Druids impress in Europa League first leg!
Cefn Druids 1-1 FK Trakai
A late strike from Donatas Kazlauskas denied Cefn Druids a first leg victory in their UEFA Europa League Preliminary Round clash with FK Trakai at Park Hall.
Druids more than matched the Lithuanian side in the first half, and could have gone ahead early after Arek Piskorski picked up a rebounding corner six yards out, only to fire over.
Trakai looked dangerous on the counter attack but some resolute defending at times from the Ancients’ back line kept the visitors' chances to a premium. Kazlauskas had the best chance of the half, peeling off nicely to create space on the edge of the Druids area, but his low shot was tame and easily collected by Michael Jones.
Three minutes after the restart Druids were in dreamland, new signing Jordan Evans crossing for Davies who opened his body up to sidefoot an effort goalwards. Trakai stopper Tomas Švedkauskas got a hand to it, but couldn't prevent it from going in.
Ryan Kershaw fired a 30 yard free-kick just over as Druids went in search of a second. Švedkauskas kept Trakai in the game with a fantastic save to deny Davies, whose curling effort seemed destined for the net.
The visitors greater match fitness levels began to show with time winding down, and Kazlauskas looked to have levelled with five to play, receiving the ball from Kabobola and making space in the Druids box to fire off a shot which beat Jones. Nathan Peate though cleared off the line to preserve the lead.
That only lasted a minute though, as Kazlauskas eventually got his goal, firing in off the post to send the teams into next week's second leg level.
After the match Huw Griffiths said: "They've been magnificent and punched well above their weight. But to concede in the way we did, they've got to be disappointed."It's a game we could have won it. The idea was to try and win the the game. We had a right go at them."I'm delighted and chuffed for the boys and disappointed at the same time."
C. Jaeger (AUT)
C. Rigler (AUT)
R. Riedel (AUT)
W. Altmann (AUT)
Attendance : 742