Nathaniel MG

Welsh League Cup

Cardiff Met 0


A SECOND-half strike from Jamie Mullan was enough to give The New Saints a record-breaking fourth straight Nathaniel MG Welsh League Cup win.

Mullan, outstanding throughout for TNS, proved to be the difference in a clash largely dominated by the holders from Oswestry and gave Scott Ruscoe his first piece of silverware as manager.

Saints went close to breaking the deadlock after three minutes when Connell Rawlinson's towering back-post header was cleared off the line.

TNS were dominant and should have been ahead in the eighth minute as Mullan – who signed a new deal last week – drove the ball across goal and Alex Darlington failed to connect.

Saints continued to pile on the pressure after a series of corners and Aeron Edwards was next to miss the target as he fired over from 16 yards.

Cardiff were forced into an early change as Jordan Lam was replaced by Harry Owen before the half-hour through injury.

But despite all their pressure, Saints needed the flag to come to their rescue when Dan Spencer's cool left-footed finish past Paul Harrison was chalked off for offside on 34 minutes.

TNS continued to find success through Ryan Brobbel and Mullan down both flanks but couldn't make it count as they headed into break goalless.

Edwards was next to miss from close range when he couldn't adjust his body to Simon Spender's cross on 54 minutes and fired over.

But the domination paid off as Saints' danger man Mullan broke the deadlock on 64 minutes.

Alex Darlington held the ball up and fed Mullan, who chose to smash it home rather than square it to give Saints a deserved lead.

That lead could have been doubled following great play from Brobbel, but Darlington could only smash his volley against the post on 72 minutes.

Darlington made way on 78 minutes for debutant Irish striker Dean Ebbe, who signed from Bluebell United just 24 hours before kick-off.

With two minutes left, Mullan had the chance to repeat his effort but this time he fired wide from four yards out as Saints entered the final few nervy minutes – but the silverware was theirs.

TNS: Harrison, Spender, Rawlinson, Hudson, Marriott, Routledge, Holland, Edwards, Brobbel, Mullan, Darlington (Ebbe 78)

Not used: Jones, Saunders, Parry, Kauber, Clark, Pryce