ABERYSTWYTH Town will put the anticipation of their forthcoming Welsh Cup Final on 6 May firmly on hold as they look to secure their Welsh Premier League status against Carmarthen at Park Avenue on Friday evening (8pm).
The Cambrian News reported “Craig Hobson’s early strike earned the Seasiders a crucial 1-0 win at relegated Prestatyn last Friday, but a 3-2 win for second-from-bottom Carmarthen over Llandudno has kept them within five points of Aber, with two games to go.
The Seasiders will guarantee league survival if they avoid losing to Carmarthen, but a home defeat will take Aber’s destiny into their final match, at home to mid Wales rivals Newtown.
“We knew what we had to do when we came here,” said Aber’s assistant manager Wayne Jones after their battling win at Prestatyn last week.
“It’s really pleasing to get a clean sheet. It wasn’t pretty, but it was enough to win the match and that’s exactly what we had set out to do.”
Aberystwyth have lost just three times at home in all competitions since November, and have scored 23 goals in their last eight games at Park Avenue.
They will be keen to put in another two strong home performances that could propel them as high as eighth place in the Welsh Premier at the end of th campaign.
Carmathen, however, registered back-to-back wins over Aber over the festive period, and two last-gasp goals snatched the Old Gold a dramatic 3-3 draw at Richmond Park in February.
The last fixture between the two sides saw Aberystwyth run out 3-1 victors in their Welsh Cup quarter final clash at Richmond Park just five weeks ago.
Under the leadership of Neil Smothers they have had an upturn in fortunes, and successive wins over Prestatyn, Newtown and Llandudno have kept their own hopes of avoiding the drop alive.
Jones added: “Neil’s done a great job with Carmarthen, to be fair, and credit to them. But it’s still in our own hands, that hasn’t changed.
“We’ve got another two tough games to go, including Carmarthen and Newtown, so we’re not thinking about the Cup at the moment.
“We need to get an extra point, that’s all we need over the next two games, and we will be mathematically safe from relegation then.”
Much will also depend on whether two clubs are eligible for promotion into the Welsh Premier this year, with Cymru Alliance champions Caernarfon Town all set to step up.
Current Welsh League division one leaders Llanelli Town, however, have been refused the FAW domestic licence by the First Instance Body, along with Bangor City and Connah’s Quay.
These clubs have 10 days to lodge their appeals” here.