Date:Wednesday February 28 2007
They`ll be dancing in the streets of TNS
The New Saints are through to their first FAW Premier Cup final after knocking out favourites Cardiff City.
Cardiff, concentrating on promotion to the Premier League, fielded a weakened side and paid the price.
In an uneventful first-half, the only chance came to Scott Ruscoe who volleyed just wide. Then Bradley Middleton clearly handled the ball in the area only for the referee to wave play on.
The breakthrough came in the 56th minute when Mark Howard failed to gather a lofted cross and MICHAEL WILDE scored from close range. Howard, who recently returned from loan at Swansea, should have done better. The ex-Arsenal goalkeeper missed his attempted punch completely, he has now started two competitive matches for Cardiff and blunders against TNS and Barnet saw his side knocked out of the competition each time.
Cardiff nearly pulled one back immediately but Darcy Blake`s overhead kick was well saved by TNS skipper Gerard Doherty.
The Saints were denied another stonewall penalty when Blake hauled goal-scorer Wilde to the ground. A few minutes later, Blake nearly put the ball into his own net from a low cross.
Chris Gunter went close for Cardiff late on but was denied by the goalkeeper.
Doherty, praised by Rafa Benitez following his display in the Champions League qualifiers last season, was man of the match.
For Cardiff: Flood, Howard, Redan, Byrne, and Walton all flattered to deceive. On the other hand, youngsters Gunter, Blake, and Matt Smith did well.
The New Saints will now compete for the £100,000 prize money in the final against Wrexham, Newport County or Port Talbot Town.
Port Talbot will play the winner of Wrexham and Newport in the other semi-final.
Match Report submitted by Cardiff City fan and VitalCardiff member Chris Haines.
Date:Wednesday February 28 2007
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