By Ashley Cox

THE JD Cymru Premier’s Young Player of the Year Momodou Touray has made a sensational return to Barry Town United, with the fan favourite signing a second season-long loan deal.

The Wales U21 international was a pivotal player in the Jenner Park side’s successful 2018-19 campaign, making more than 30 appearances, scoring 14 times and helping Barry reach the Europa League preliminary round, before returning to parent club Newport County.

Making his full debut for the Exiles in May’s 1-1 draw with Carlisle United at Brunton Park, Gambia-born Touray then joined Torquay United on a one-month loan deal, featuring for Gary Johnson’s Gulls’ in a 2-1 National League win at Dover Athletic.

In his previous stint at Jenner Park, talisman Touray scored a wealth of memorable goals, including winners against Cefn Druids, Bala Town, Caernarfon Town and Llandudno, as well as a brace in November’s thrilling, top-of-the-table 2-2 draw at Connah’s Quay Nomads.

Meanwhile, Touray’s go-ahead goal at Maes Tegid in April enabled Barry to clinch European football for the first time in 16 years, with Town ultimately running out emphatic 5-2 victors.

Announcing the deal on Monday night, Barry manager Gavin 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."

Chesterfield’s coup was not the club’s only business before Monday’s European transfer deadline, with 18-year old midfielder Sion Spence also arriving on loan from Cardiff City.

A Wales U19 international and former Academy Player of the Season with the Bluebirds, Barry-based Spence scored an impressive hat-trick against Bristol City U18s earlier in 2019.

With Evan Press, Drew Fahiya and Callum Sainty all signing new contracts, Barry’s first-team squad for the forthcoming months has been bolstered to 22 players, though injuries look set to keep midfielders Troy Greening and Robbie Patten out for the immediate future, at least.

Patten became the team’s latest casualty in Friday’s 1-0 victory at Carmarthen Town; a result that saw Barry climb to the top of the JD Cymru Premier, as previous leaders Bala were themselves beaten 1-0 by last year’s runners-up, Andy Morrison’s Connah’s Quay.

Barry went west having won all seven of their previous seven meetings with the Old Gold, though only once in this time had the teams been separated by more than a single goal.

Friday’s clash at Richmond Park was a similarly close affair, with Carmarthen goalkeeper Lee Idzi denying Sainty from close range in what was the stand-out chance of an even first-half.

After Declan Carroll’s shot from outside the box whizzed past George Radcliffe’s near post, Carmarthen began to press in the second period, only to be crucially dispossessed in the centre with 21 minutes to play.

With substitute Eli Phipps and warhorse Patten in the midst of the action, the ball found its way to Clayton Green, who carried it on, before firing a fine effort into the Carmarthen net.

In-form Green had been a frustrated motorway bystander earlier in the day, before snaring an impromptu lift to the Richmond Park ground from the travelling Barry supporters’ coach.

Seeking to snag an equaliser, Carmarthen threatened through Liam Thomas, whose fancy footwork under pressure enabled the Wales C forward to make his own attempt on goal.

However, Barry goalkeeper Radcliffe produced an impressive one-handed save to maintain his team’s advantage, en route to securing a first-ever clean sheet in the JD Cymru Premier.

With ten points from four games facilitating their rise to top spot, Barry now welcome Caernarfon Town to Jenner Park on Saturday, with kick-off at 2.30pm.

The Canaries were winners of last Friday’s televised game, twice coming from behind to edge an exciting encounter with Airbus in Broughton, prevailing by three goals to two.

Finally, the club has confirmed the departure of midfielder Tom Fry, via mutual consent.

“Tom is a talented player who hasn’t played as much as he would have wanted,”commented Chesterfield.

“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."