A quick preview of all six Welsh Premier League fixtures this weekend.
Cefn Druids v Rhyl | Friday – 19:45
Other than the two teams at the top, Cefn Druids are the only other club that have managed to beat Rhyl this season.
Druids enjoyed a 0-3 away win in their last meeting after an early red card for Rhyl’s Aaron Simpson saw the home side go down to men after 30 minutes.
Simpson was lucky not to avoid another sending off at Connah’s Quay last Sunday after an ugly challenge on Tom Field in the first minute of the match.
Despite being up in 4th place, Rhyl have the worst defensive record in the league, but that’s mostly down to the 10 goals they conceded against TNS in August.
The Ancients have slipped down to 11th place after no wins in their last seven league games, since beating Rhyl in their second game of the season, but a win on Friday would lift them into the Top Six over night.
Rhyl 0-3 Cefn Druids (20/08/16)
Aberystwyth v The New Saints | Saturday – 14:30
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 nine 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 equalling that record will be their aim this Saturday as they target a sixth consecutive league title and a triple treble.
The New Saints are on a run off 22 games without defeat against Aberystwyth (since August 2007), so it will be a great achievement if Matthew Bishop’s men could end that run on Saturday.
Aberystwyth are the only club to lose six of their opening nine games, but they do have one thing in common with the Saints as they are the only two teams not to draw a game in the WPL this season.
The New Saints 2-1 Aberystwyth (14/08/16)
Airbus UK v Llandudno | Saturday – 17:15
Live on S4C – Full preview here
Bangor City v Cardiff Met | Sunday – 15:00
It’s been a great week for Cardiff Met who won three games on the bounce to climb up into 5th position after failing to win any of their first six fixtures in the Welsh Premier League.
Christian Edwards’ side have tightened things up at the back and have only conceded once in their last three games.
Bangor City have struggled to find the net recently, scoring only twice in their last four games since beating Aberystwyth 4-0 at the start of September.
Andy Legg’s men are still without a win on the road and will be relieved to return back to Nantporth where they have won four out of five WPL games this season.
gap Connah’s Quay v Carmarthen | Sunday – 15:00
It was a goalless draw between these two sides on the opening weekend of the season but Andy Morrison will expect nothing less than three points on Sunday.
gap Connah’s Quay have gone five points clear in the second spot and are in a good position to claim the automatic Europa League qualifying spot.
With six clean sheets in nine games having only conceded three goals in the WPL this season, the Nomads boast the best defensive record in the league despite missing key defenders George Horan, Ian Kearney and Michael Pearson through injury.
Things haven’t gone so well for Carmarthen since the teams drew a stalemate in August as the Old Gold have only won one of their last six games.
Carmarthen have failed to score in their last three meetings with gap Connah’s Quay.
It will be the 40th meeting between the two sides in the WPL – Carmarthen won 15 (38%), gap Connah’s Quay won 10 (25%), drawn 14 (35%).
Carmarthen 0-0 gap Connah’s Quay (13/08/16)
Bala Town v Newtown | Sunday – 15:00
Both clubs have underachieved this season and are down at the wrong end of the table after nine WPL games.
Newtown sit rock bottom after no wins in their last seven games in the WPL, since beating Carmarthen 4-2 back in August, their only win in the league this season.
It hasn’t gone much better for Bala Town who have only won two league games, against the two newly-promoted sides (Met 0-1 Bala, Bala 2-0 Cefn).
The last three meetings between the two sides have been draws, while Bala haven’t lost any of their last five games against the Robins.
Newtown 0-0 Bala Town (13/08/16)
Highlights of all Welsh Premier League matches are on Sgorio every Monday at 6:30 on S4C
On this day in 1994, Mike Smith started his second spell in charge of the Welsh national side.