WPL Preview: Two points separate eight teams

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A quick look at the full set of fixtures over the weekend with plenty of movement likely to take place in the league table as only two points separate the bottom eight sides.

Friday

Bala Town v Bangor City | Friday – 19:45
It’s an exciting time at Bala Town FC as they prepare for their first ever game on the new Maes Tegid synthetic 4G surface.

Following eight fixtures away from home, Colin Caton’s crew are looking forward to returning to Maes Tegid whilst hoping that home comforts will benefit them in their efforts to climb up the table.

Before last week’s double defeat to The New Saints, Bala had only lost once this season, and that was against this week’s opponents’ Bangor City at Nantporth last month.

The Citizens also struggled last week, picking up one point from two games after a 1-1 draw at Carmarthen was followed by a disappointing 1-0 derby defeat at Rhyl on Tuesday night.

Andy Legg enjoyed a promising start to his tenure as Bangor manager winning four out of his first five fixtures, all home games at the Bangor University Stadium.

But things haven’t gone so well on the road as the Citizens have only picked up one point out of a possible nine from their three away games this season.

Last meeting:
Bangor City 2-0 Bala Town (27/08/16)

Saturday

Newtown v Airbus UK | Saturday – 14:30
Both clubs have enjoyed the high life of the Top Six over the past three seasons, but are now two of the four clubs that are joint on seven points at the bottom of the league.

Despite winning only once this season, Robins striker Jason Oswell is the WPL’s joint top scorer with TNS’ Chris Seargeant after netting seven goals each.

But defensive errors have cost Newtown recently who have struggled to deal with direct balls over the top, conceding simple goals in recent games.

Airbus picked up four points from two tough games against Cefn Druids last week, but despite enjoying their best week this season the Broughton side still couldn’t avoid slipping down to the bottom of the table.

The teams haven’t met since last season’s play-off semi final where Matty McGinn’s two penalties were enough to secure the win for the Wingmakers.

Last meeting:
Newtown 1-2 Airbus UK (07/05/16) Play-off Semi Final 2015/16

Cardiff Met v Aberystwyth | Saturday – 17:15
Live on S4C – Full preview here

Sunday

gap Connah’s Quay v Rhyl | Dydd Sul – 15:00
The two sides start the weekend in 2nd and 3rd place with 11 goals apiece in the WPL this season.

But gap Connah’s Quay have the best defensive record in the WPL this season as Andy Morrison’s disciplined defence have only conceded three goals in eight games so far.

The Nomads remain unbeaten this season, but Morrison will be frustrated that his side couldn’t secure all three points against Llandudno on Tuesday night, especially as Marc Williams’ equaliser looked suspiciously offside.

Niall McGuinness enjoyed his first derby victory as Rhyl manager as his side came out 1-0 winners over Bangor City in front of a crowd of 1,070 at the Corbett Sports Stadium on Tuesday night.

The Lilywhites continued their unbeaten run to six games in all competitions, and although some say that they are over-achieving this season, a positive result at Deeside on Sunday could prove that Rhyl are real contenders for a Top Six place come January.

Last meeting:
Rhyl 1-2 gap Connah’s Quay (19/12/15)

Llandudno v Cefn Druids | Dydd Sul – 15:00
Two recent Huws Gray Alliance Champions will go head to head for the first time in 30 months when they meet at Maesdu Park on Sunday.

With only one win from eight so far this season the Druids are one of the of the four clubs that are joint on seven points at the bottom of the league.

Llandudno are the club’s lowest scorers this season with only four goals in eight games (0.5 goals a game).

But their defensive record is amongst the best having only conceded eight goals in eight games with five of those scored by TNS in their second game of the season.

It’s been a similar story for the Ancients who have been relatively strong at the back but wasteful in front of goal with Huw Griffiths clearly disappointed after their 2-2 draw with Airbus on Tuesday night stating that his side had ‘hammered’ Airbus all game but had failed to turn chances into goals.

Last meeting:
Llandudno 0-0 Cefn Druids (15/03/14) Huws Gray Alliance

The New Saints v Carmarthen | Dydd Sul – 15:00
There’s no sign that the Saints strong start to the season is about to end as they start the weekend eight points clear at the top of the WPL having won all eight games keeping their 100% record intact.

This is their best start to a season since 2003/04 when they won their opening 10 matches, and it doesn’t look like they are going to take their foot off the pedal anytime soon as they target a sixth consecutive league title and a triple treble.

Carmarthen travel to Oswestry on the back of a 0-5 thumping at home to Aberystwyth on Tuesday night.

Mark Aizlewood start the weekend in 5th place, but only two points separate them and 12th place, so the league table could be looking a lot different by Sunday evening.

Last meeting:
The New Saints 4-1 Carmarthen (17/11/15) League Cup Semi Final

Highlights of all Welsh Premier League matches are on Sgorio every Monday at 6:30 on S4C