Match Preview: St Austell vs. Cardiff City U23
Following Sunday’s victory against Truro City, Cardiff City’s U23 squad continue their four-game pre-season tour of Cornwall when they face St Austell on Tuesday evening.
A victory at Poltair Park will result in two wins on the bounce for Jarred Harvey’s U23 side. Tickets are available to purchase on the gate with kick-off commencing at 7.30pm. Adults are priced at £6, concessions at £3 and U16’s at £1.
Know Your Opponent
The Lilywhites currently compete in the South West Peninsula League Premier Division, which was founded in 2007. Last campaign, St Austell finished in a respectable sixth place out of 20 teams competing in total. Despite having a rich history after being founded in 1890, the club have only ever had two grounds; Rocky Park and Poltair Park.
Currently managed by Damon Mulready, St Austell tallied at total of 66 points in the league last season – one ahead of Launceston in seventh position. With an impressive 103 goals counted in total, they were also the fifth highest scorers in the competition.
The Cornish club remarkably achieved a run of 24 consecutive victories (league and cup) when they last won a league title (2014/15). This also resulted in domestic success after defeating Godolphin Atlantic in the final of the Cornwall Senior Cup, the same year.
Summer so far
St Austell have played one pre-season match this summer. A 2-2 draw against St Blazey AFC, on Friday 13th July, means that they also go into today’s match looking to remain unbeaten.
After tonight’s meeting, the Lilywhites will face a further four more friendlies before entering their new season.This includes trips to Penzance and Liskeard before hosting Porthleven and travelling again to play Mousehole.
Their competitive campaign will kick-off on Wednesday 8th August when they host Plymouth Argyle Reserves; who finished eighth in the table the previous season.
Last Time Out
Exactly 362 days ago, City’s U23 side lined up to face St Austell for a pre-season clash on Thursday, 20th July 2017. The spoils were shared in a dramatic 2-2 draw at Poltair Park. After a direct start from the visitors, Cardiff City took the lead through Wales U21 international Mark Harris. However, their lead would only last ten minutes when defender Will Tinsley slotted home at close range.
Former full-back Declan John, now at Rangers, restored the away side’s lead before the hour mark after being set up superbly by Cameron Coxe. The hosts fought back again though as they levelled the scores through centre-half Tom Chambers with ten minutes remaining.
This friendly encounter provided a competitive challenge for the players – a factor in which Harvey wishes to emulate on this current tour. Speaking after a 2-0 win against Truro City on Sunday, the U23 coach said, “We are trying our best to give our players exposure ahead of the new season. It’s absolutely vital that they get these minutes under their belts. “There are three more fixtures for us to play and we’re looking forward to those tests.”