Underdogs hoping for JD Welsh Cup upsets
Domestic
18 February 2022

Underdogs hoping for JD Welsh Cup upsets

The quarter-finals of the JD Welsh Cup take place on Saturday with Tier 2 teams Taffs Well, Guilsfield and Colwyn Bay all looking to cause upsets against their opponents from the JD Cymru Premier.

Watch Live

JD Welsh Cup Quarter Final

Penybont vs Taffs Well

  • Saturday, 19 February 2022
  • Kick off: 12:45pm
  • Live: Sgorio on S4C from 12:30pm

Taffs Well are the only team from the JD Cymru South remaining in the competition and manager Craig Sampson's side will take on Penybont in front of the live Sgorio cameras at the SDM Glass Stadium in the first match of the day (12.45pm). Currently seventh in the table, Taffs Well head to Penybont in fine form having won their last five league games, while victories over Abergavenny Town, Goytre United, Llantwit Major and Buckley Town have taken the side into the last eight of the competition.

“The best thing about Taffs Well is the sense of community spirit,” explained Sampson to Sgorio recently. “We've got a great connection with the local schools and the academy and we've got a good group of young local lads who really take pride in wearing the shirt each week. It's a big occasion for everyone involved at the football club including myself and the boys are raring to go. We'll do all the preparation we can behind the scenes and get ready for the big occasion. We've been underdogs in the last three rounds of the competition and our boys have stepped up to the challenge, so hopefully, we can do that again.”

Penybont have progressed to the last eight with wins over Undy Athletic, Carmbrian & Clydach Vale and a penalty shoot-out success against Caernarfon Town in the last round, but they are also enjoying a superb season in the JD Cymru Premier and are pushing for a European place. Manager Rhys Griffiths was no stranger to domestic success as a player, and recently boosted their ranks with the signing of former Swansea City, Bournemouth and Cymru midfielder Shaun MacDonald. Meanwhile, the exciting Kostya Georgievsky returned to the side last weekend after a lengthy injury and is in contention to start on Saturday. 

Another former Cymru international looking to cause an upset this weekend is Steve Evans as he takes charge of his first JD Welsh Cup tie as Colwyn Bay head to current Welsh champions Connah's Quay Nomads. Evans replaced Craig Hogg as manager at Llanelian Road last month and is no stranger to domestic silverware having been an integral part of The New Saints' success under current Nomads manager Craig Harrison. Colwyn Bay are currently fourth in the JD Cymru North table while the Nomads have struggled to defend their league title and sit sixth. However, Harrison has already guided his side to silverware this season having claimed the Nathaniel MG Cup earlier this month.

Guilsfield of the JD Cymru North have the most formidable draw of the round as they head to Park Hall to take on The New Saints. Despite sitting in third place in the table, Guilsfield are without a win in their last five league games, while Anthony Limbrick's Saints have opened up an incredible 21-point lead at the top of the JD Cymru Premier. However, The New Saints needed penalties to defeat Tier 2 side Carmarthen Town in the last round after previously dispatching Llanrwst United and Conwy Borough. 

Meanwhile, Guilsfield have seen off the challenge of Llandudno Albion, Dinas Powys and Swansea University to reach the last eight. Iwan Matthews levelled for Guilsfield in their 1-1 draw with Ruthin Town at the weekend, and the match offered the side an early introduction to this Saturday's surroundings as the JD Cymru North fixture was played at Park Hall. Manager Nathan Leonard is no stranger to Park Hall either as he is also a coach within The New Saints' academy, and while he will have respect for the size of the challenge ahead, he will be backing his side to rise to the occasion and continue their excellent cup form despite losing ground at the top of the JD Cymru North in recent weeks.

Bala Town won the JD Welsh Cup for the only time in their history in 2017, while Aberystwyth Town, who enjoyed their only success in the competition back in 1900, last reached the final in 2018. The two teams from the JD Cymru Premier now meet at Maes Tegid on Saturday for a place in the last four. A hat-trick from captain Chris Venables earned Bala Town a 3-1 win over Haverfordwest County in the last round while Aberystwyth Town needed penalties to see off the challenge of third-tier outfit Saltney Town. An own goal from Alex Darlington earned Bala Town a 1-0 win over Aberystwyth Town when the two sides met in the league back in August, but that will have little bearing on the outcome this weekend.

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The JD Welsh Cup Draw Show for the Semi-Finals will be broadcast across FA Wales YouTube and Facebook channels on Monday, 21 February at 8pm.