WPL weekend preview

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It’s a straight shoot-out for the Top Six on Saturday as Cefn Druids challenge Llandudno for the final place in the top half.

Saturday, 13 January

Aberystwyth v Connah’s Quay | Saturday – 17:15
Connah’s Quay will do everything in their power to catch up with leaders TNS who have opened up quite a gap at the top of the table.
But the battle for 2nd place will be interesting this season as there are four strong teams contesting for that automatic Europa spot this year.

The Nomads are unbeaten in four games (won 4, drawn 1), conceding only once in the process.

Aberystwyth, on the other hand, have gone four games without a win (lost 3, drawn 1).

Connah’s Quay have won their last three matches against Aberystwyth, scoring 12 goals (5-1, 1-3, 4-0).

Andy Morrison’s men have the strongest defensive record in the league – conceded 16 in 21 games.

It’s nearly four years since Aber last beat Connah’s Quay at Park Avenue in the WPL – 2-1 in March 2014.

Last meeting:
Connah’s Quay 5-1 Aberystwyth (08/12/17)

Carmarthen v Cardiff Met | Saturday – 17:15
Cardiff Met have won their last two matches against Carmarthen, scoring nine goals (5-0, 0-4).

Only Connah’s Quay (16) have conceded less than Cardiff Met (17) this season.

Carmarthen looked down and out less than a month ago, but Aizlewood’s men have closed the gap on 10th placed Aberystwyth to seven points.

Old Gold keeper Lee Idzi has kept three clean sheets in five games, and also scored a freak goal from his own box against Aberystwyth on New Year’s Day.

Last meeting:
Cardiff Met 5-0 Carmarthen (04/11/17)

Cefn Druids v Llandudno | Saturday – 17: 15 (S4C)
The Rock hosts the biggest game of the weekend as Cefn Druids and Llandudno battle it out to secure a place in the Top Six, with the action live on Sgorio.

A point would be enough for the Druids to claim a Top Six spot for the first time in their history, but Llandudno have been strong in recent weeks and Iwan Williams’ men will be confident of doing the job on Saturday.

Llandudno have only lost one in seven, but three of those games ended goalless.

The Seasiders had gone 360 minutes without conceding a goal before Bala Town’s late equaliser on Saturday.

At this stage last season, Cefn Druids were in 10th position with 19pts – they have made good progress this year as they are 6th with 30pts.

Last meeting:
Llandudno 1-2 Cefn Druids (30/10/17)

Barry Town v Bala Town | Saturday – 17:15
Barry are not mathematically out of the race for the Top Six, although they would need to beat Bala by at least seven goals for any hope of climbing above Cefn Druids and Llandudno.

Les Davies grabbed a brace in their only previous meeting as Bala ran out 2-0 winners at Maes Tegid.

It will be Colin Caton’s 600th game in charge for the Lakesiders who aim to go level on points with Bangor before the split.

Barry Town have lost 3-0 in their last two games (vs Cardiff Met & Connah’s Quay).

Last meeting:
Bala Town 2-0 Barry Town (21/10/17)

Newtown v Prestatyn | Saturday – 17:15
Newtown’s recent matches have been highly entertaining with at least four goals scored in each of their last five outings, which includes impressive wins at home against Cardiff Met (3-2), and away at TNS (2-4).

The Robins were trailing 2-0 at the interval in both those games.

The last two meetings between these two sides have been drawn.

Prestatyn have lost their last seven games in the WPL and are in the relegation zone.

Neil Gibson’s side have not won a WPL match at Latham Park since October 2012 (1-4).

Last meeting:
Prestatyn 0-0 Newtown (23/10/17)

The New Saints v Bangor City | Saturday – 17:15
Bangor have won their last two meetings with TNS and Scott Ruscoe’s men are desperate for pay-back.

The Citizens caused an opening weekend upset when they beat TNS 5-2 with Brayden Shaw and Gary Taylor-Fletcher both scoring twice for Bangor.

TNS have bounced back and have gone nine points clear at the top of the table and now set their sights on a 7th consecutive league title.

After a disappointing defeat at the hands of Newtown on New Years Day, the Saints reacted instantly with an away win at Bala Town (0-3), followed by another away win at Prestatyn (1-4).

Bangor have only lost one of their last 10 WPL games (0-1 vs Llandudno).

The league’s current top scorer, Greg Draper (15 goals) will be looking to add to his tally as his next goal will be his 100th in the WPL.

Last meeting:
Bangor 5-2 The New Saints (11/08/17)

Highlights of all WPL matches will be on Sgorio every Monday at 5:30 on S4C.