Reds put troubles aside as late strike seals win
Bangor 1, Llanelli 2.
LLANELLI put their off-field troubles to one side to deliver the shock of the day in the Welsh Premier League.
A stunned silence fell over the Book Stadium nine minutes from time as Luke Bowen finished off a fine move by rounding goalkeeper Lee Idzi before slotting home.
Not only did it secure three precious points for his side, but it deprived the Citizens of their unbeaten home record.
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This triggered off a ferocious barrage by the home side, who laid siege to the Llanelli goal, but some magnificent defending combined with wasteful finishing by the hosts saw the visitors through to the final whistle and a memorable win.
The visitors welcomed back Martin Rose and Bowen, who had been notable absentees in the last few matches, although the latter had to be content with a seat on the bench.
Rose got in the first strike of the contest, forcing Idzi to keep out his well-struck shot. And when Geoff Kellaway was sent clear down the right by Chris Venables, he made inroads into the box before being challenged by Michael Johnston and both players went down, with Kellaway yellow-carded for his efforts.
The Reds were seeing plenty of the ball and Idzi was again called upon to block a near-post attempt by the impressive Kellaway.
But it was Bangor who took the lead after 13 minutes.
A deep cross found Chris Simm in space and his well-struck drive flashed past Craig Morris.
Despite this setback, the Reds continued to push forward with Kellaway curling an attempt off target, while a run by Chris Thomas took him into the box before he took one touch too many and the ball deflected for a corner.
Morris made a safe catch from a close-range header by Simm, but it was the visitors who stunned their opponents and silenced the large crowd by drawing level on the half hour.
Kellaway was again involved, this time getting to the line before crossing into the middle where Rose was on hand to turn the chance just inside the far post.
Stung by this reversal, it was the turn of the hosts to go on the offensive and Morris did well to keep out a strike from Simm with an outstretched leg.
Lee Surman was on hand to clear from the unguarded net when Morris came off his line to challenge Chris Jones, before the Reds made their first change with Bowen coming on to replace Craig Moses.
An Edwards free-kick was headed over by James Brewerton, while at the other end Idzi just managed to keep out a near-post effort by Kellaway following good play from Corey Jenkins.
With the clock ticking down, the Reds silenced the home support by taking the lead on 81 minutes when a slick build-up culminated in Rose finding Bowen in space, and he kept his head by rounding the goalkeeper before finding the bottom corner.
This signalled an all-out assault on the Reds goal, with Venables clearing off the line following a corner.
Bangor forced a number of corners as they tried desperately to find another success.
Lloyd Grist was in the right place to somehow prevent the ball from crossing the line, but at times the home side were their own worst enemies with several half-chances spurned, although they were also denied by some superb defending.
The frustration of the home side boiled over when there were loud appeals for a penalty after the ball was driven low into the area and appeared to strike the arm of a Reds player, but referee Mark Petch was unimpressed.
Somehow, despite the onslaught, the visitors hung on to claim the points.