Ten goals shared in pre-season clash

By Owain Johns - August 1 2007
Ten goals shared in pre-season clash Goals were aplenty at Stafford Common on Tuesday as Garden Village and Welsh Premiership new-boys Neath Athletic shared ten goals between them. Read on for match details...

GARDEN VILLAGE  4 - 6  NEATH ATHLETIC

Pre-Season Friendly
Tuesday July 31, 2007

Despite their best efforts, Garden Village were unable to overcome a strong Neath Athletic side despite a very encouraging performance in the first of three pre-season friendlies at Stafford Common.

The home side welcomed back a number of players who missed Saturday's win at Clarbeston Road, including new forward Liam Soroka who made his debut as a striker alongside Ashley Richards.

After two attempts on goal Neath were in front on 11 minutes with a side-footed effort at the back post but nine minutes later the scores were level. Village were awarded a corner after David Evans' shot was blocked on the line and forced over the top, new signing Mark Jones took the resulting flag kick and sent it over the defence and into the top corner of the net for the equaliser.

Ashley Richards shot wide and Andy Hill struck the post for the visitors but Village's best effort of the half fell to Sam Brown on 34 minutes. A well placed cross-field pass from Cameron Hopkins found Brown who in turn swung and struck a half-volley to sting the hands of Neath 'keeper Deiniol Davies.

But two minutes later Neath were back in front, Andy Hill heading home a David D'Auria cross, and three minutes before half-time they increased their lead as poor defending allowed The Eagles a soft goal at the back post. Village, however, did pull one back as Liam Soroka won a penalty which was easily converted by David Rimmer on the stroke of half-time.

Disaster struck the home side early in the second-half as they foundthemselves 5-2 down within three minutes of the re-start. The first came 44 seconds into the second period as Andy Hill converted past Stuart Lloyd and two minutes later Lloyd was again beaten from close-range. Hill could have made it six shortly afterwards but he only just failed to hit the target.

Garden Village started to up the tempo after this and regularly threatened Neath's goals for the remainder of the second period.

With 63 minutes gone a fine finish from Liam Soroka - volleying an unstoppable shot from substitute Lee Rastatter's flick on - reduced the deficit to 5-3 and nine minutes later the former Ystradgynlais man sent a curling shot inches over the top.

Jarrod Price restored Neath's three-goal advantage with a lob on 79 minutes but another fine goal scored by the home side - a Lee Rastatter volley into the top corner - five minutes from the end ensured that this thrilling game ended 6-4.

Village: Matthew Martin; David Evans, David Rimmer, Gary Davies, Mark Jones; Marc Lloyd, Sam Brown, Anthony Wright, Cameron Hopkins; Ashley Richards, Liam Soroka.