Saints Crowned Champions

The New Saints drew with Airbus UK to clinch a record breaking eighth Corbett Sports Welsh Premier League title.

A first half goal from Mike Wilde was cancelled out by a late Tom Field penalty at Park Hall Stadium.

TNS started well and Chris Jones forced James Coates into a good save with only five minutes gone. The powerful shot was heading for the top corner but was expertly kept out by the Airbus goalkeeper.

Steve Jones and Glenn Rule both had shots from range that didn’t test Paul Harrison and within minutes, Sam Finley nearly opened the scoring. The energetic midfielder curled his effort over the bar after a neat one two with Jamie Mullan.

With half an hour gone, Rule went the closest to breaking the deadlock. The midfielder side footed a goal bound effort that struck the post and bounced out.

Minutes later and the deadlock was broken. Matty Williams was alert enough to race onto a poor back pass to Coates and after his shot was blocked, Wilde pounced and coolly tucked in from an acute angle, despite James Owen’s desperate efforts to clear the ball off the line.

Moments later Finley headed over from close range after latching onto an Aeron Edwards cross in what was the final move of the first half.   

The Saints controlled the majority of possession in the second half and nearly doubled their advantage midway through. Chris Seargeant’s curling effort looked destined for the top corner but clipped the cross bar with Coates helpless.  

With only 15 minutes to play, Wilde thought he had completed his brace but was denied by an incredible stop from Coates. The Airbus ‘keeper dived to his right and kept out Wilde’s ferocious shot.

However, with only five minutes left to play, The Wingmakers won a dubious penalty. Substitute Tom Field stepped up and sent Harrison the wrong way to equalise.

The action continued into the last minute and Chris Budrys missed a glorious chance to win the game after his header flew inches wide of the post.

The New Saints line up consisted of Paul Harrison (C), Aeron Edwards (Simon Spender 59), Kai Edwards, Phil Baker, Chris Marriott, Sam Finley, Chris Seargeant, Matty Williams, Jamie Mullan, Chris Jones and Mike Wilde (Greg Draper 73).

The unused substitutes for The Saints were Ryan Fraughan, Lee Fowler, Connell Rawlinson, Aaron Simms and Luke Douglas.

The Airbus team were made up of James Coates, Ian Kearney, Mike Pearson, Andy Jones, Steve Jones (Steve Abbott 80), Glenn Rule (Tom Field 57), Chris Budrys, Michael Roddy (Jason Oswell 80), Sam Hart, James Owen and Ashley Williams.

The unused substitutes for the visitors were Aaron Hassall, Zyiac Edwards and Myles Hart.