2 - 2
Connah's Quay Nomads vs Barry Town United
JD Cymru Premier
Saturday 10th November 2018 | 2:30pm
Deeside Stadium, Connah's Quay | Attendance: 274
Connah’s Quay Nomads played out a classic on Saturday afternoon when they drew 2-2 against Barry Town United in the JD Welsh Premier League.
Michael Bakare sent the Nomads in front, before a quick fire Momodou Touray brace gave Barry the lead, with a Rob Hughes equaliser sealing a draw in a game full of chances for both sides.
The game was dubbed one of the biggest of the season, after a shock 1-0 victory for Caernarfon over TNS gave first placed Nomads and second placed Barry, who were joint on points, the chance to go five clear at the top of the table.
Nomads came into the fixture following a 6-0 victory over Llanelli Town at Deeside, whilst Barry Town had beaten Llandudno 2-1 at Jenner Park to maintain their 100% record at home.
Andy Morrison started a largely unchanged line up, with Declan Poole and Ryan Wignall, who was returning from suspension, replacing Andy Owens and Michael Parker.
Barry meanwhile announced a strong starting eleven including the likes of Chris Hugh, Newport County’s Momodou Touray, and striker Kayne McLaggon.
The game began and after a fairly even opening ten minutes, the Nomads began to pressure the visitors’ end. In the 13th minute, a Wignall cross was headed just over the goal by Bakare who rose highest in the area.
Four minutes later Bakare was again in the thick of the action, dribbling into the Barry area and turning into the six yard box only for his shot to be blocked.
But in the 18th minute his efforts paid off when he received the ball from around 30 yards out to stride forward and send a low effort into the bottom right corner from 22 yards.
Nomads were looking strong, and with a 1-0 lead under their belts they proceeded to dominate the majority of the first 45 minutes.
They played most of their football in the Barry half, and the likes of Wignall and Poole were making good runs and dangerous crosses into the area.
Their next best chance came on 34 minutes, when after a scramble in the six yard area ensued from a corner, Wignall had a shot blocked at point blanc range.
But on 36 minutes the game would begin to turn on its head in a wild 60 seconds of play. Bakare went on a surging run into the Barry area and sent a shot pinging off the crossbar, which Barry countered with a run towards the Nomads’ end.
John Danby came off his line to challenge, and although he blocked an initial effort, Momodou Touray found the ball from around 25 yards out, and with the Nomads’ goal open, he simply slotted the ball in from distance.
And just over two minutes later, he struck again to send a low effort in as Barry, rejuvenated by their equaliser, attacked the Nomads end with vigour to take a shock lead.
With the score now Nomads 1-2 Barry, a stunned Connah’s Quay looked to even the odds before half time, going close with a header from Michael Wilde that went just over the Barry goal.
Despite their efforts and enjoying the better of the half, the Nomads were trailing at the break thanks to Touray’s goal rush.
Andy Morrison made a change at half time, introducing Michael Parker into the Nomads’ midfield with Jay Owen subbed off.
And Connah’s Quay started the second half well, with a Wignall pass into the Barry box in the 50th minute again triggering a scramble where Nomads couldn’t get a clear shot away on goal.
Three minutes later, Wignall sent a high cross into the area which Wilde sent goalwards, but it again wasn’t enough to give Nomads their much needed equaliser.
On 55 minutes, Touray went close to sealing a hat trick when he hit Nomads on the break, running into the area only for Holmes and Disney to make a vital tackle and clearance respectively to stop him getting a shot away.
With over an hour played Nomads’ search for an equaliser was ongoing, as they continued to be frustrated at the Barry goal mouth. In the 62nd minute, they won a free kick just five yards from the visitors’ area, but Bakare’s kick blasted the ball wide.
The chances kept coming for both sides, with Barry’s Southam-Hales floating a 25 yard shot just over the Nomads crossbar before Morris saw yet another shot blocked at the Barry end.
With just 20 minutes to go, Nomads made more changes from the bench, with Jack Kenny replacing Michael Wilde and Rob Hughes coming on in place of Ryan Wignall.
In the 72nd minute, Kayne McLaggon had a chance to score Barry’s third when he received a cross from six yards out with only John Danby to beat, but his strike went over the Nomads’ goal.
With just 14 minutes to play, Connah’s Quay finally found their equaliser when Rob Hughes found the ball from around 25 yards out, and sent a powerful low strike into the bottom right corner to bring the score level.
Hughes’ goal triggered a phenomenally frantic finish at Deeside, as a minute later Kayne McLaggon looked ready to convert a cross on an open Nomads’ goal line, only for the ball to bobble between him and go out for a corner.
Barry then won two consecutive corners before Nomads claimed a corner of their own, as the game morphed into an end to end rush.
In the 84th minute, John Disney’s defensive class was clear for all to see as he blocked what looked like a certain Barry goal at close range.
Four minutes later Nomads saw their own game-winning chance denied, when goalkeeper Mike Lewis dived to push away a well placed header from Jack Kenny for a corner, which was then cleared off the goal line as the game reached fever pitch.
John Disney continued to pull off a fantastic performance, calmly passing away a Barry shot which bounded on the Nomads goal line, before making yet another goal line clearance with a header as Barry looked for a sensational winner.
Inside the final 60 seconds of the game’s three additional minutes, John Danby pushed away a shot from a Barry corner to again deny them.
Despite both side’s best efforts to secure all three points, they settled for a 2-2 draw at full time.
The game was a great advert for the JD Welsh Premier League in which both sides could have scored around half a dozen goals if not for some brave defending at both ends.
The result keeps Nomads at the top of the league as they turn their attentions to the Irn Bru Cup quarter final away to Queens Park FC at Hampden Park next Friday 16 November.
The game kicks off at 7:45pm and will covered live on BBC Alba in addition to The Nomads’ own Twitter feed.
Match report by Will Catterall
Michael Bakare opens the scoring at Deeside Stadium with a strike in the 18th minute © NCM Media
Rob Hughes connects with a stunning volley to equalise in the 76th minute © NCM Media
Ryan Wignall sees his close range effort blocked © NCM Media
Callum Morris goes painfully close for The Nomads in the second half © NCM Media
Jack Kenny rises highest to head for goal in the last minutes of play © NCM Media
1. John Danby
15. Danny Holmes
6. Danny Harrison
2. John Disney
3. Laurence Wilson
12. Declan Poole
16. Jay Owen
8. Callum Morris
22. Michael Bakare
7. Ryan Wignall
9. Michael Wilde
26. Eric Merner
4. Jonny Spittle
11. Nathan Woolfe
14. Jack Kenny
17. Michael Parker
21. Rob Hughes
25. Dominic McHugh
The Nomads' Goalscorers
Barry Town's Scorers
Modou Touray (2)