A 2-2 home draw against Cardiff Met was good enough to earn the point that guaranteed Flint a top half finish in the JD Cymru Premier League for this season, a tremendous achievement by Neil Gibson and his staff.
The game itself was often a scrappy affair, as a blustery wind meant it was difficult to play any constructive football.
Met took an early lead following a free kick awarded after Dan Roberts had brought down their new signing Sam Jones on 3 minutes. Full back Matthew Chubb was left unattended at the far post to guide home the resulting delivery, and put the visitors 1-0 up.
The rest of the half largely belonged to Flint, although the front two of Met, Jones and Adam Roskrow, always posed a threat with their pace and closing down, meaning balls out from the back were often hurried from the home side.
But it didn’t take too long for Flint to get back on terms, equalising on 9 minutes. Callum Bratley made a good break with the ball, and slipped it through to Jack Kenny, who had just managed to keep himself onside. Kenny centred the ball and it was met sweetly by Conor Harwood, who flashed a shot inside the post.
Playing largely against a swirling wind, Flint did their best to play some controlled football, and created a great opportunity on 35 minutes. Kai Edwards delivered an excellent cross into the danger area, and the incoming Sam Hart just failed to connect with it, when any touch would almost certainly have resulted in a goal.
But just a few minutes before the break, Flint did get themselves ahead, A free kick from the right was initially half cleared, but the ball was returned, taking a defection that caused it to spiral high up in the air, before being held up in the wind.
Kai Edwards, who had gone up for the initial free kick, was perfectly placed to head it back across goal from just beyond the far post, and Jack Kenny was on hand to apply a close range finish.
Right on half time Flint could have further increased the lead. From a corner, Ben Nash got in a strong header that was blocked on the line. The loose ball then fell to Harwood a little further out, but he hurriedly blazed it high over the bar.
The second half was mostly a non-descript affair. The main danger from Flint came from corner deliveries, as they tried to use the wind to maximum effort to exert pressure on Alex Lang in the Met goal. From open play, though, they struggled to create any clear cut chances, and were too often guilty of overhitting the ball to their forwards.
As the game wore on, Met sensed an opportunity to get back on level terms, and took their chance on 75 minutes. Chubb crossed from the right, and Jones provided a fine looping header from 12 yards that beat Ryan Woods and sailed into the net.
Both sides then seemed content with a draw, although Met substitute did test Woods with a long range strike that the Flint keeper gratefully fell onto.
Combined with the weekend’s other results the point was good enough to secure the coveted top six spot for the Silkmen, with two games of phase 1 to spare.
Report by Nigel Sheen
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