The New Saints FC
JD Welsh Cup
|06.03.18 | 7:45pm|
Connah’s Quay Nomads defeated The New Saints in the JD Welsh Cup for the first time in 10 years on Tuesday evening.
A second minute goal from Aeron Edwards sent the Saints ahead, but goals from Michael Bakare and Callum Morris sent Nomads through to the last four.
The Nomads came into the game straight after a home phase two clash against The New Saints, in which a Jon Routledge goal gave TNS a narrow victory.
After captain Paul Harrison had been sent off in that fixture, TNS drafted in Andy Wycherley to start in the net.
The Nomads meanwhile made three changes, with Jonny Spittle, Callum Morris and Jake Phillips starting in place of Mike Pearson, Kai Edwards and Declan Poole. Both sides already knew their semi final fate, as Monday’s draw determined the winner of the tie would go on to face Bangor City at a neutral venue on April 7/8.
The game began and got off to a nightmare start for The Nomads, when from a free kick, Aeron Edwards slotted under Danby at close range to send TNS 1-0 up.
However, The Nomads would go on to dominate the proceedings despite having gone a goal down. TNS’ lead was short-lived as from a 25 yard free kick, Michael Bakare shot low and scored into the bottom right corner.
Bakare looked consistently dangerous throughout the game, turning in the TNS area to move away from a defender in the 10th minute before shooting just wide.
TNS remained well in the contest and won a corner thanks to pressure from Ryan Brobbel in the 16th minute, which Steve Saunders headed over for a Nomads’ goal kick.
TNS once again threatened in the 22nd minute, when Chris Marriott glanced a cross across The Nomads’ goal mouth, but no green and white shirt could convert the chance.
In the 28th minute Bakare dribbled well into the TNS area, passing to Wilde who was just three yards from goal where he was found offside.
Just three minutes later, from a Nomads corner, Michael Wilde sent a header which looked destined for the bottom left corner of the TNS goal, but it was cleared from the line at the last second.
Despite The Nomads looking the stronger side in the first half, TNS were left rueing two late chances to go ahead before the break.
In the 44th minute, Danby made a great diving save to his right to deny a close range flick on from a TNS free kick.
Deep in injury time, Aeron Edwards sent a free header wide of the Nomads’ goal from seven yards, ensuring the score at half time was Nomads 1-1 The New Saints.
Whilst the first half got off to a poor start for Nomads, they found luck early on in the second, as in the 49th minute Nomads were awarded a penalty, their first of the 17/18 campaign, for a foul on Andy Owens.
Callum Morris stepped up and scored into the centre of the net, putting Nomads into the driving seat for the quarter final.
TNS looked to reply with an equaliser, with Greg Draper, who came on for an injured Dean Ebbe in the first half, heading wide from a corner kick.
With an hour played, Nomads looked full of life as they actively looked to extend their lead. There was drama in the 67th minute, when from a Michael Bakare corner, Andy Owens rattled the crossbar from seven yards out on the volley.
Andy Morrison’s side kept a hold of proceedings and went close once again in the 74th minute, when Michael Wilde headed a Callum Morris cross just wide from close range.
Nomads’ first substitution saw Andy Owens be replaced by Declan Poole, who injected his pace into the game well.
On the 78th minute there were nervous scenes as TNS hit the side netting from a 25 yard free kick, prompting some of the Deeside faithful to think it had gone in.
As the game entered its final 10 minutes Nomads remained commandant, bringing on former Welsh Cup winner Kai Edwards in place of Jake Phillips to help shore up the defence.
TNS sent waves of attacks into the Nomads area and as they looked to force the game into added extra time, but they couldn’t break a valiant Connah’s Quay set up down.
Following four minutes of additional time in which Nomads were forced to defend deep, referee Lee Evans confirmed full time and Nomads’ place in the JD Welsh Cup semi final for a third consecutive season.
The JD Welsh Cup semi final between Nomads and Bangor City will be played on the 7/8 April at a neutral venue to be announced in due course.
Nomads will now return to JD Welsh Premier League action, welcoming Cefn Druids to Deeside for a 2:30pm kick off on Saturday 10 March.
The New Saints FC's Scorers