Jenner Park hosts Ryan Giggs press conference

On Thursday morning, Barry Town United were delighted to host an FAW press conference at Jenner Park as Wales manager Ryan Giggs addressed the media after announcing his squad for the upcoming Euro 2020 qualifiers.

The national side are set to face Slovakia and Croatia later this month, and preparation for those games dominated the discussion, but Giggs also took questions about Gareth Bale, Aaron Ramsey and more.

Also in attendance were pupils from local school Ysgol Gymraeg Gwaun y Nant, who got the chance to pick the brain of Giggs, finding out who his hardest opponent was (Javier Zanetti) to his biggest ever win (9-0 vs Ipswich).

It’s been an exciting few weeks for the school, who hosted the Wales Women’s manager Jayne Ludlow last week as she announced her squad for the Euro 2021 qualifiers. Giggs was even asked who would win between the men and the women, but could only say that it would be “a tough game”.

Earlier on Thursday, it was confirmed that Barry Town United goalkeeper George Ratcliffe, on loan from Cardiff City, has been included in the Wales Under-21 squad for their game against Moldova on October 11. Whilst this means that he will miss our JD Cymru Premier home game against Penybont, we are naturally delighted for George as it is reward for his excellent performances in recent weeks.

The New Saints vs Barry Town United | JD Cymru Premier Preview

The top two in the JD Cymru Premier League go head-to-head today as Barry Town United visit The New Saints (kick-off 2:30pm).

TNS held the top spot for 24 hours last weekend as they came from 2-0 down to beat Carmarthen Town 6-2 on the Saturday, but Barry reclaimed pole position on the Sunday as Chris Hugh’s superb solo goal defeated Cefn Druids 1-0. The victory maintained our unbeaten start to the league campaign, something we’ll be hoping to continue this afternoon in addition to our 100% away record, with three wins from three on the road so far.

Of course the challenge ahead of us is a tough one, with Scott Ruscoe’s side the perennial champions of the Welsh top flight, having won the title in each of the last eight seasons. They have lost just once in the Cymru Premier so far in 2019/20 – a 3-1 defeat to Bala Town on matchday two. Since then, TNS have scored 21 goals in five league matches, with two apiece from Aeron Edwards, Greg Draper and Kurtis Byrne seeing them to victory against Carmarthen last weekend. Their most recent fixture though, a Nathaniel MG Cup clash against Bangor City on Tuesday, ended in disappointment, as they lost on penalties to the Cymru North side after a 1-1 draw in normal time.

Our last visit to Park Hall had a dramatic finish, as Jonathan Hood’s 96th minute bullet free-kick back in February secured a 2-2 draw against a TNS side who had won six league games in a row without conceding a goal beforehand. Kayne McLaggon had earlier pulled a goal back from the penalty spot after we went two goals behind. The Oswestry-based side won the other three league meetings between the two clubs last season, as well as beating us in the Welsh Cup semi-finals.

Ahead of this afternoon’s game, Gavin Chesterfield’s attacking options have been boosted by the expected returns of both Jack Compton and Keyon Reffell from injury. Troy Greening and Robbie Patten remain sidelined, while Callum Sainty was stretchered off against Cefn Druids last week and is also unavailable. Jordan Cotterill is suspended.

Tickets at Park Hall for this game will cost £8 for adults, £4 for concessions and £1 for juniors.

Barry Town Vets Over 55s Go Top After Convincing Win

Over 55s manager Steve Hill presents referee Nicholas Pratt with the match ball ahead of Barry Town United vs Cefn Druids in the JD Cymru Premier.

Current league and cup holders Barry Town Vets Over 55s moved to the top of the table after a comfortable 4–0 win against Merthyr in the Wales Veterans Football League. 

Barry welcomed back Ballysingh and Staddon after lengthy absences and they slotted seamlessly into defence alongside teammates Jones and Murray, but it was the ‘intensity’ of their midfield – Brown, Welsh, Huish and Dyke that was causing real problems for the visitors. They could have been 5-0 up by half time, although only Bobbett’s free-kick and a goal by Welsh separated the teams going into the break. 

Dupuy and Marshall entered the fray and although the visitors started the more lively at the start of the second half, Barry keeper Jones was rarely troubled. Strikers Sanderson and Bobbett had several ‘Monty Python’ moments before man-of-the-match Dyke settled the nerves with a super strike from the edge of the box. Bobbett put the match beyond the visitors with a crisp finish after a dazzling run from his own half.

Debilitated stand-in manager Steve Hill, summed-up the game succinctly:

“This game should have been put to bed in the first 30 minutes, but although there is a need to be more clinical, the team scored four and played some lovely, flowing football in the process and deserve to be at the top of the league.”

Hill later presented the match ball on behalf of the ‘Vets’, for Barry Town United’s Cymru Premier win over Cefn Druids…as Gavin Chesterfield’s side also moved back to the top of the table.

Barry Town Vets’ Over 55s face Newport in their next match on 6th October. The Over 50s, fresh from a 1-0 victory via a Hodgkinson goal, face Continental from Cardiff, whilst the Over 60s take on Swansea – both on 20th October.

Two-goal hero Mike Bobbett

Barry Town United vs Cefn Druids | JD Cymru Premier Preview

Barry Town United are back at Jenner Park this afternoon, with Cefn Druids the visitors in the final JD Cymru Premier fixture of the weekend (kick-off 2:30pm).

Kayne McLaggon scored his fifth goal of the season last weekend to secure a 1-0 win over Airbus UK, maintaining our 100% away record in the league and taking us top of the table in the process. However, both TNS and Cardiff Met won yesterday afternoon against Carmarthen Town and Bala Town respectively, meaning we will begin today in third place with the chance to go back to the summit with victory.

Cefn Druids meanwhile have won just once in six games so far this campaign – a 3-1 victory over Airbus on matchday two. Last weekend they played out a thrilling 3-3 draw with Carmarthen, with Ramirez Howarth grabbing three sensational goals for Huw Griffiths’s side as they led twice against the Old Gold but couldn’t find a way to come out on top. They have also got credible draws at Newtown and Caernarfon this season, so there’s no doubt today will be a tough test.

Barry won in dramatic fashion when Druids visited Jenner Park last season, as Mo Touray scored in the 92nd minute to secure a 2-1 victory. Gavin Chesterfield’s side had previously trailed before Jordan Cotterill’s equaliser. Cotterill then got a hat-trick in the reverse fixture at The Rock, as Touray netted again along with Kayne McLaggon in a 5-2 triumph.

Captain Cotterill unfortunately remains unavailable for today’s fixture, but the club have confirmed that we will appeal the six-month suspension he has been handed by the FAW. Meanwhile, Troy Greening, Robbie Patten, Keyon Reffell are unavailable because of injury. In more positive news, Jack Compton is back in training.

Speaking ahead of the game this week, Gavin Chesterfield said:

“I’m delighted with the start. If the season ended now, I’d be over the moon, but there is still a long way to go. We’ve got another tough game against Druids to look forward to.

“I’m really happy with the lads and their application, but we are nowhere near hitting our straps, there is so much more to come. We are gradually getting better and gradually getting stronger.”

Tickets at Jenner Park this afternoon will cost £8 for adults, £5 for concessions and £3 for kids.

Airbus UK vs Barry Town United | JD Cymru Premier Preview

Barry Town United face Airbus UK Broughton for the very first time this afternoon in the JD Cymru Premier (2:30pm kick-off).

Our 0-0 draw with Caernarfon Town last weekend, a second clean sheet in a row, maintained our unbeaten start to the league season and kept us at the top of the table. However TNS’s 2-1 win over Newtown on Tuesday and Connah’s Quay Nomads’s 4-1 victory against Aberystwyth last night means we will start today’s game at The Airfield in third place.

Airbus meanwhile are currently in 10th position, having collected their first points of the campaign last weekend in a 2-1 win over Aberystwyth. It had previously been a difficult start to life back in the top-flight for The Wingmakers with four straight defeats.

It follows on from a hugely successful 2018/19 season for Steve O’Shaughnessy’s side, as they won both the Cymru Alliance and the Cymru Alliance League Cup. Their resulting promotion ended a two year stay in the second tier after relegation in 2017, the same year Barry were promoted back to the Welsh Premier League. It was the second time the two clubs had bypassed each other in the league system, following Barry’s relegation and Airbus’s promotion in 2004.

It was sadly confirmed yesterday that Troy Greening will miss the rest of the season with an ACL injury. We wish Troy all the best with his surgery and rehabilitation.

Fellow midfielders Robbie Patten and Jordan Cotterill also remain out through injury and suspension respectively. In more positive news, Callum Sainty is fit to return. George Ratcliffe will also return to the squad following his time with the Wales Under-21 side.

Speaking ahead of today’s game, Gavin Chesterfield said:

“We’re prepared well. Airbus got their first win against Aberystwyth last weekend and they’ve got some very talented, experienced players in the group. I feel as if before the season started they strengthened well.

“Looking at the manager’s comments, their performances have probably been better than their results so I’m under no illusions it’s going to be a real tough game. But it’s a game we look forward to.”

Barry Town Vets Win 3-2 Against Penybont

Barry Town Vets got their season off to a winning start against a very tough Penybont team in the Wales Veterans Football League. 

Although not at their best, goals from Bobbett, Sanderson and Dyke plus strong and committed performances from the likes of Alun Huish, Mark Jones and particularly Cardiff City legend Roger Gibbins secured the three points for Barry Town Vets, now part of Barry Town United FC.

The ‘Vets’ who will compete in the over 50s, 55s and 60s competitions of the Wales Veterans League this season, were recently welcomed to the Barry Town United FC fold by co-chairman Mark Barrett, who enthused:

“We believed that the absence of a veterans section was one of the missing pieces in the development of the Club and inviting in a ready-made, successful group, including so many well known names from the past was the obvious solution and should be mutually beneficial to all concerned.” 

Barry Town Vets spokesman and legend Dickie Batt added:

“This is an exciting move for the ‘Vets’ and having a base in the Town is a real positive for us and should help to strengthen our current pool of players as we look to introduce over 40s and 45s teams for 2020/21.”

Manager Jimmy Blackie added:

“We are looking forward to the new season at Jenner Park with real enthusiasm and hope to maintain our impressive record.”

Barry Town United vs Caernarfon Town | JD Cymru Premier Preview

Barry Town United host Caernarfon Town in the JD Cymru Premier this afternoon (2:30pm kick-off) hoping to making it five games unbeaten.  

We are one of just three teams yet to lose in the league this season, and last weekend’s 1-0 win over Carmarthen sent us to the top of the table. Clayton Green’s 69th minute strike was the difference between the two sides at Richmond Park as Cardiff City loanee George Ratcliffe picked up his first clean sheet in the Barry goal.

Ratcliffe is away with the Welsh Under-21 side this week, meaning there is a return between the sticks for Mike Lewis, who will make his first appearance of the season following time on the sidelines with injury. New signings Sion Spence and Mo Touray could also feature after completing loan moves from Cardiff City and Newport County respectively on deadline day. Unfortunately we are still without Jordan Cotterill due to suspension and Troy Greening through injury. Chris Hugh is back in training.

Today’s opponents Caernarfon currently sit eighth in the JD Cymru Premier, having claimed their first victory of the season last Friday night against Airbus. The Cofis twice trailed against the newly-promoted side but substitute Jamie Breese scored in the 87th minute after being played through by a sublime Gareth Evans pass to win the game 3-2. It followed on from a 1-0 defeat to TNS in their opening fixture and draws with Connah’s Quay Nomads and Cefn Druids.

Sean Eardley’s team have Barry to thank for their fourth place finish last season, as Kayne McLaggon’s penalty in stoppage time against Newtown in the final game meant the Cofis went above the Robins on goal difference. It completed an excellent first season back in the top-flight for Caernarfon, who had endured a nine year exodus before winning the Cymru Alliance in 2018.

In the four meetings between the two teams in 2018/19, Gavin Chesterfield’s side came out on top on three occasions. The 4-0 win at Jenner Park in phase two was our biggest victory of the entire campaign, while Marcus Jones’s 88th minute winner at The Oval was one of the most memorable moments of phase one.

Tickets at Jenner Park this afternoon will cost £8 for adults, £5 for concessions and £3 for kids. It should be a dry afternoon in Barry, with light cloud and a gentle breeze.

Mo Touray Returns To Barry Town United

It’s official! Mo Touray is a Barry Town United player once again, having signed on a season long loan from Newport County.

Mo returns to Jenner Park following a successful loan spell last season, in which he scored 14 goals in all competitions and won a hat-trick of awards at the end of the campaign – Supporters’ Player of the Year, Manager’s Young Player of the Year and the ‘Champagne Moment’ for his goal at Bala Town that put us 3-2 ahead in the game to secure European qualification. In addition, he was named as the Welsh Premier League’s Young Player of the Year and included as a ‘substitute’ in the Team of the Season.

Born in Gambia, Touray has been capped at Under 19 and Under 21 level by Wales, and scored for the latter against Switzerland last October. Prior to his time at Barry, the striker also spent time on loan at Merthyr Town and on trial at Leicester City. He has made one senior appearance for Newport, coming off the bench against Carlisle United in League Two in May 2018. He spent pre-season this summer in the first team set-up at Rodney Parade, before joining National League side Torquay United on a one-month loan at the start of August.

Following the conclusion of that deal, the 20-year-old now links back up with Gavin Chesterfield’s squad, which he was a hugely popular part of last season.

Having completed the signing, Chesterfield commented:

“The opportunity to bring Mo back to the club came around quite late in the window but it was one we could not turn down. It’s no secret that Mo had a good season with us last year and that he was very well liked by all at the club. As such I’m delighted to be working with him again. My thanks to the board for their support and Mike Flynn and Newport County for their continued trust in us.”

Tom Fry Departs

Barry Town United can confirm that midfielder Tom Fry has today left the club by mutual consent. 

Manager Gavin Chesterfield said:

“Tom is a talented player who hasn’t played as much as he would have wanted. Whilst I have a duty as a manager to deliver results I also have a duty to develop players and it’s right that Tom moves on to play more football on a regular basis.”

“He has a good attitude and a great desire to be the best player he can be. I am sure Tom will be a success at his next club and it goes without saying that we wish him the very best as he moves onto his next challenge.” 

The club wishes to place on record their thanks to Tom for his efforts in a Barry Town United shirt. Good luck Tom!

Sion Spence Signs For Barry Town United On Loan

Barry Town United are delighted to announce the signing of 18-year-old Sion Spence on loan from Cardiff City.

The Barry-born midfielder arrives at Jenner Park for his first taste of senior football after scoring 11 goals in 15 appearances last season to help the Bluebirds’ Under-18 side win the PDL2 South title for the first time.

Spence has been with Cardiff City since the age of seven, and made his debut for the club’s Under-23 team at the age of just 16. In 2017/18, his first season as an Under-18 apprentice, the youngster scored 21 times to win the Academy Player of the Year award.

Described as “a clever midfield player” that is “known for his determination and ability to score a variety of goals”, Spence has also been capped eight times by the Wales Under-19 side, netting twice.

Commenting on the signing, Gavin Chesterfield said:

“Sion is someone I’ve worked with at international level and is a footballer that our supporters will enjoy watching. He’s rated highly at Cardiff City and it is hoped that this loan will stimulate his development further. Naturally I’m looking forward to working with Sion again and we thank Cardiff City for their trust.”