AC Pontymister welcomed Abertillery Bluebirds to the Longbridge on Saturday, with The Aces putting a halt to The Bluebirds unbeaten start to the season thanks a to an impressive 4-1 win.
Based on the current league table, Abertillery had the more formidable start to the season, and it was clear to see why as they forced the Pontymister keeper into a strong save, no more than forty five seconds after kick off. An early let off for the hosts. The Bluebirds would soon rue that missed opportunity though as The Aces began to pressure them in the final third. Abertillery defended well despite a number of dangerous deliveries from wide areas.
The deadlock was then broken roughly twenty five minutes in, and it was one to savour for the hosts’ central midfielder. After struggling to break down a tough Bluebirds defence in the opening stages, the impressive Laurie Kidman picked the ball up around twenty five yards out and set his sights on goal before rocketing a straight and powerful effort into the roof of the Abertillery net, leaving the keeper helpless. 1-0 to The Aces.
This didn’t deter the visitors though as they showed their promotion credentials by bouncing back with an equaliser soon after. A cross-come-shot from Jake Chivers down the right hand side was attacked by The Bluebirds forward, thus leaving oncoming goalkeeper Matthew Griffiths unsighted, with the ball then rolling into the far corner of the empty net without a touch from the forward. 1-1 and game on.
With half time looming, new signing Dan McLaughlin picked the ball up in a seemingly unthreatening position down the left hand side before carrying the ball forward to around thirty five yards from goal. The hosts couldn’t believe their luck as The Aces left back unleashed a goal of the season contender right into the top corner of the net from all of thirty five yards. Pontymister back in front.
As the second half commenced at 2-1, Abertillery took control of possession for the next twenty minutes or so, actively searching for a way back in the game. Some neat football was played by The Bluebirds midfield but The Aces seemed happy to concede possession in these deeper areas as they were rarely troubled in the final third. Matthew Griffiths of Pontymister was then forced into a strong save, and again gave his team a needed reminder that the game was far from over. Following a spell of dominance from the visitors, Pontymister managed to counter quickly on the seventy minute mark and won a penalty following some quick and skilful play by Lewis Davies down the left hand channel. Captain Tom Pratt then stepped up and appeared to put the game to bed as he calmly slotted the ball into the bottom left hand corner of the goal.
Following this, The Bluebirds made a few attacking changes in an attempt to salvage something from the match but this consequently left them open at the back. Substitute Luke Phasey was allowed to break the offside trap late on and coolly made it four to round off an impressive display by The Aces.
All in all a very good game of football and a great advert for Gwent County football as a whole. Next up for AC Pontymister is bottom of the table Marshfield, while Abertillery host table topping Lliswerry.