Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Bangor City Reserves 1-2 Y Felinheli

A match against Bangor Reserves gives our village footballers the opportunity to play in a proper stadium with seats and a tunnel and everything. And don't they enjoy it.

This was the Quarter Finals of one of the 632 Cup Competitions run by the Gwynedd FA every season. We have more Cup matches than League. A big crowd of 74 , including a travelling support of 23 watched the Caernarfon League side dump the young hopefuls of the big City out of the Cup.

This really was a young Bangor side, drawn from the Academy. And they were pretty impressive. They tried to play football in the face of some pretty uncompromising football from Felin, and it took Felin's best performance of the season to keep them out. I was very impressed with the attitude of their manager. As the tackles flew in, he kept his head and simply told his young players to keep the ball on the floor. Bangor's academy has an excellent reputation, and I could see why on this performance.

We have our own reasons to be proud in Felin. In 1992, we were just 90 minutes away from the Cymru Alliance and when I first moved to the village 3 years ago we were playing in the Welsh Alliance. But a new policy of not paying our players has seen us relegated twice to our current level in the Caernarfon League.

But this policy has its benefits. Our team last night featured nine lads from the village and we are giving lads the chance to play for their home team. That's got to be a good thing. We formed a Youth Section in 2005 and last night's team contained 5 players from our Youth setup.

It will have been a good experience for the Bangor City lads who are being developed to play in the tough and uncompromising environment of the Welsh Premier. Felin gave no quarter and in some challenges it was apparent who was the student and who was the hod-carrier. I winced more than once.

Playing for Bangor was Caio Iwan, the son of singer and politician Dafydd Iwan. Iwan looks like a natural footballer with a decent future and has recently been playing with the Wales Under 18s team.

So it's the semis for us on Saturday, and I'll be there instead of travelling to Burnley with Cardiff. I don't know where and against who. I don't even know what Cup it is, but its our last chance of silverware this season and I'm hoping for a Cup Double from my two teams.

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