But the same may be true of the students - I notice Jordan Lam is absent today, for one. Opening exchanges are even: although play is mostly in midfield and the visitors' half, the students are finding it hard to play their intricate passing game against a team capable to tackling and intercepting. On more than a few occasions, the Met resort to uncharacteristic long balls and hurried punts. They have a few chances, with several crosses into the box eluding the strikers, and a couple of long-range efforts close. By half time, Goytre have frustrated the home side, but not really troubled Will Fuller's goal at all.

The second half brings an early goal, a header from the visitors. This prompts the students to increase the tempo of their game, and that in turn brings more excitement for the neutral. They start to look dangerous down the left, where they have the pace of striker Adam Roscow and versatile number 3 Karl McCarthy getting forward effectively when needed.

There's no immediate reward for the more positive play, and some promising moves break down when wrong options are chosen. But eventually the pressure tells and from a corner, the ball is knocked into the six yard box and Roscow fires it over the line. He comes close after getting behind the right back, but the ball squirms along the line and is cleared, and Luke Martin's goal escapes several other times in the closing stages as Goytre hold on for a point. The result keeps the Met top in an increasingly congested title race, but it also ends my long run of one-sided wins. Rarely has a draw been so welcome.

Published in Football
Sunday, 21 December 2014 08:38

Students Top of the Form

SATURDAY 20th DECEMBER: Cyncoed Campus, dry with a chilly wind.
CARDIFF MET. UNIVERSITY 5 AFAN LIDO 0 (Nathaniel Cars Welsh League Division One)
The shortest, darkest Saturday of the year, and the travel and weather complications of the season all mean this is no day for attempting ambitious journeys. As luck would have it, there are two attractive fixtures in Cardiff and, baulking at the prospect of bus journeys through the city centre and out west, I choose the closer option - a first visit of the season to Cardiff Metropolitan University, who sit proudly top of the Welsh League and are entertaining Afan Lido, relegated from the Welsh Premier six months ago. Although Lido are struggling, I'm hoping to break my sequence of one-sided games....

Published in Football
Sunday, 17 August 2014 07:45

KINGFISHERS HELD IN THEIR NEW NEST

SATURDAY 16th AUGUST: Penypound Stadium, dry, cloud, sunny spells and a cool breeze.
MONMOUTH TOWN 1 CARDIFF MET. UNIVERSITY 1 (Nathaniel Cars Welsh League Div 1)

Domestic football returns, on a pleasant mid-August day - somewhat drier and warmer than some of the opening days I can remember. Welsh League Division 1 champions Monmouth have been scheduled to face the Division 2 champions, the students of Cardiff Met, an interesting fixture in itself, but made even more so by Monmouth's controversial move to Penypound Stadium, Abergavenny over the summer.

While the relocation of any football club is bound to be controversial, and we all have misgivings about the 'franchising effect', I do find it hard to oppose this one. The Kingfishers were unable to upgrade their facilities in their home town and any thoughts of continuing this club's rise would have to be abandoned if they'd stayed there. Welsh League clubs have come in for some heavy criticism for lack of ambition recently... so here's one showing real ambition and taking a gamble: sixteen miles down the road, Penypound, one of our iconic old grounds, had lacked a senior tenant for well over a decade and its future was uncertain.

Published in Football
Sunday, 20 April 2014 16:55

FOUR INTO THREE....

SATURDAY 19TH APRIL: Old Road, sunny.
BRITON FERRY LLANSAWEL 1 CARDIFF METROPOLITAN UNIVERSITY 3 (Nathaniel Cars Welsh League Div 2)
Easter Saturday, and not a day for attempting long trips by rail or road, so a game of significance in south Wales is needed: and Division 2 of the Welsh League obliges, with a head-to-head encounter between two of the four sides chasing three promotion places. Four into three definitely won't go - something has to give.

Published in Football
Saturday, 15 February 2014 20:05

SURPRISES

SATURDAY 15TH FEBRUARY: Ynys Park - sunshine & showers
TON & GELLI BC 3 CARDIFF MET 2 (FAW Trophy Quarter-final)
After a week of unprecedented storms - including one overnight on Friday - it's clear that for yet another weekend we're going to lose most of the fixture list. In fact, I'm not really expecting anything to be on except a few fixtures on 3G surfaces. With the wind and squally rain continuing through the morning, this seems like a week when the best option might be staying in. The updates online during the morning more or less confirm that only a handful of games are going to survive - but to my great surprise, Ton & Gelli's FAW Trophy match is confirmed as on. I'd sort of written off the trophy quarter finals as either likely to be off, or too difficult to get to, so this unexpected development means an easy decision: I'm off to the Rhondda.

Published in Football
Saturday, 18 January 2014 19:55

A REVERSAL OF FORTUNE

SATURDAY 18TH JANUARY: Cyncoed Campus - wet
CARDIFF MET UNI 8 TREOWEN STARS 0 (FAW Trophy Round 5)
Three weeks into the new year and it hasn't stopped raining. January is often a bad month for postponements but the ground is rarely this saturated, and every downpour just makes most pitches unplayable. So another week of rain, and more rain in the Saturday forecast, leads inevitably to another Saturday morning monitoring websites and twitter feeds as matches fall victim. After a weekend 'off' last week, I need to find a game that's on.

Published in Football
Sunday, 05 January 2014 09:34

ISSUE 170

WF 170 cover

This issue - published December 2013 - contains main club features on BARMOUTH & DYFFRYN UNITED and CARDIFF MET UNIVERSITY.

There is also a look back exactlt 50 years to Borough United's European Cup Winners' Cup campaign in 1963.

Plus the usual columns, photos, comment and statistics from all levels of football in Wales.

Available to order for £3.50 including postage - contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for further details   

Published in Publication Dates
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