Why Connah’s Quay Nomads’ victory over The New Saints is arguably the biggest result of the season…

On Tuesday, Connah’s Quay Nomads played The New Saints at the Deeside Stadium. Currently sitting in 3rd place, many were expecting them to lose, and for the gap between 3rd and 4th to remain at 5 points ahead of this weekend’s crunch match between the Nomads and Bangor City. History also told us that The New Saints should be considered firm favourites, with TNS winning 4 of their past 5 matches against Connah’s Quay. As the first half drew to a close, it was as to be expected, with TNS holding a slender 1–0 lead heading into the break. Connah’s Quay was putting in a strong, combative, performance, but wasn’t able to find the back of the net.

But there was to be a twist in the plot. The New Saints, who have lost only one match throughout the whole season in Welsh domestic football, lost 2–1, with goals from John Disney and Declan Poole in the 75th and 82nd minute enough to condemn TNS to the loss. The victory enabled Connah’s Quay Nomads to leapfrog Bala Town into 2nd place, putting the Top 3 8 points clear of Bangor City with 4 games remaining. Bangor City, now looks destined to finish 4th, currently sitting 10 points ahead of Carmarthen Town who are in 5th.

While The New Saints can argue that, having already won the league and lifted the title, they no longer need to win league matches, they should perhaps feel concerned that they may have gifted The Nomads a psychological boost ahead of the JD Welsh Cup Semi-Final fixture between the two clubs. Whilst they’re sure to be eagerly anticipating the chance to put things right, they have undoubtedly put more pressure on the upcoming tie, with Connah’s Quay sure to have a renewed confidence that they can beat TNS again.

In truth, whilst a huge result for the league as it reaches its final few games, more or less guaranteeing Connah’s Quay and Bala Town finish in the top 3, with Bangor stuck in 4th and Carmarthen Town in 5th, it could have a bigger impact on the upcoming JD Welsh Cup fixture. One thing is for certain, this result has created shockwaves throughout Welsh domestic football ahead of that tie, which is eagerly anticipated.

 

IMAGE

The way the result leaves the Welsh Premier League table, with 4 matches left of the 2016/17.
Photo credit: BBC Sport
Photo available from: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/welsh-premier-league/table

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