BARRY TOWN UNITED 4
BARRY Town United reached the 50-point mark for the Macwhirter Welsh Soccer League season on Saturday, with this comfortable win in rainy Cwmaman keeping them top of the Third Division.
In a match played amidst spells of torrential rain, Barry swept into a tenth minute lead as midfielder Troy Greening was played through effectively and blasted home.
It could have been two as quickly as the 19th minute, when full-back Lee Baldock's flighted cross came back off the Cwmaman crossbar.
Instead, Barry had to wait until the 26th minute for the second, with striker Jordan Cotterill latching onto the ball and defying the heavy wind to slot home with impressive composure and skill.
On 31 minutes, Cwmaman came closest to pulling a goal back, hitting the post with an inquisitive curler.
Then, six minutes later, the home side found themselves clean through on goal, only for the dependable Lewis Cosslett to calmly take the ball off the foot of a Cwmaman forward.
In the 43rd minute, Cotterill showed exceptional pace, considering the conditions, to break forward down the right and set up Ryan Jenkins, who shot just over the crossbar. Jenkins then tried his luck from long range, again missing out by a narrow margin, but impressing spectators nonetheless.
In the final action of the half, Cotterill forced a strong stoppage time save, with the players soon fleeing to the refuge of the changing rooms as the skies relentlessly emptied.
However, the worst of the weather played out during the interval, allowing the match to be completed in spite of the challenging surface.
Starting the second period with gusto, Greening gracefully rode tackles and squared the ball to Michael Hartley whose low, 47th minute drive was too much for the goalkeeper to handle.
Greening himself then almost made it four, spurning a golden opportunity in the 52nd minute before Cotterill's own effort flew inches wide moments later; an attempt that the travelling Town fans thought had gone into the net.
Playing some slick football on a sodden surface, Barry carved out another decent chance as the sun began to emerge. This time, Jenkins' sublime dummy on the hour freed up Greening, yet the lively former Newport County man frustratingly again missed the target.
Forcing an attack at the other end, Cwmaman saw an attempt cleared off the line by Baldock.
However, this was as good as it would get for the hosts and Cotterill soon added Barry's fourth with an impressive strike in the 72nd minute, cutting inside and firing home.
Brothers Nickie and Scott Jones joined the fray towards the latter stages, with fellow substitute Dale Howarth hitting the stanchion with a little over ten minutes to play.
As it was, the scoreline remained 4-0, completing a month of clean sheets for goalkeeper Dan Bradley and his Town defence.
This Saturday Barry entertain former Welsh Premier League side Cardiff Grange Quins at Jenner Park (kick-off 2pm). Admission is £4 (adults), £3 (OAPs/students) and £2 (unaccompanied children) on the turnstiles, with accompanied children free.
Barry: Dan Bradley, Geraint Frowen, Bobby Briers, Lewis Cosslett, Lee Baldock, Ryan Dorrian, James Saddler, Troy Greening, Michael Hartley, Jordan Cotterill and Ryan Jenkins. Subs used: Nickie Jones, Scott Jones and Dale Howarth. Subs not used: Paul Morgan and Lee Jarman.
*Barry Town United boss Gavin Chesterfield has been named the Welsh League's Manager of the Month for January 2014.
In this first calendar month of the new year, Chesterfield's side won all three of their matches, earning nine league points in the process and scoring 17 times, without conceding.
During this time, the Town also climbed back to the top of their division, having recovered from a narrow loss at Llanelli over the Christmas period.
Barry boss Chesterfield, who led his side to the Welsh Cup semi-finals last season, had previously won the award in August and September 2013.