Super sub Welsh scores extra time winner for The Old Gold

Steffan Williams was denied by Lee Idzi early in the cup clash

Steffan Williams was denied by Lee Idzi early in the cup clash


Nathaniel MG Cup Round Two

Haverfordwest Haverfordwest County 0 - Carmarthen Town 1 
(after extra time)

A dramatic late strike from Carmarthen Town substitute Liam Welsh sent his Welsh Premier League outfit into round three of the Nathaniel MG Cup as they overcame rivals Haverfordwest County at the Conygar Bridge Meadow Stadium on Tuesday night.

Both sides struggled to hit top gear in a tie that was uninspired for long periods, and after the game finished goalless in 90 minutes, Welsh - a first half replacement for the injured Kyle Williams - volleyed home with just three minutes of extra time left to seal the win for Mark Aizlewood's men.

Creating chances

It was the Welsh Division One team who did all the pressing in the early stages, and striker Dan Williams fired over from a tight angle after clever reverse pass from namesake Steffan.

Kristian Speake then dragged a left foot shot inches wide of the far post after good work again by Steffan Williams, and the forward continued to be at the heart of the home side’s attacks, turning Carmarthen defender Dave Vincent on the edge of the area before having his half volley well blocked by former Haverfordwest keeper Lee Idzi.

Speake’s low cross into the six yard box then zipped across the face of goal – but it was The Old Gold who soon went perilously close to the lead from their first real chance.

Blocked on line

The Bluebirds failed to clear Luke Cummings’ long throw into the box, and with keeper Connor McFenton stranded, the ball fell to Carmarthen striker Kosta Georgievsky who had his volleyed effort blocked on the line by Tim Hicks.

The visitors threatened again when Georgievsky narrowly failed to connect with a Kieran Lewis cross – but moments before half time it was The Bluebirds who got back in the ascendancy.

A driving run by Greg Walters led to Dan Williams picking up the ball wide on the left, and he cut inside before curling a superb 25 yard effort that beat Idzy but agonisingly crashed back off the bar.

But the early stages of the second half were stagnated as both sides struggled for fluidity, with Carmarthen’s Liam Griffiths having the only effort of note on target when his 18-yard snap shot was well held by McFenton.

Old Gold press

Away centre back Lee Surman also headed wide from a Lewis corner, and substitute Daniel Sheehan flashed a left foot shot over from the edge of the area.

Midway through the half and the in-form Joe Leahy then had his only real sight of goal for the home side, but failed to get his header on target from Matthew Broome’s deep free kick.

Both sides made changes in search for an extra spark in attack, and Aizlewood’s men were next to go close when Welsh had a close range shot blocked by the legs of McFenton – before at the other end, Haverfordwest substitute Nicky Palmer failed to properly connect with Steffan Williams’ low ball in.

With time running out, Sean Cresser’s Bluebirds were again indebted to a goal line clearance from player-coach Hicks, as he diverted Tyler Brock’s driven shot to safety after McFenton had spilt a high ball in the area.

That proved the last real chance over the 90 minutes – and the deadlock remained unbroken after the first period of extra time.

Half volley winner

But then following after 117 minutes of stalemate - it was The Old Gold who won it when a Lewis free kick from wide on the right fell to Welsh, and he cracked a half volley that found the net via the underside of the bar.

The Bluebirds did fashion a late chance to force penalties when Charlie Davies had his 20-yard free kick pushed wide by Idzi, ensuring the visitors moved into round three.

Haverfordwest County: Connor McFenton, Matthew Broome, Alaric Jones (Nicky Palmer 64), Tim Hicks, Sam Rodon, Ricky Watts (captain), Steffan Williams, Greg Walters, Kristian Speake, Dan Williams (Charlie Davies 69), Joe Leahy (Leon Luby 95). Subs not used: Fraser Finlay, Matty Delaney.

Carmarthen Town: Lee Idzi, Luke Cummings, Jordan Knott, Dave Vincent, Lee Surman, Kieran Lewis, Lewis Harding (Daniel Sheehan H-T), Kyle Williams (Liam Welsh 41), Liam Griffiths (Tyler Brock 76), Liam Thomas, Kosta Georgievsky. Subs not used: Craig Hanford, Kyle Graves.

Referee: Bryn Markham-Jones.

Assistants: Ian Bird and Ryan Kenny.

Fourth official: Tom Bevan.