THREE new signings are set to line-up for Colwyn Bay when they take on Nigel Clough’s Blue Square Conference Premier giants Burton Albion in today’s FA Trophy round one tie at Llanelian Road (3pm).
Former West Bromwich Albion and Altrincham midfielder Mike Garrity, ex-New Saints defender Chris Taylor and one-time Rhyl striker Lee Spike all come into the reckoning for Bay’s biggest game in years.
Manager Gary Finley was forced to act quickly in the transfer market with three key players ruled out by suspension, another cup-tied and fitness doubts over three others.
The mercurial John Lawless, skipper James Olsen and player/coach Mark Quayle are all banned, defender Steve Pope is cup-tied and Paul Williams and Robbie Williams are on the injury list. Top scorer Neil Black has had a cast fitted to protect his broken hand and it will be up to the referee’s discretion whether he will play.
“It’s a massive game and it’s a blow to have so many players out, but the ones we’ve brought in have a lot of experience and won’t let us down,” said Finley.
“After going out of the FA Cup in midweek, Burton will be doubly determined to do well in the Trophy, but all the pressure will be on them and as long as we play as well as we can, we’ll give them a good test.”
Burton, who went out of the FA Cup on Tuesday night with an unlucky 1-0 defeat at Barnet, are expecting to bring between 200 and 300 supporters with them to North Wales.
They are currently fifth in the Blue Square Premier with just three defeats in their 21 games and only two other sides have a better defensive record.
Managed by former Liverpool and England striker Nigel Clough, Burton won 3-1 on their last visit to Colwyn Bay in the Unibond Premier Division in 2002 and the two clubs have had vastly contrasting fortunes since then, with Albion famously taking Manchester United to a replay in the FA Cup last year.
Burton, who take a share of the gate receipts this afternoon, have agreed for Colwyn Bay to charge their normal admission prices (£6 for adults, £4 concessions and £1 for children under-14 who can get in free if accompanied by an adult).