Airbus UK Broughton Football Club

 The Wingmakers - What the papers say about us



December 29
Craig Harrison rues Airbus UK Broughton's wastefulness

AIRBUS manager Craig Harrison was disappointed his team did not kill off Saturday’s clash long before Druids’ 85th minute equaliser.

The Wingmakers enjoyed the perfect start when Marc Lloyd Williams headed home a Danny Desormeaux cross after seven minutes, but paid for missed chances when Cefn substitute Gary Penlington levelled late.

“In general it was a poor game, we didn’t play well, but we still should have had the game dead and buried before they equalised,” said Harrison.

“The quality of our final ball wasn’t fantastic. As the game went on Druids grew in confidence and in the last 10 to 15 minutes really went for it.”

The hosts had strong penalty claims turned down when Gareth Sudlow was felled, while sub James McIntosh should have put the game beyond doubt but was denied by keeper Chris Mullock’s legs.

Daily Post

December 26
Harrison hopes Airbus can make it six of the best with double Welsh Premier league win

AIRBUS UK Broughton boss Craig Harrison will be expecting six points from his side’s festive double header against struggling Cefn Druids – but he’s fully aware of any potential stumbling blocks.

Harrison’s men have performed heroically against the Welsh Premier League’s leading sides this term but have stuttered somewhat against teams they’ve been expected to beat.

But Harrison is not going to take Druids lightly, despite the fact the visitors have not won since September 11 and are pointless on their travels this season.

“Both games, we’d be expected to go and win but it’s been a case this season that it hasn’t always gone to plan,” said the former Middlesbrough defender.

“With Welshpool and Bala, we were expected to win both games and we lost both at home so we’re going to try and not take it lightly, as that’s what’s happened in the past when we haven’t played too well and picked up two bad results. But we are looking to take the maximum six points from the two games.

“The important thing is to maybe get an early goal because we haven’t done too well against teams who sit back and defend by getting bodies behind the ball. We are too busy on the offensive and sometimes make silly mistakes at the back. Not just defensively but as a team.

“When we play attacking teams, our concentration seems to be a bit better as they open up and it leaves us space to counter.”

Airbus have been training at Wrexham FC’s Colliers Park, taking advantage of the Dragons’ all-weather pitches.

Carl Owen would have been a doubt last weekend but is back in contention for the Boxing Day clash at the Airfield (2.30pm). But the main obstacle Airbus will probably face is the weather, which threatens to wreak havoc again.

Flintshire Chronicle

December 14
Neath fortunate to be presented with a point

A POINT was enough to return Neath to fourth spot in the Welsh Premier yesterday, but it was a fortunate outcome for Andy Dyer’s side who fell away badly after the break

The hosts created virtually nothing all afternoon and the only threat to an impressive Airbus rearguard came from Chris Llewellyn’s in-swinging corners and Ian Hillier’s long throws into the box.

These were dealt with competently, especially by central defenders Rhys Roberts and Mark Allen, whose last-ditch tackle on Neath’s Llewellyn in the final minute maintained the status quo.

But the Wingmakers, who remain eighth and look a good bet to be part of the super league next season, will rue several clear-cut chances in the second half that were wasted.

Ryan Edwards found ace striker Marc Lloyd Williams 10 yards out, but he slightly missed a perfect contact with his head and the ball flew wide.

Paul McManus had an even better opportunity minutes later but fired wide when one-on-one with goalkeeper Wyn Walters and substitute James McIntosh just failed to meet another headed opportunity crisply.

Ryan Edwards brought a sensational parry from Walters as the visitors piled forward in pursuit of a deserved win, but the stalemate held until the final whistle.

“I’ve got mixed feelings about the result as we had a number of chances to win it,” said Airbus manager Craig Harrison.

“I’m very proud of the boys, I thought they did brilliantly. We worked hard – we had to against their set-pieces – created the better chances and our goalkeeper has not had one single save to make all afternoon.”

“Our aim since day one of this season has been to finish in the top 10 and I firmly believe we have the players to achieve that.”

Eagles manager Andrew Dyer, who blasted his players after the match, admitted: “I’m very disappointed as we showed little desire and that is not acceptable.

“We were lucky to draw. I thought Airbus did fantastically well and looked a very good, well-organised side.

“But our statistician tells me we had 18 corners and 12 Ian Hillier long throws into the box and we totally failed to get onto the second ball.

“Sometimes in games like this, when defences are on top, you have to get into the heart of their box and win the ball.

“You cannot win pretty all the time.”

Western Mail

December 13
Airbus are challenged

AIRBUS UK Broughton boss Craig Harrison has challenged his players to bounce back from a disappointing loss to Bala Town by getting a positive result at Neath tomorrow.

The Wingmakers were sunk by John Toner’s 85th minute winner for the Lakesiders at The Airfield.

“It was a poor result but I can’t complain,” said Harrison. “We’ve still won three of our last four games and only conceded one goal. I can’t hammer the players for that, but I’ll be telling them Sunday offers a big opportunity to bounce back in style.”

Daily Post

December 3
Harrison delighted with Airbus new found maturity

AIRBUS UK Broughton are coming of age, according to proud boss Craig Harrison, and an added sense of maturity has put the club on the verge of their own Welsh Premier League record.

The Wingmakers are now just five points off the top three, in eighth position, and have equalled a club-record three Welsh Premier League victories in succession after beating Porthmadog 1-0.

Victory against surprise package Bala tomorrow night (7.30) would see them beat that feat and, after recent form, Craig Harrison’s men are certainly looking capable. They have already earned a record three clean sheets on the spin – and Harrison is rightly delighted with his most successful period since taking charge at The Airfield in July 2008.

“We won every game last month and didn’t concede a goal,” beamed the manager.

“The lads have come together as a team and a group. The new lads are realising what I want, and the older lads are realising that with myself, standards will need to be raised all the time on the pitch and they’ve really just done everything I’ve asked them to.

“They’re a bit more mature, they’re learning from their mistakes, they’re not making the same mistakes again.

Everyone has played really well in the last three games and nobody has had a bad game.

Veteran striker Marc Lloyd Williams – who, amazingly for him, has not found the net during the side’s purple patch – made his 400th WPL appearance against former club Port, and Harrison couldn’t be happier with his frontmen.

“You look at Jiws and he hasn’t scored for four games,” said the ex-Middlesbrough man. “People are saying, oh, but he’s a goalscorer. But he’s not, he’s much more than that. He holds the ball up well, he’s good in the air and he brings people into the game.

“And Carl Owen for me is fantastic. All the new lads I signed in pre-season have done really well but no-one tries as much as Carlo. For me, he’s the best all-round centre forward in the league.

“Rhyl are playing with one up front, TNS are playing with a different formation and a few other teams play with one up front. As a partnership, we’ve got it spot-on and it’s reaping the rewards.

“There’s goals being scored from all over the pitch as well and, when you look at it, we’ve got the third or fourth best record of goals against and the third or fourth best record of goals scored.

“There’s people at the club who have never been involved with a team who have a plus goal difference!

And Harrison is happy to see his side knuckle down when needs must.

“Obviously, you can’t beat winning and the game is a results-business and that’s the be-all and end-all really,” he added. “I think the lads are starting to realise that as well. It wasn’t a pretty game and the conditions are terrible, but we adapted to that better and we deserved to win.

“Maybe at the start of the season, or last season, we wouldn’t have won that game. We would have got beat or drew because we’d have just concentrated on playing football, instead of scrapping as well.”

Daily Post

November 23
Gaffer happy with 3 points against Newtown

HANDLING the difficult conditions better than their opponents was the key to Airbus winning Saturday’s battle at The Airfield, believes manager Craig Harrison.

The Wingmakers cemented their position in the top eight by making it back-to-back home victories – and two successive clean sheets – at the expense of the Robins.

"The conditions spoiled it a little," admitted Harrison. "I know the way Darren Ryan (Newtown manager) likes to play and that is, like ourselves, to keep it on the floor, but these were not conditions in which to play football.

"On a nice day, on a nice pitch, we’d have seen a nice spectacle, but the wind and rain and condition of the pitch made that impossible and I think the key to our victory was we played the conditions better than they did."I felt we dominated from start to finish; they did put us under a bit of pressure in the second half but didn’t really threaten to score apart from a couple of long range efforts which Kristian Rogers dealt comfortably enough with."

Despite having the wind at their backs in the first half, the hosts struggled to break down the visitors although they were unlucky not to win a penalty when Newtown’s Andrew Thomas appeared to control the ball with his arm.

The breakthrough eventually came after 35 minutes when Danny Desormeaux’s delivery was knocked down by Matty Woodward for striker Carl Owen to score.

After the break Newtown pressed for the equaliser but lacked a cutting edge up front.

Airbus clinched the points two minutes from time when Matty Cook fed the ball down the right-hand channel and Desormeaux reached the ball ahead of advancing keeper Dave Maguire to make it 2-0.

The Welsh Premier’s record marksman Marc Lloyd Williams had a rare off day for the Wingmakers, missing a couple of gilt-edged opportunities.

"He joked that he’d miss his mouth with his dinner afterwards," added Harrison. "He missed four or five good opportunities, but three or four of those he created himself.

"On another day he’d have scored a hat-trick, but Jiws is now working harder than before to bring others into play and he’s become a provider as well as a scorer."

There is now a four-point gap between Airbus in eighth and the next-placed club and Harrison is hoping to further improve on that position with matches against Porthmadog and Bala Town coming up.

Victory over Port at the Traeth next Saturday would mean the Airmen winning three in a row in the Welsh Premier for only the second time since they joined the league in 2004/05.

Flintshire Chronicle

November 22
Desormeaux is the destroyer

Airbus UK 2-0 Newtown

AIRBUS defied horrendous weather to chalk up their fifth win of the campaign in a classic game of two halves.

The Wingmakers bossed the opening half and should have taken the lead after just one minute but Marc Lloyd Williams squandered what looked like quite an easy chance in a one-on-one with keeper Dave Maguire.

Williams fluffed another great opportunity before Airbus did in fact break the deadlock in the 35th minute when Carl Owen glided a header past Maguire from a Danny Desormeaux cross.

The second half, however, was totally dominated by Newtown but they failed to make any impact in front of goal and paid the price. They threw caution to the wind late on and left gaps at the back.

Desormeaux chased a lost cause and was able to double his side’s account.

He ran down the right and, after Maguire rushed out and made a hash of things, was able to roll the ball into an empty net.

But it will be an afternoon Lloyd-Williams will want to forget as he wasted two chances late on.

Wales on Sunday

November 20
Airbus UK Broughton fired-up for Newtown clash

A FRUSTRATED Airbus UK Broughton are chomping at the bit following their rained-off game on Friday night.

The Wingmakers welcome Newton to the Airfield on Saturday (2.30pm) for a Welsh Premier League clash hoping to continue their fine record against the Mid Walians.

The Wingmakers have not lost to Newtown since December 2006 and, having seen their showdown at Bangor City hit by the weather, boss Craig Harrison said: “I don’t think there will be any problem with motivation.

“The lads will be chomping at the bit as they were disappointed the Bangor game was off. They will be up for this game.

“It was frustrating for us but we have been training hard.

“It would have been nice to have kept the momentum going after the win over Gap Connah's Quay but it didn’t happen.

Harrison expects a good game of football on Saturday, aided by the Airbus pitch.

“Newtown are a decent team, they will try and get the ball down and pass it same as us,” he said. “It looks like it’s going to be a good game.

“Our pitch is brilliant this season, a great surface to play on, so it should be a good football game hopefully.

“James McIntosh is our only long-term injury, he’s been training this week but he won’t be involved against Newtown, and Ashley Williams is suspended.”

Flintshire Chronicle

November 1
ANDY OLSEN was the toast of half of Deeside

ANDY OLSEN was the toast of half of Deeside after his extra-time clincher swept Connah’s Quay into the last 16 in this nail-biting local derby.

Facing each other for the first time this season, the local rivals were deadlocked on 2-2 at the end of normal time, and it was not until the 13th minute of the second period of extra-time that Olsen pounced with his golden second goal, heading in Stuart Cook’s corner from seven yards to seal this pulsating thriller.

It was target-man Olsen who had broken the stalemate two minutes before the break, only for Airbus defender Rhys Roberts to venture upfield to level with a header just after the hour mark.

A penalty for a push in the box on Mike Hayes gave Tom Baker the chance to fire Quay ahead again from the penalty spot on 76 minutes.

In a frenetic climax, Giovanni Felicello put the Wingmakers level with a scorching free-kick with two minutes remaining, but the Quay weren’t to be caught a third time as Olsen had the last word.

Wales on Sunday

October 31
Nomads v Wingmakers

Airbus UK Broughton manager Craig Harrison believes his team’s improved firepower this season can carry them to victory in today’s Welsh Cup third round derby at Gap Connah’s Quay.

Harrison has been delighted by the goals for ratio the Wingmakers have produced in the Welsh Premier, although concessions at the other end, particularly late on in games, have been cause for concern.

“If we can keep a clean sheet, I’m confident we’ll create enough chances to win the game,” he said. “Our goalscoring has improved massively this season and reflects the attacking style we play.”

Left-back Gio Feliciello is available again after suspension so Harrison has a full squad with the exception of long-term casualty James McIntosh.

Dave Jones

October 29
Harrison ready for cup quest

CRAIG Harrison was left kicking himself again as Airbus UK Broughton fell to another late Welsh Premier League defeat on Saturday – and now he is calling on his side to cut out silly mistakes in the run-up to their Welsh Cup tie this weekend.
The Wingmakers crashed 2-1 at Port Talbot Town, conceding the second in the 84th minute as Harrison’s men went in search of a winner themselves.
Marc Lloyd-Williams netted his 10th goal of the campaign to bring Airbus level in the 61st minute – five minutes after the visitors fell behind.
Now Harrison is preparing his side for their crunch Welsh Cup third-round clash at local rivals Gap Connah’s Quay on Saturday (2pm).
“The encouraging part is we played pretty well (against Port Talbot) and even their manager said we deserved to win the game,” said the 31-year-old boss.
“But conceding late goals is becoming a bit of a bad habit and it’s up to me and the coaches to sort it out. I don’t know whether it’s fitness or concentration, or confidence, but we’re working in training to hopefully get rid of these silly mistakes.”
If Airbus went on to win the Welsh Cup, it would be their first major trophy triumph – and provide a route into the Europa League preliminary rounds.
“I always send a team out to win and it will be no different this season in the cup or the league,” said Harrison.
“We’ll be positive, we’ll be on the front foot, we’ll get the ball down and pass and hopefully score as many goals as we can.
“Hopefully the work we’re doing with the back five, the goalkeeper and set plays will pay off with a clean sheet.”
And the Airbus boss is predicting a decent first Flintshire derby of the campaign after running the rule over Nomads recently.
“It’s going to be a tough game. I’ve seen Connah’s Quay a couple of times, including against Prestatyn recently and they were the better team in the first half.
“They move the ball around well, so it’s going to be a good game that everyone is looking forward to. I imagine Mark McGregor is looking forward to it and I definitely am.
Giovanni Feliciello is back in contention after a one-match ban but James McIntosh will probably be out of action until after Christmas.
Flintshire Chronicle

October 25
McCreesh the hero for Port Talbot

THE Steelmen won this fascinating game with Liam McCreesh the goal-scoring hero.

In blustery conditions neither side was able to craft a worthwhile opening in the first half and a stalemate seemed likely.

That changed five minutes into the second half when Neil Thomas struck from 20 yards with a fine shot to put the Steelmen in front.

It was very much the boost the home side needed but midway through the second period the league’s top all-time scorer Marc Lloyd Williams pounced in typical style to level matters.

He needed no second invitation to cash in on a mistake in the Port Talbot defence and rifled the ball home with aplomb.

It was at this point that Airbus sensed victory and appeared odds on to go on to snatch the three points as they took control in the middle of the park.

But Port Talbot hung on and tree minutes from time snatched the winner when McCreesh back-heeled the ball into the net from Martin Rose’s supply.

Wales on Sunday

October 23
Airbus on course to make it a top 10 hit


AIRBUS UK Broughton have passed the quarter-way stage of the Welsh Premier League campaign, and are well on course to achieving their ambition of a top-10 finish.

The Wingmakers were given the most difficult start to the 2009-10 season with opening games against last season’s top-three Llanelli, champions Rhyl and TNS.

But from the kick-off, Craig Harrison’s men proved more than a match for the division’s big guns and can consider themselves unlucky at not registering more points.

With nine WPL games under their belts so far, Airbus have a consistent record of three wins, four draws and two defeats.

The club can also boast the league’s leading scorer as summer signing Marc Lloyd-Williams tops the rankings with nine of Airbus’ 20 goals.

And it was Lloyd-Williams who opened the scoring in their comprehensive 4-0 success at struggling Caersws on Saturday.

The hotshot struck on 18 minutes with a fortuitous deflected effort, and Danny Desormeaux doubled their lead for a 2-0 half-time cushion.

Carl Owen made it three just five minutes after the turnaround and Desormeaux chipped in once more to make it 4-0.

The in-form midfielder was then left kicking himself on 74 minutes when he threw away the chance of becoming the first-ever player to net a Welsh Premier League hat-trick for the Wingmakers, David Jones producing a fine penalty save to deny Desormeaux the honour.

Eighth-placed Airbus make the long journey to Port Talbot Town on Saturday (2.30pm), who are just a point and place behind them in the table.

The Wingmakers leapfrogged the South Walians last weekend after Town crashed to a 3-1 defeat at Carmarthen Town.

Evening Post

October 23
Port Talbot boss seeking consistency

PORT Talbot seek to bounce back from defeat at Carmarthen last week when Airbus UK visit the GenQuip Stadium.

The Wingmakers recruited strongly in the summer and have started their season well, especially away from home where they have gathered eight points from five matches.

They lie eighth, a point ahead of the Steelmen, who have only won at home once so far this term.

Port Talbot manager Mark Jones said: "People say Airbus have started well and we have been a little disappointing, but we are only a point behind them," he said.

"It was disappointing last week but I don't want to harp on about it as I know we can do so much better.

"This is the start of a very big week for us as we follow up the match against Airbus with two cup matches, and we want to make progress in all three competitions over the next eight days.

"We have a good run of games leading up to Christmas with the opportunity to get some points on the board, but we must show a little more consistency."

Jones earmarked prolific striker Marc Lloyd Williams as the player to watch.

"We have got to be mean at the back," he added.

"Marc is a legend in this league and is still scoring goals for fun so we need to keep a close eye on him."

Evening Post

October 11
Carmarthen Town website match report

Carmarthen Town showed great character and spirit to overturn a 2-0 deficit and battle back for a share of the points. Ryan Edwards had put the hosts ahead just after the hour, netting a contentious penalty, and when league record holder Mark Lloyd Williams hit a superb half volley seven minutes later to extend the Wingmakers’ lead it looked as if Town would lose their 100% record at the Airfield.

With Manager Deryn Brace having introduced all three substitutes Town looked to reduce the deficit and when Dyfan Pierce’s curling free kick was glanced home by Tim Hicks with twelve minutes remaining Town were back in contention.

Then with six minutes remaining Chris Thomas’ exquisitely hit free kick levelled the score and and earned Town a very valuable point. Manager Deryn Brace said,

“Having been two nil down I’m pleased with a point. As everyone in football knows having levelled a 2-0 deficit it feels like a win. In the first half our game was only adequate but in the last twenty minutes we’ve been eager, contested everything and got the two goals. Whilst I'm pleased to have got something out of the game it’s just a little disappointing that we’ve had to go 2-0 down before showing what we can do”.

Never having been on the losing end of a result against Airbus Town looked to maintain a recent upturn in results and extend the unbeaten record against the Wingmakers. But despite a lackluster first half when Gio Feliciello, Matthew Owen and Carl Owen caused Town all kinds of problems the Richmond Park outfit had two great chances.

Hicks' persistence in winning the ball twice on the twenty three minute mark saw Mark Pritchard's final effort held by the keeper. Then a couple of minutes before the break Hicks was again unlucky not to break the deadlock when his powerful header, off Pierce's curling free kick, rocked the bar with the ball rebounding off the keeper's head to safety. But with the hosts forcing a series of corners Town were quite relieved to hear the half time whistle.

Just after the hour Neil Smothers was harshly adjudged to have handled and with the Wingmakers going ahead from the spot Town reacted positively. Four minutes later Brace sent on all three subs together but despite the changes that upped the momentum Town's back line gave Lloyd-Williams too much room and he looked to have put the game beyond Town when he netted Carl Owen's flick-on.

But persistence paid off as Town maintained the momentum. Keeper Kristian Rogers was forced to handle outside the box. With Pierce's set piece converted by Hicks there was a change in the balance of the game as the front man got on the score sheet for the third consecutive game.

With six minutes remaining Paul Fowler was pulled down on the edge of the box and having conceded one set piece an unsettled Airbus then conceded a second after referee Darren Adie had given Town a second bite of the cherry as Feliciello was booked for encroachment. With the points shared Town maintained their unbeaten record against the Wingmakers who conceded a 2-0 lead for the fourth time this season.

October 9
Carmarthen expect tough test at Airbus

CARMARTHEN Town have not lost at Airbus UK in five previous visits — but tomorrow's encounter could be their toughest yet at the Airfield.

While the Old Gold are slowly recapturing last season's form, Craig Harrison's side have made their best start for a number of years and have tasted defeat just twice in the league.

They are another of the North Wales clubs making a determined bid to land a place in next season's revamped set-up, so visiting manager Deryn Brace knows his side face a tough test.

"I was pleased with our 1-1 draw at Port Talbot in the League Cup as it keeps our little run going, and it's important we come back from Airbus with something to maintain confidence," he said. "We need to keep our mini revival on track, but this is a big test mentally, physically and quality-wise.

"There's no doubt Airbus are now a formidable outfit but they are among a cluster of clubs who are within two points of us. One win could send us leaping up the table.

"We rested a few players against Port Talbot and I'm hoping they will be refreshed as this will be our third match in six days.

"Three of our four wins at Airbus have been 1-0 and I would gladly accept that again. Performance is important but, in games like these, the result is what counts."

Evening Post

October 3
Wingmakers squad put to the test at Lex

EVEN though he will be without several regulars at Stansty Park, Airbus boss Craig Harrison believes strength in depth can prove crucial to his team’s victory hopes, writes Dave Jones.

Lex XI are no strangers to giant-killing having knocked Porthmadog out of last season’s competition and Harrison is certainly not under-estimating the Lawmen.

“I’ve been to watch them twice so I’m not taking them lightly by any means,” said the Airbus chief. “We certainly won’t see it as a case of just turning up and winning the game.”

The Wingmakers will be without striker Carl Owen (groin strain), midfielders Ashley Williams (calf) and Dan Desormeaux (hamstring), plus suspended defender Rhys Roberts and centre-back Matty Woodward and Jack Abraham, both unavailable.

That means the likes of strikers Paul McManus, Andy Mitchell and James McIntosh, as well as defender Gareth Sudlow getting a start.

“When you consider Paul McManus was scoring goals in the Football League (for Chester) 18 months ago, Andy Mitchell has played in the Football League and James McIntosh and Gareth Sudlow have many years of experience in the Welsh Premier, you are not talking about bringing in young players with no experience,” added Harrison.

“It shows the strength of our squad that it’s taken five or six injuries to get these players in the team, so I don’t see it as a weakened side at all.”

David Jones

October 2
Craig Harrison wants Airbus players to show their mean side

MANAGER Craig Harrison wants his Airbus UK Broughton players to toughen up and reflect his own sore loser attitude.

Airbus allowed a 2-0 lead to slip away in a 2-2 draw at Prestatyn Town and wants to avoid similar mistakes in Saturday’s Welsh Cup tie at Wrexham side Lex XI (2.30pm).

“We’ve had a meeting this week and I think we’ve been a little soft-centred,” said the former Middlesbrough man. “We need to put teams under pressure from the start.

“As a player, I was far from soft-centred, which may be one of the reasons I had to stop playing football (with a double compound fracture), when I went for a tackle I had no right getting.”

And the boss believes it is more to do with players’ attitude than levels of skill.

“I played with players a lot better than me but they didn’t have the heart, the determination or the will to win,” he added. “The lads will tell you that in training I’m an absolute nightmare because someone’s going to get kicked. And I’m not happy when we get beat. I’m so intense and that’s just five-a-side in training!

“I don’t want my team being soft-centred because I’m not that type of person. Speak to my girlfriend and my family and no-one will play even a board game with me because if I get beat, that’s it, I’ve spat my dummy out!”

Harrison will play his strongest team on Saturday at the Airfield (2.30pm) and is wary of the threat posed by the Welsh Alliance side.

“I’ve been to watch Lex twice. They are a decent team who try and pass the ball. They have a few lads in there with Welsh Premier experience so I won’t be saying to the lads that it’s a good chance to boost their confidence because it could be a banana skin.

“First and foremost, we’ve got to win the game. Whether that’s 1-0 or 7-0, I don’t really care.”

Carl Owen is still struggling with his groin, Jack Abrahams will be missing and Danny Desormeaux is still injured.

David Bergin

September 25
Disappointing start for Airbus UK Broughton

AIRBUS UK Broughton have endured their most disappointing week of the season so far, but boss Craig Harrison isn’t too worried.

The Wingmakers manager was left frustrated on Friday when the then bottom-of-the-table Welshpool caused the season’s first upset at the Airfield, going away with a 2-1 win.

Mark Lloyd-Williams was again on the mark, but his strike proved too little too late.

Airbus have made a great start to the season, proving a match for Llanelli, Rhyl and TNS in the opening weeks, which added to their disappointment.

“It was a poor performance on Friday for the first hour,” said Harrison. “In the last half-hour we did well but it’s too late when you’re 2-0 down. It’s too easy to play when you’re getting beat, you’ve got to go and play when it’s 0-0.”

Yet the former Middlesbrough full-back was magnanimous in defeat.

He said: “To be fair to Welshpool, they’ve come and done their homework and they’ve matched us all over the pitch. It would have been undeserved if they hadn’t taken anything from the game because they worked so hard. All credit to them

“Our lads didn’t seem up for it and no-one put their foot in.

“There may have been a bit of complacency – most people would probably look at it as complacency – but as much as anything, it was just bad play, which happens.”

And tomorrow’s opponents Prestatyn won’t make things any easier for the Wingmakers – they have only lost one of their last six games and that was to champions Rhyl. The match at Bastion Road kicks off at 7.30pm.

“They’ve started the season well so it will be a tough game”

“I think Prestatyn will approach the game very much like Welshpool did and get in our faces early doors.

“We know it’s going to be a tough game; it’s going to be a battle and our lads had better get used to it”

Harrison again rang the changes when his already-eliminated side went to Rhyl in their final Loosemore Challenge Cup match of the season, and slumped to a 4-0 defeat.

The cup was used primarily for Harrison to test his players on the verge of the first team, and one man stood out more than most.

“Paul McManus did really well last night,” said the boss. “He was one of the better players and he has been one of the better players in the cup games. Unfortunately, he just hasn’t had the chance, but he’s done himself no harm at all.”

And players must be aware that others are waiting in the wings if they don’t perform.

“We’ve got a big squad and plenty of lads that can come in,” added Harrison. “We’ve picked up a couple of injuries, but apart from that, we’ve got a strong squad and the lads should realise that if they’re not doing the business then they won’t play.”

Carl Owen, Danny Desormeaux and Andy Mitchell will all be absent for tomorrow’s match.

David Bergin

September 23
Win over Airbus puts Rhyl through

RHYL coasted into the last eight of the Loosemores League Cup last night with a one-sided 4-0 victory over Airbus UK Broughton at Belle Vue.

While neither club fielded a full-strength side it was the Lilywhites who dominated from the start to finish and but for the woodwork – which they hit four times – and some fine stops from Wingmakers keeper Phil Palethorpe, it would have been double figures.

New signing Phil Doran volleyed against the post for the hosts before the deadlock was ended on 22 minutes.

Gareth Owen's through pass released makeshift striker Mark Connolly who scored for the fifth successive game by confidently lifting the ball over the advancing Palethorpe.

The lead was doubled when Tyrone Kirk received the ball down the right, left one defender standing and then beat another as he cut into the box and foiled Palethorpe with a near post finish.

Martyn Naylor clattered the bar from 30 yards before on 44 minutes Owen's touch enabled Doran to knock in his debut goal for the Lilies.

Palethorpe produced a fantastic tip over after Kirk twisted, turned and let fly, but on 61 minutes the excellent Paul Smith threaded the ball through for Connolly who slipped the offside trap again and drilled home to make it six goals in five starts.

Naylor was desperately unlucky when his 15-yard effort struck both uprights and veteran substitutes Dave Cameron and Gary Powell missed gilt-edged chances.

Dave Jones

September 13
Aberystwyth 0-3 Airbus UK Broughton

CARL Owen led Aberystwyth a merry dance as the Seasiders’ early home woes continued. He scored one of his side’s three goals and was a constant threat as the Wingmakers stayed in touch with the leading pack.
Aber, with one point to show from three home outings, fell behind midway through the first half as Ryan Edwards drilled a low drive in from the right of the box.
Airbus continued to call the tune, with keeper Steven Cann twice denying Marc Lloyd Williams before half time, while after the break he made a good stop to foil Owen.
However, Owen did find a way through on 67 minutes when firing into the net after the home defence had failed to deal with a cross.
The Black and Greens, with striker Graham Evans still sidelined through injury, rarely suggested they could find a way back despite a couple of half chances as the visitors held a tight rein.
And it was the prolific Lloyd Williams who had the final word with a third goal two minutes into injury time after the hosts had struggled to clear from Giovanni Feliciello's free kick.
Wales on Sunday

September 3
Prolific striker Jiws does it again

PROLIFIC striker Marc Lloyd-Williams notched his fifth goal in four Welsh Premier League games as Airbus UK Broughton notched up a first win of the season against Haverfordwest yesterday.

The visitors left the Airfield empty-handed after veteran Lloyd Williams sparked a fine second half performance.

An uncharacteristic error from County goalkeeper Lee Idzi saw Airbus take the lead in the 35th minute when failed to hold a cross and left Carl Owen with the easiest of tasks.

County hit back early in the second period when Robbie Walters fired beyond keeper Kristian Rogers, but within minutes Airbus were rewarded for their enterprise.

Lloyd Williams turned in the area before beating Idzi from close range and then set up the clincher on 69 minutes when he threaded a pass through to Matthew Cook to slot home.

Mark Currie
September 3
Craig Harrison confident first Wingmakers win is coming

AIRBUS UK Broughton are yet to truly to take off this season but boss Craig Harrison has been buoyed by his team’s performances against the top-flight’s top three.

Having taken hard-earned points against Llanelli and then Rhyl, the Wingmakers travelled to The New Saints on Saturday but went down 2-1 on the artificial surface.

The predatory Marc Lloyd Williams scored his fourth goal in three games for the Wingmakers – a header from Matthew Cook’s cross – but it was not enough as the full-timers sealed a victory they just about deserved.

Harrison said: “That was probably the toughest game out of the three we have had so far. In the first half they could have been three or four up but our defending was terrific.

“In the second half it was backs to the wall stuff but their manager said in an interview on S4C that they were delighted to get away with the points because we could have nicked a point. Traditionally we have always done well against TNS but I think it will be tough for anyone to go there and win on that surface.

“The three teams we have played will be the ones to beat this season. Rhyl are very strong. I think whoever finishes above those three will be in Europe next season.”

Airbus’ search for their first victory of the campaign continues this Sunday when Haverfordwest County are the visitors to the Airfield (2.30pm).

The South West Walians arrive in Broughton on the back of a 2-1 home win over Carmarthen Town on Friday night and have won two of their opening three games.

Harrison knows County will provide stiff opposition but he is confident the Wingmakers can break their duck at the fourth attempt.

He said: “The performances of the lads have been fantastic. Obviously Marc Lloyd Williams, scoring four from our first three games, has played well but he will be the first to tell you that the lads have worked really hard to create the chances for him to score. They have provided him with the ammunition.

“It is always nice to get your first three points on the board so hopefully we will be able to do that on Sunday against Haverfordwest”.

Ben Coulbeck

Airbus crash as Saints march on

THE New Saints maintained their winning ways but conceded a first goal of the season as Airbus proved more than a match at Park Hall.

Victory keeps the Saints clear at the top, now the only side in the league with a 100 per cent record, but they failed to hit their earlier heights in an out-of-sorts second half showing.

The Oswestry-based hosts started well enough, Steve Abbott hitting the post in a scramble while the striker was also denied by keeper Kris Rogers.

And they went ahead on 20 minutes when, following a swift break upfield, Abbott netted the rebound after Rogers had saved from Matt Berkeley. The advantage was doubled on 33 when Jamie Wood’s header from 15 yards crept inside the post.

Berkeley should have added another before Airbus hit back when a Ryan Edwards cross took a deflection to leave ex-TNS striker Marc Lloyd Williams a simple headed chance.

Airbus threatened as the Saints toiled after the break; Matthew Cook firing wide while Lloyd-Williams glanced a header past the post from a Geo Feliciello long throw.

The hosts were content to hang on to what they had as they packed the midfield, but they could have gone further ahead late on. Sub Craig Williams sent a shot wide, before Ruscoe hit a post in added time and both Berkeley and John McKenna spurned the rebounds.

Wales on Sunday

August 29
Wot the papers say - Craig confident ahead of TNS clash

Airbus UK Broughton boss Craig Harrison is confident his side can negotiate a third successive tricky hurdle when they visit The New Saints this afternoon.

The Wingmakers have already shared the spoils in clashes with Rhyl and Llanelli and Harrison believes another solid performance will provide a springboard for future progress.

“The lads have been fantastic so far,” he said. “A look at the fixture list meant we had to hit the ground running this season and they knew what they had to do from day one.

“We have come through two of the three unbeaten and if we can maintain that record on Saturday, we will be in a good position to kick on from there.”

Daily Post

Harrison backs Rhyl to retain title

AFTER holding the champions to a 2-2 draw on Friday night Airbus UK Broughton manager Craig Harrison predicted Rhyl will retain their Welsh Premier League title this season.

Harrison’s new-look Wingmakers looked just as impressive against the Lilywhites as they did five days earlier in earning a 2-2 split at Llanelli.

The Broughton side will complete a trio of fixtures against the “big three” when they travel to The New Saints on Saturday, but Harrison believes Rhyl are best equipped to finish top of the tree again.

“I think Rhyl are a stronger team than Llanelli all in all and if they can keep their first choice eleven injury-free I think they will win the league again,” he said.

Harrison was delighted with his team’s display against the Lilies in a game where they would have taken all three points but for Lee Hunt’s 85th minute equaliser.

“I felt we were the better side in the first half while they shaded the second,” he added.

“We had a couple of chances at 2-1 and if we’d have taken them I think we’d have gone on to win it, but we knew Rhyl wouldn’t give up.”

Daily Post

Rhyl ready for tough Airbus clash

RHYL know they are in for a tough test when they travel to ambitious Airbus UK Broughton for their second game of the season this Friday (7.30pm).

The champions began their defence of the title in impressive fashion last Saturday with a 2-1 victory over Carmarthen Town at Belle Vue, but the Wingmakers will be walking on air after holding mighty Llanelli to a 2-2 draw at Stebonheath Park on Sunday.

Airbus led 2-0 in that game through a brace from Welsh Premier record scorer Marc Lloyd Williams only for Andy Legg’s side to pinch two late goals.

Craig Harrison has added considerable strength to his squad in the summer in a bid to ensure qualification for next season’s Super 12, and while the Broughton outfit do not have the best of records against Rhyl they might fancy their chances of an upset on Friday.

The clubs have met on 10 occasions in the Welsh Premier and Rhyl lead by eight wins to one with one draw, Airbus’ only success in the fixture coming in their first season in the league in 2004/05.

Daily Post

July 30
Airbus boss see's his pre-season work pay dividends

CRAIG Harrison has not had time to rest this summer but his hard work has certainly paid off during Airbus UK Broughton’s pre-season campaign.

“It’s been more hectic than what the season was,” said the Wingmakers’ boss. “We tried to get everything sorted out early doors and it’s paid dividends really.”

Harrison has brought in a number of new faces and is delighted with the strength of his 2009-10 squad.

“Everything’s paid off with not having a rush getting players in, and missing out on players, and I’ve got everyone I want. Last year, we had about 14 or 15 players but after that, we were a bit light on the ground.

“Some of the lads who were regulars last year may not even get on the bench this year, which is a challenge for them. We’ve got good strength in depth everywhere.

“It’s always the hardest bit about being a manager, telling a player they won’t play, but it’s the type of headache you want to have.”

And with the top 12 teams next season qualifying for the new-look Welsh Premier League in 2010-11, Harrison is seeking an improvement on last year’s 12th-place finish.

“I’d be disappointed if we finished outside the top-10. I think that would be a realistic target to give myself and the players, then we’re guaranteed to be in the super 12,” said Harrison.

Goals and a lack of experience from a youthful Airbus were the team’s main shortcomings last term and Harrison acted quickly to remedy the situation with the signing of the league’s all-time top scorer Marc Lloyd-Williams, among others.

“People have questioned Marc about his age, but he’s still sharp in and around the box and a great finisher,” added Harrison.

“We’ve also brought in Carl Owen who, for me, if he’s not the best then he’s definitely one of the best strikers in the league.”

“I can’t believe he didn’t start more games at Rhyl last season.

“Andy Mitchell and Paul McManus have Football League experience, so we’re going to have a very strong squad this season.”

Harrison completed half of his A-licence coaching badge over the summer, and will finish the course in June 2010. After that, the former Middlesbrough man will take his Pro Licence, which is the highest level of qualification at Uefa.

Flintshire Chronicle

July 2
Airbus to host Everton at the Airfield

EVERTON FC are to face Airbus UK Broughton FC in a friendly at the Airfield on Saturday, July 18 (3pm kick-off). 

Airbus officials are hoping for a large turnout in Broughton to celebrate the occasion.

Airbus Broughton FC Chairman and Lifelong Everton fan and Paul McKinlay said: "We are delighted to be hosting an English Premiership club at The Airfield and would like to thank David Moyes and the staff at Everton for their help in arranging the game.

"We have made great progress over the past few months in developing the club, in particular the playing surface. We now have a facility that can benefit Flintshire and Welsh football; the improvements now mean we can host high profile teams and fixtures at The Airfield."

"This game is a key part of our preparation for the new season and with the signings the manager has secured, we are all looking forward with some excitement to the year ahead!" added the Wingmakers' Chairman.

"We hope to have a good crowd, and that people enjoy their day and come back to watch Airbus through a successful season in the Welsh Premier League."

Manager Craig Harrison, a former Middlesborough and Crystal Palace defender, added: "This will be a great test for our lads, most of whom have played to a high standard. Playing against such players, is second only to playing at that level yourself. We are all thoroughly looking forward to the fixture."

June 18
Jiw's can fire us into super 12

AIRBUS UK Broughton boss Craig Harrison believes sensational new signing Marc Lloyd Williams is the man to fire the club into the Welsh Premier League ‘Super 12’.

The Wingmakers completed the biggest capture in their history when legendary striker Lloyd Williams put pen to paper on a deal on Saturday morning.

The 36-year-old is the league’s all-time leading scorer with 302 goals in 387 starts and his arrival at the Airfield came hours before a massive shake-up of the top flight was announced.

The Welsh Premier will be slashed from 18 clubs to 12 at the end of next season with qualification for the new-look league going to the 10 highest-placed clubs that have been awarded the FAW Club Licence.

Airbus’ off-the-field team are working hard to ensure the Broughton outfit gain the licence in time for the changes. And now Harrison believes he has found the player to help the Wingmakers break into the top 10 for the first time.

“It is an absolutely great signing for the club,” said Harrison, who has also made quality additions in Porthmadog defender Rhys Roberts, striker Carl Owen from Rhyl and midfielders Jack Abraham and Simon Law from Flint Town United and Upton AA respectively.

“Marc’s record speaks for itself. He’s played in the league for a number of years and scored hundreds of goals. He would be a massive asset to any team.

“You can never predict what is going to happen in football, but history tends to suggest he’s got every chance of scoring 20 goals for us next season. If he can do that, he could be the difference for us and I believe we’d have every chance of finishing in the top eight.”

Lloyd Williams was a free agent after leaving Porthmadog and was courted by a host of clubs, not least ambitious Prestatyn Town, who made a late offer for his services.

“I am delighted he has decided to join our club,” said Harrison, whose delight will be shared by his defenders given that Lloyd Williams, nicknamed ‘Jiws’, has scored 15 goals in just 10 league games against Airbus.

“Prestatyn are a fantastic club and, like us, they are trying to sign the best players out there who are available. So it’s a real coup for us.”

A maximum of eight clubs will be relegated from the Welsh Premier League at the end of next season as two places will be reserved for the clubs who come up through the feeder leagues. Only six clubs are likely to go down, however, as no promotion applicant from the Cymru Alliance and the Welsh League Division One are expected to gain the FAW Club Licence before the start of the 2010-11 campaign.

The Welsh Premier League will then be reduced to 11 clubs in 2011 and 10 in 2012.

Harrison, meanwhile, has further reason to cheer. Highly-rated midfielder Ashley Williams, who was on trial with Wrexham earlier this year, has committed his future to the club while striker Paul Hallows has returned to light training. Hallows suffered a stroke in March.

Flintshire Chronicle


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