Llandudno 1 – 1 Stafford Rangers
Friendly | 2nd August 2019 Report by Alan Gee
Rangers faced a tough test in their penultimate pre-season friendly as they visited a spirited and often more than capable Llandudno. While some of the play, particularly in the final third, left management frustrated, the opposition made sure Boro would not have an easy ride and there were chances at both ends, as neither side treated this as a meaningless fixture. Early play was somewhat disjointed as both sides settled and it was the hosts with the first goal threat as Bryn Roberts and then Dean Seager tested Lewis King, but he thwarted both. On nineteen minutes Rangers went close as Theo Bailey-Jones was fed down the right channel but his shot just cleared the bar as Shaun Pearson was left grasping air.
Rob Parry then went close for the hosts, but King again got down to deny with his own parry. On thirty-three minutes an excellent ball, from Jed Davies, down the left wing found Jake Charles who cut inside and from an acute angle, he lofted a shot over Pearson that went in off the post for the lead against the run of play. Only two minutes later, Llandudno struck back with some good work on the left from new boy Bailey Jackson and his near post cross was met with a powerful finish to make it one each. Rangers tried to impose themselves, before the break, as Charles went just wide and then Andy Haworth had a similar effort, before the half was rounded off with a real game of ‘handbags’ with most of both teams involved, but eventually ending in the right spirit. The second half saw Rangers yet again ring wholesale changes with six replacements, including new signing Joe Berks, coming on. This seemed to lift things a little as there was a bit more purpose and the hosts were on the back foot for a while. The hosts did have the first chance of the half as Lewis Sirrell stung King’s fingers from some twenty yards. Pearson was then called into action, denying Rangers, before the woodwork came to their aid as Tom Thorley headed against a post. Llandudno sub fons Fosu-Mensah then showed why he’d recently been signed by the hosts as, first of all, he robbed the Rangers defence and used some tidy footwork to feed Dan Stephens who shot over, before some more trickery some him shoot at the chest of King. Possession then seemed to switch, without too much incident or clear chances as both teams, while stubborn in defence, found it hard to force a winner, with Max Dixon’s lofted header onto the top of the bar being as close as Rangers came.
Llandudno starting line up Pearson, Marshall, Sirrell, Jackson, Stephens, Roberts, Hughes, Downey, Seager, Parry, Thomas
Rangers King, J. Burns, Hill (Bignot 45), Jones (D. Burns 45), Taylor (Coulson 45), Harvey (Green 44), Bailey-Jones (Berks), Thorley (Dixon 65), Charles (Garnett), Haworth (Sherratt), Davies