BANGOR City, boosted by their Loosemores Cup win at Connah’s Quay Nomads in midweek, are upbeat about tackling champions The New Saints at Farrar Road tonight.
“We will have to be at our very best to get the result we want, but with the talent in our ranks we are perfectly capable of pulling it off,” said manager Nev Powell.
“There is keen competition for places and at Connah’s Quay we brought in lads who had not played before and they did well in a very pleasing 3-0 win.
“TNS have a tremendous reputation as the reigning champions and are an outstanding side. They are always the team to beat.
“I have not seen them recently but most of their players have been there for a couple of seasons and they have added to their strength by bringing in more quality.”
Midfielder Gareth Parry (groin) is Bangor’s only injury doubt because of a persistent groin strain, but Kieran Killackey (hip) had 70 minutes at Nomads and emerged with no ill effects.
Two extra additions are forward Chris Sergeant, a scorer at Connah’s Quay, and keeper Jack Millward, both secured from Powell’s former club Nomads.
TNS have been handed mixed news on two of their long-term casualties, writes John Bridgwater. Strike duo John Toner and new signing Ronnie Morgan have both missed the start of the campaign.
While Morgan hopes to return to training soon following an abductor muscle problem, the club’s all-time top scorer Toner faces an uncertain few months.
The forward has been suffering from what was thought to be a groin strain, but it could now be a hernia problem which will mean at least another six weeks on the sidelines.
Midfielder Steven Beck is struggling with a hamstring injury picked up last week, but Phil Baker, Tommy Holmes and Chris King now seem to be back to full fitness.
The Saints are relieved to have picked up their first points last weekend in the 6-0 win over Caersws at their new Park Hall ground.
“The most important thing was that we got our season up and running,” said manager Ken McKenna. “Last week has now given us a good platform, we’ve just got to hang in there as it is a transitional period for the club at the moment with the new ground.
“We’ve had a bit of a hangover from Europe, but hopefully that is behind us now.”
Caersws hope their five-star midweek display can help bring much needed points in tonight’s home clash with Welshpool.
The Bluebirds have lost all three league outings so far but can take heart from their 5-1 win at Newtown in the Loosemores Cup.
“There were some very good performances, a lot of people stood out and it has given us something to build on,” said manager Mike Barton. “We all enjoyed the night but the sooner we get our first points the better.”
Midweek hat-trick hero Nathan Prodger looks to have cemented his place in the front line, while the Bluebirds could include new faces Sean Butler and former Welshpool defender Jon Jones.
Welshpool are lifted by successive away wins, but boss Tommi Morgan is anticipating a tough test tonight.
“I’m expecting a hard battle, they will be full of confidence after scoring five, we’re certainly not underestimating them,” he said. “After losing to Llanelli people wrote us off as usual, but the lads have bounced back well with six points from the last two games which speaks volume for their character.”
Striker Calvin Davies should be fit.