— The New Saints FC (@tnsfc) June 23, 2018
The New Saints of Oswestry Town slipped to a 2-1 defeat in their second preseason friendly against Bala Town at Maes Tegid.
Ryan Brobbel gave the Saints the lead after 15 minutes, but the Lakesiders battled back into the game.
Chris Venables equalised for the home side shortly after, before Kieran Smith scored the decisive goal midway through the second-half.
As is often the case, TNS started the match in the ascendancy. With 10 minutes on the clock, last season’s JD Welsh Premier League golden boot winner, Greg Draper fired over the crossbar from the edge of the box. It didn’t take long for the first goal to come though.
Good play on the edge of the box from Draper almost presented Danny Redmond with an opening. The New Zealand international’s pass was blocked but it rebounded to Ryan Brobbel. He beat the defender with a ball roll before firing into the roof of the net, to give the Saints a 1-0 lead.
But just 10 minutes later Bala were level. Chris Venables found space in between the TNS defence, before a brilliant effort from outside the box went past Paul Harrison and into the back of the net.
Like the Cefn Druids match on Wednesday, the first-half was another quiet affair. Danny Redmond, making his first appearance in the green and white shirt, struck a free-kick well, but his shot was just a few yards wide from a TNS perspective.
Danny Redmond continued to look lively as the second-half got underway. 2 minutes after the restart he tested Ashley Morris with a driven shot from outside of the box.
TNS continued to push on for the second goal. Former Hamilton man Redmond was involved again. This time, he was found on the left-hand side of the box by Ryan Brobbel, but his shot was saved once more by Morris. This time though, it rebounded back towards goal, but fortunately for Bala, the ball was cleared off the line.
It wasn’t long before Bala had the lead. A defensive lapse from Blaine Hudson saw his clearance hit Paul Harrison, giving Kieron Smith an easy chance to head the ball home and put the Lakesiders 2-1 in front with 57 minutes on the clock.
New Bala signing Andy Mangan turned a cross onto the post on 68 minutes, and that’s the closest either side came to scoring again.
Scott Ruscoe had made 10 changes to his starting 11 for the match, and with KF Shkëndija waiting on the horizon, the result won’t have come as too much of a disappointment. The chance to give much needed game time to those players who didn’t feature on Wednesday was his main objective.
|June 23, 2018||3:00 pm||Friendly||2018 – 2019|
|The New Saints FC||1|