WPL 2017/18 PREVIEW: Aberystwyth Town
LET THE NEV-OLUTION BEGIN!
After managing to clinch survival ahead of Rhyl at the end of the 2016/17 season, many suggested that it was going to be a vital summer for Aberystwyth Town, who are more used to challenging for the European places, rather than battling relegation. However, their pre-season preparations were hampered when Tony Pennock left his role as manager after less than one month to join EFL side Hull City as first team coach. Pennock joined the club at the start of April as assistant to Matthew Bishop, before being promoted to First Team Manager on the 21st May 2017, and his departure left the club trying to find their second manager of the summer, eventually deciding on former Bangor City manager Neville Powell.
Neville Powell, commonly known as Nev, joined the club on the 12th July and has been busy preparing his team ahead of the season. However, with just one month to get the team ready for the big kick off, it’s very much all hands on deck.
So far, Aberystwyth have failed to strengthen in many key areas, and with 4 players departing the club, have only managed to sign 6 players ahead of the new season, with the situation looking increasingly difficult for them as they try to prepare ahead of the first match vs Barry Town United on the 13th of August. However, they do have 3 pre-season matches still to play, starting with tonight’s match against Ynysygerwyn (28th July), before taking on Briton Ferry Athletic just a day later. They then take on Hull City Under 23’s on the 6th August, just a week before the WPL kick off. It is looking like a race against time for Nev Powell to get his team in shape, but the experienced manager won’t let that deter him, having overcome much bigger obstacles in the past, including helping part-time Bangor City win the title ahead of much fancied The New Saints in the 2010/11 season and helping Bangor City stay in the league against the threat of relegation in the 2014/15 season.
In truth, the appointment of Nev Powell is the best part of an otherwise unspectacular summer for Aberystwyth. Nev has been there at the top, and battled away at the bottom, experiencing almost everything the Welsh Premier League has to offer, and with him at the helm, fans can expect Aberystwyth Town to be difficult to beat this season, however, there is a worry that with little signings this summer, they could be dragged into a relegation battle again this season.
Scott Coughlan-Cardiff City
Jonny Spittle-Airbus UK
James Etherington-Wrexham (Loan)
Declan Carroll-Carmarthen Town
Declan Walker-Free Agent
Elliot Scotcher-Barry Town Utd
Dylan Rees-Cardiff Met
Daniel Alfei-Yeovil Town
‘New manager Nev Powell will be vital for the Seasiders this season’
Photo Credit: Cambrian News
Photo available from: http://www.cambrian-news.co.uk/images/news/2017/DFMKhL8XUAE_cZG.jpg