A BUMPER crowd of 1,285 walked through the turnstile at the Carling Oval on Friday evening to see if Caernarfon could put themselves a step closer to reaching their European dream.

Cardiff Met were their opponents in this European Play off semi final and, having defeated the Cofis at the same venue just a few weeks ago, the students would have been confident of a favourable result.

However, with the Cofis at full strength this time around, they seemed the stronger side throughout and whilst the visitors did threaten to score, especially during the first half, Caernarfon managed a rare clean sheet that ultimately gave them the platform to clinch a late, but famous victory on the night.

The hosts started brightly and Darren Thomas twice threatened to open the scoring in the opening five minutes but was thwarted by timely blocks.

Visiting keeper Alex Lang pulled off a smart save in the 13th minute to tip the ball over his bar after Gruff John had arrived at the far post to meet a Sion Bradley corner.

Much of the action in the opening half took place in the middle third of the field with both teams seeming nervy, which was no surprise considering the high stakes.

The second period saw the hosts take control of possession, and the match, as the vociferous supporters roared them on.

There were close calls from Darren Thomas, Louis Lloyd and Zack Clarke, whilst Bradley was unlucky not to open the scoring when his low free kick curled around the defensive wall but struck the upright.

Town’s top scorer this season, was introduced in the 83rd minute and made an instant impact as he gave Caernarfon a much needed focal point up front.

With just three minutes of normal time remaining, a low cross from Dion Donohue from the left flank caused panic in the visitors’ box, and Marc Williams latched onto it with a bullet strike that Lang could only palm into his own net.

The lead was a deserved one for the hosts as they had been the team pushing forward throughout the second half and, with the match entering injury time, Bradley put Adam Davies through with a perfectly weighted delivery and the big striker expertly slid the ball under the advancing Lang to give Caernarfon an unassailable lead.

The Cofis host Penybont on Saturday at the Carling Oval for a winner takes all finale to the JD Cymru Premier League. The team that comes out on top will represent Wales in Europen competition this summer.

Team; Josh Tibbetts, Morgan Owen, Iwan Cartwright, Gruff John, Dion Donohue, Dion Gossett, Marc Williams, Sion Bradley, Louis Lloyd, Darren Thomas, Zack Clarke.