CPD Y Rhyl 1879 tasted cup success and went to the summit of the North Wales Coast Football Association East League Premier Division after two wins in an unforgettable week for the club.

The first showpiece final of the 2021-22 season saw Rhyl face CPD Llannefydd in the final on Wednesday (April 20) in front of an impressive 600+ crowd, being played at the Four Crosses Construction Arena.

The deadlock was finally broken on the stroke of half time when youngster Zac Tyler-Holland whipped in a delightful corner from the right, finding an unchallenged Ollie Staveley.

Staveley was able to head the ball back across goal to no-nonsense defender Miles Todd, who flicked the ball past goalkeeper Elias Jones in the Llannefydd goal, ensuring the Lilywhites went into the break 1-0 to the good.


Dominant Rhyl win closes the gap to two points at the top of the table

In the second half, Llannefydd continued to pile the pressure on the 1879 defence, but it was the Rhyl side who found the net again when the ball fell to experienced midfielder Michael Walsh on the halfway line.

Walsh carried the ball forward, then spotted Llannefydd keeper Jones off his line, finding the net from more than 35 yards as he floated the ball over the outstretched Jones in off the post, leading to mass celebrations from the Lilywhites faithful.

The sound of referee Mark James blowing the final whistle led to joyous scenes from the Lilywhites faithful, players and management.

Manager Gareth Thomas added after the game: “I’m really happy with the performance and the win, but knackered if I’m being honest; just an emotional rollercoaster, these finals - we got the win and that’s all that matters.

“At the end of the day, we can never forget the history of the old club. I have watched Rhyl for years when they were winning everything, but we can’t change that.

“We were asked to come in and do a job for the new club, we were given a priority which was the league, and we need four more wins for that.

“But this cup tonight is for the supporters who stuck loyal to it, and for the hard-working committee who are putting a lot of hours in, and the fans’ association who were here in their numbers tonight.

“It’s for them more than anything, not the players - they will get their bread and butter, hopefully, in four or five games when hopefully we get the league wrapped up.

“It is not a formality, but seven games to go and we need five wins.

“We have said all along the league is the priority and the cups are just a bonus.”

Thomas then took the Lilywhites to play in the league at the picturesque Cae Nant ground in Llandyrnog on Saturday, knowing if results went their way, they could find themselves at the top of the table.

With 37 minutes played, it was bustling front man Ellis who proved first to get on the scoresheet in typically bullish fashion, as he latched on to a through ball, finding the bottom-right corner with a left footed strike.

Just five minutes later, Llandyrnog forced an equaliser following a cross shot which the unfortunate keeper Ryan Roberts couldn’t quite hold on to.

It found its way into the bottom-right corner, taking the game to 1-1 at the break.

The second half started in a similar vein to the first with the Lilywhites on the front foot, taking just two minutes to secure the second goal of the game.

Returning forward Macauley Taylor carved out an opportunity for an overhead kick on the edge of the box, making no mistake, looping the ball over home keeper Dylan Jones’ head taking the score to 2-1 with 47 minutes played.

Veteran forward Carl Lamb then became provider, winning an aerial battle, which sent Ellis through on goal.

Ellis made no mistake, with an excellent finish taking the game to 3-1 with 56 minutes played.

And Tom Cain later whipped in a delightful cross from the left-hand side, finding an unmarked Lamb, who made no mistake firing a header into the bottom-right corner, making it 4-1 with just 10 minutes to play.

Both sides saw out the final 10 minutes with little to report, 1879 leaving Cae Nant with all three points and the top spot in the NWCFA East League Premier Division.

Thomas added after the game: “Happy to get all three points after a poor first half, also pleased to get 60 minutes out of returning Macauley Taylor.

“Another one ticked off; we go again Wednesday.”

Next up, the Lilywhites travel to Prestatyn Sports in the league on Wednesday, April 27, with an early kick off time of 6.15pm.