“On a night that looked more like a local curfew was in place rather than an Integro League Cup game, Colwyn Bay hosted Warrington Town in this first round encounter.
And if the hundred and thirty three supporters left the game feeling a little bemused, it wasn’t surprising. To quote the old cliche ‘it was a game of two halves‘ was never more apparent with both sides playing some excellent football in the process.
Straight from the kick off, Town went on the offensive and came close to opening the scoring in the second minute through a shot by Connor Hughes that went narrowly wide.
This seemed to stir the Bay into action and in the fourth minute Jamie Menagh let fly a blistering shot that the keeper could only parry and Jack Kelleher was there to volley the loose ball into the Warrington net.
Kelleher came close again in the eighth minute that brought out an excellent save from Ben Ascroft in the Warrington goal. By now it was all Colwyn Bay and when the Bay full back Kyle Jacobs, let fly with a left foot drive that rattled Ascroft’s far post, you would think that Colwyn would run away with it.
Town however, always looked dangerous going forward and in the fourteenth minute, Griffiths was lucky to avoid a yellow card for a clumsy challenge on Abou Sanogo.
Both teams were playing some excellent open football which did credit to both sides and considering Warrington are in a higher league, the gulf between them seemed negligible.
During a ten minute spell in the first half, the game seemed to have reached a stalemate with two good midfield’s trying to break each other down and gain some sort of advantage. However, Jamie Rainford had other ideas when he got in a shot at goal but straight into the arms of the keeper when really he should have made more of it.
Kris Leigh in the Bay goal was by far the busier of the two keepers but I would suggest that back passes contributed to it.
After the half hour mark, Warrington were the busiest defensively with Colwyn Bay creating plenty of chances but unable to put them away.
Then, in the thirty fourth minute, Kelleher was up-ended just inside the Warrington area and the referee Daniel Bruce had no hesitation in pointing to the penalty spot. Ascroft saved from Rainford’s spot kick and the ball was played straight up field by the Town defence.
Half Time: Colwyn Bay 1 Warrington Town 0
The way the first half was played it seemed highly probable that more goals were to come and as Warrington upped the pace of the game it left Colwyn with a lot of work to do.
In the forty seventh minute, Bay’s skipper Sam Barnes, was disposessed just inside his own half and from the ensuing Warrington break Kyle Jacobs, who had a really good game at right back, brought down Town’s captain Gerard Kinsella in the box.
Penalty awarded and from Aboubacar Sanogo’s spot kick, Warrington draw level.
The way that Warrington had moved the game up a gear put pressure on the Bay who seemed unable to come to terms with it until later in the game.
Eighteen year old George Hughes, Colwyn’s number eight, currently on loan from Shrewsbury Town, particularly impressed and after setting up some good passing football down Town’s left flank, it unfortunately for the Bay, came to nothing.
Warrington’s pace is beginning to tell and in the fifty ninth minute James Brannigan hit a low shot that beat Bay keeper Kris Leigh and rebounded off his post only for Connor Hughes to guide the ball home.
Town’s pace is unrelenting and in the sixty fourth minute a Warrington free kick is taken by Liam Lambert but Kris Leigh can only palm the ball onto the head of Sanogo who makes it 3 – 1.
Warrington were pushing the Bay back at every opportunity, but Colwyn did get forward on a few occasions with Kyle Jacobs and George Hughes going narrowly wide.
From the eighty minute mark, Bay seem to come more into the game and after the referee had given three added minutes of play, up comes Jamie Rainford and squeezes the ball past Ben Ascroft at his near post from a tight angle in the 93rd minute.
It seems a pity that Colwyn Bay FC fall behind other clubs in the attendances when really they should be drawing in gates a couple of hundred more than they are at present. That being said, they played some lovely football throughout the game and I look forward to visiting again in the future.
Team: Leigh, Jacobs, Turner, Horrocks (Andrews), Griffith, S Barnes (C), Rutter, Hughes, Rainford, Menagh, Kelleher. Unused subs: Cooper, L Barnes, Brizell, Booth.
Bay’s next game is away to Radcliffe Borough this Saturday, 21st October, kick-off 3pm