A week on from The New Saints’ latest European campaign, Sgorio reporter Nicky John has been catching up with Aeron Edwards.
I think there were periods of the game where we outplayed Slovan Bratislava, but we didn’t manage to capitalise on the chances we created. It’s hard to look at the negatives when there are so many positives to take from both legs. I think we can be proud of the way we competed against a highly experienced European team.
How do you think the team’s performance this year compared to some of your previous European experiences?
I think this is probably the closest that we’ve come to progressing to the next round since I’ve been at The New Saints – (Aeron made his first European appearance for TNS as a sub against Anderlecht in 2010). However, Bratislava’s fitness, quality and experience came through during the final 20 minutes of the game.
And how did Slovan Bratislava compare with some of the other European clubs you’ve come up against?
They were a very solid and organised team with some good players, but having said that I don’t think they were of the same standard as the likes of Anderlecht and Legia Warsaw.
Which player most impressed you?
Their number 20, Seydouba Soumah was very impressive during both legs.
You can now turn your attention back to domestic football – what are you most looking forward to ahead of the new season?
I’m looking forward to getting back to playing competitive games on a weekly basis and hopefully challenging for the league again!
You start the season at home against Bangor – you scored one of the 9 goals against them the last time you met…
It will be a totally different game this around. They are always big games whether at Nantporth or Park Hall…
Who do you predict will be one of the teams to watch this forthcoming season?
I think Rhyl will be strong again – they have a lot of young players and if they manage to add a few experienced players to their squad they could do very well again.
Connah’s Quay have also made several signings and could potentially be dark horses.
Which player do you expect to impress’?
I’d have to say Christian Doidge at Carmarthen.
Which teams do you predict will make the top 6?!
I think it will be TNS, Airbus, Rhyl, Bangor, Aberystwyth and Connah’s Quay.
How will you mostly be spending your time between now and the beginning of the new season on August 22nd?!
I’ve just had a few days away after being knocked out of the Champions League last week, so now I’m ready to get back and prepare as normal ready for the new season.
Finally, who is your own football hero?
Has to be Zinedine Zidane.
On this day in 2006, former Welsh international Clayton Blackmore was appointed manager of Bangor City.