Jonathan Hood scored the decisive goal as Barry Town United saw off the challenge of Carmarthen Town in a scrappy affair at Jenner Park on Friday evening to go Phase Two unbeaten.
In a game of few chances, Hood scored the vital goal as Gavin Chesterfield’s side ended their second-half of the season unbeaten – winning eight and drawing twice.
Carmarthen Town, in contrast, offered little in response, although Kieran Thomas’ ferocious free-kick in the first-half did smash off the underside of the crossbar.
Barry will now have all eyes on their monumental European playoff semi-final, which will be played on the 12th May.
After securing a playoff berth, the hosts started the better of the two sides. And it was no surprise to see the tenacious Chris Hugh causing them problems early on as he drove inside and struck his shot with venom, but credit where its due, Lee Idzi did well to get down and deal with the effort in a bright start for the hosts.
Just moments later, there was another chance for the Linnets as he peeled away from his man and his strike when narrowly wide of Idzi’s post.
Suddenly, though, a silly challenge from Curtis Watkins gave the Old Golds an opportunity and Neil Smothers men almost took the lead as Kieran Thomas’ ferocious drive from just outside of the area slammed up against the crossbar after a fine counter-attack from the visitors.
It was a half which failed to really get going and for most parts, the visitors were comfortable and playing some really neat stuff, with Luke Bowen’s movement off the ball causing Luke Cooper and Curtis Watkins problems at the back.
After a quiet start to the second-half, Barry eventually took the lead courtesy of good work down the right-hand side as the ball found its way to Drew Fahiya who sliced his header, but luckily for the hosts, Hood was on hand to slam home his fifth of the season as his powerful shot was fired home past Idzi in the Old Golds goal.
Carmarthen battled to the death and showed great character, especially taking into account they’re already relegated but this night belonged to Barry ahead of their opportunity to play in the Europa League this season as they finished Phase Two unbeaten in what has been a scintillating year for Chesterfield’s troops.
Man of the match: (Jonathan Hood)
In a quiet game, there wasn’t any standout players as such but Jonathan Hood was in the right place at the right time to hand Barry all three points in the final game of the season – he will be key in the play-off semi-final come the 12th May after bagging his fifth goal of the season against Carmarthen Town.
Other mentions go to Macauley Southam, who was a constant threat down the right-hand side as he helped to start off the goal which separated the two sides.
Barry Town United: Mike Lewis, Macauley Southam-Hales, Luke Cooper, Curtis Watkins, Chris Hugh, James Saddler, Troy Greening, Jordan Cotterill, Jonathan Hood, Drew Fahiya, Kayne McLaggon
Substitutes: Paul Morgan, James Demetriou, Louis Gerrard, Lewis Cosslett, Joe Massaro, Michael George, Luke Davidson
Carmarthen Town: Lee Idzi, Dave Vincent, Lee Surman, Craig Hanford, Clayton Green, Ceri Morgan, Jordan Knott, Kieran Lewis, Aidan O’Kelly, Liam Thomas, Luke Bowen
Substitutes: Neil Smothers, Danny Thomas, Daniel Sheehan, Ryan Foschi
(Featured image: Rhys Skinner)