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Reds earn emphatic win at Goytre United

IT was a triumphant return to Glenhafod Park for the former Goytre United management team of Lee John and Dylan Blain who, having taken over the reins at Llanelli Town, ensured their current club came away with an emphatic win.

After the dismal display at Llantwit Major the previous week, this was a breath of fresh air as they made light of the difficult playing conditions with every player contributing in some part to the success and putting their opponents to the sword.

To their credit, the home side also played its part in the contest and were always in the game, until goals in the dying stages killed off any hopes of a revival.

The visitors were missing a number of regulars from the starting line-up but coped admirably despite the losses, and were on the front foot from the outset, with a high cross by Adam Robbins to the far post being met by Jamie Baker whose header was parried and then safely grasped by Luke Probert in the home goal.

They continued in the same vein, with Thomas Hillman setting up a chance for Eli Phipps, but he took too long over his strike which was eventually blocked.

When the home side were awarded a free kick outside the box, Gavin Jones drove his finish narrowly off target.

Miles John was causing the Goytre defence all sorts of problems with his incisive bursts up the flank, and he was instrumental in setting up the opening Reds goal on 14 minutes with a cross low into the goalmouth which was met by Dylan Williams, and although Probert initially kept it out the ball rebounded off home defender Jamal Roberts into the net for an own goal.

If this was unfortunate, there was nothing lucky when the visitors extended the lead just five minutes later with Williams turning provider with a delivery into the middle where Phipps was on hand to guide his finish beyond Probert.

Evan Williams in the Reds` goal had barely been tested, but when called upon did so with confidence in tricky wet conditions, dealing cleanly and safely with any potential threats in the box, and controlling his area well.

His counterpart did well to pull off a great double save when a Hillman free kick caused problems for the home defence in front of the net before, out of the blue, Goytre were back in contention courtesy of a rare error by Sean Cronin, normally the most reliable of defenders, when he elected to attempt to play a pass back to Williams but woefully under-hit it, allowing Steffan Roberts to gratefully accept the gift by curling his finish over the stranded keeper into an empty net after 38 minutes.

With the game finely poised going into the second half, the visitors were the first to show when Joe Hopkins found Hillman who in turn played in Phipps, but he was off target with his finish.

Goytre were causing their opponents a few more problems than they had displayed in the first half without seriously offering any potential threat, before the Reds asserted themselves again with the impressive Hillman finding Taylor Marsh whose run took him to the near post before Probert blocked his attempt.

Hopkins put Hillman clear again, but this time a deflection took the ball into the hands of the home keeper, before he was beaten again on 68 minutes with Hillman again involved, this time playing in Cronin who then set up Phipps to slot home to complete his brace.

This seemed to have an adverse affect on the home side who were now finding it increasingly difficult to contain their opponents, although in a rare attack Williams had to be alert to come off his line to deny Jones when he got clear down the middle at the expense of a corner.

Hillman was forced off injured with a quarter of an hour remaining to be replaced by Nathan Logan, and shortly after Cronin missed an absolute sitter when he somehow contrived to lift his finish from a John assist over the top from ten yards.

As it transpired, this did not have too much of an impact on the final outcome as two further goals in the space of seven minutes sealed the win.

The fourth arrived in the 81st minute courtesy of a strong run by Phipps who played the ball across the box to the back post where Logan gained possession before finding the net from close range.

Seven minutes later Logan turned provider when his delivery into the middle was met by Jay Rumbelow, who had only been on the field for three minutes as a replacement for Cronin, and he made no mistake by rifling his finish past Probert to put the seal on a highly satisfactory afternoon.

The win elevates the Reds to second in the table, four points adrift of leaders Barry Town United, but now above Briton Ferry Llansawel who suffered their first defeat of the season at the hands of local rivals, Afan Lido.

They are without a game next weekend, but entertain Trefelin BGC at Stebonheath on Tuesday, December 6, kick off 7.30pm.