Porthmadog slumped to their tenth consecutive defeat of the season on a bright (for the neutral!) afternoon. To make matters worse from a Port point of view, the visitors sealed the victory deep, deep, deep into injury time, writes Treflyn Jones.
Porthmadog 2 Llandudno 3, JD Cymru North
Things started oh so brightly for the hosts, and then………
Well, the first half was simply crammed with positives for the home side. They attacked with enthusiasm and were duly rewarded in the eighth minute, when, after good work by Cai Jones and Rhys Alun, the utterly excellent Danny Brookwell found himself free in the box and expertly tapped home past Mike Jones in the Llandudno goal.
Some five minutes later, Port went further ahead, when, for the second time in the match, a Brookwell corner kick landed on top of the the crossbar.
This time, however, Gethin Thomas was determined enough to head it home via the underside of the bar. 2-0 up and (whisper it!) looking rather comfortable. Indeed, throughout the half, the Port backline was rarely troubled apart from some dangerous runs from their lively winger Ethan Roberts and a few good runs from former Port winger Alex Boss on the other flank.
Port went into their dressing room at the break 2-0 up and deservedly so.
After 65 minutes, there was a big let-off for Port as Llan’s Ethan Roberts taunted the Port defence, wrong-footed his marker and then blazed over with only Farebrother to beat.
From then on, it was mainly Llandudno who were doing the attacking and were first to everything due to their vastly superior physical stamina which became more and more apparent as the half wore on.
However, Brookwell twice burst into the Llandudno box. On the first occasion, he was seemingly brought down, but the ref, to Port’s disbelief was carded for ‘simulation’ and, on the second occasion, he shot way over the bar. On 76minutes, however, Brookwell was (puzzlingly!!!!) substituted. Why, why, why would you take off your very best player with the game still in the balance?
It was in the 84th minute that Llandudno scored their first goal. Port failed to clear an almighty scramble just inside the box, and somehow, Rowan Davies managed to squeeze his shot into the corner of the net beyond Farebrother’s full-length dive.
Josh Banks was sent off shortly afterwards after what was deemed to be a second yellow card offence. Conveniently, from a Llandudno point of view, the referee had completely ignored a bad foul on a Port player seconds before this incident. There is, I`’m afraid, a very clear message here, namely that if you harass a referee non-stop for 90 minutes especially when it comes to a fairly clear foul, at this level, he will give you what you want. We have seen it ‘ad nauseam’ in this league. I am very proud to say that Port players don’t do this! But why does every single team east of Bangor (Llandudno included) behave in this abhorrent manner?
In the 94th minute, Fabrizio Murtas unleashed a shot from the edge of the area which hit the back of the net with Farebrother possibly unsighted and the referee had found even more minutes from somewhwere.
Finally, after 98 minutes, Llandudno broke Port hearts into a million pieces.
A strong run down the right flank was followed by a low, dangerous cross which was bravely parried by Farebrother as he dived amidst a sea of legs. However, the tiring Port defenders failed to clear the danger and Karl Clair’s shot crept over the line via the underside of the bar. To Llandudno the spoils. Enough said!
Next Saturday, Port travel to Caersws for another league encounter with a 2pm kick-off.