Rittenberg at the Double for Citizens
Bangor City get back to winning ways in hard-earned win at Newtown
Striker Dean Rittenberg scores twice as The Citizens ended a run of three straight defeats with a welcome three points at Latham Park.
With Paul Connolly, Danny Gosset and Assistant Manager Gary Taylor-Fletcher all ruled out through injury, City made several changes to the starting line-up. Matthew Hall continued in goal and seventeen-years old Guto Williams was handed a full WPL debut at centre back with Tom Kennedy moving into central midfield in place of Damien Allen. George Harry took up a berth on the right flank and right back Danny Holmes was made captain for the day.
On a bright and occasionally sunny afternoon at Latham Park, The Citizens suffered an early setback as Danny Holmes was left feeling the after effects of Kenton’s challenge and the first reshuffle of the afternoon occurred after just 11 minutes’ play. Damien Allen replaced the unfortunate Holmes as Kennedy moved back into a more customary defensive role.
Luke Wall had the first clear opportunity to open the score but Jones saved well (9’) before former Blue Jamie Reed found himself in space on the right hand side of the Bangor penalty area but ‘keeper Matthew Hall saved well to deny the hosts (15’).
Steven Hewitt let fly with a wayward long-range effort before Rittenberg headed wide from George Harry’s right wing cross (28’). Five minutes before the interval and Newtown threatened with a succession of corners with Craig Williams missing the target (41’).
Dean Rittenberg opened the scoring on the stroke of half time as he volleyed home from close range after good work by Luke Wall and Steven Hewitt on the left flank and City went into the interval a goal to the good.
Within ten minutes of the restart and City were forced into a second change as youngster Guto Williams twisted a knee on the 3G surface. Sion Edwards took up a central midfield role with Damien Allen now a makeshift right back.
Just after the hour mark, Brayden Shaw let rip from twenty-plus yards but the shot flew just over the Newtown bar. Robins keeper Jones received the match’s first caution (67’) for dissent before Luke Boundford replaced Nick Rushton for the hosts (71’). The change seemed to pay dividends as from a set-piece delivery Jamie Reed was able to finish with a neat back heel amidst confusion in the Citizens penalty area (73’).
City were undeterred and continued to search for the all-important second goal and with fifteen minutes remaining centre back Anthony Miley saw a shot fly agonisingly wide as he found himself with space at the far post from a corner kick. Luke Wall then went close (80’) before City went decisively ahead.
Goalkeeper Jones dallied with a back pass in the right hand corner and Dean Rittenberg was quick to anticipate the guardian’s hesitancy as he attempted to dribble the ball clear. A swift touch from the former Blackburn Rovers prospect left Jones stranded as the ball rolled over the line ahead of the back-pedalling Newtown defence (82’).
Rittenberg duly made way for James Demetriou for City’s third and final substitution (83’) before Bangor suffered their third misfortune of the afternoon. The lively George Harry went down in a heap following a challenge near the halfway line and after a few minutes delay the former Wrexham youngster was stretchered off.
City were left to defend their lead with only ten-men on the field and despite four extra minutes of added time, held on to earn a vital three points and reverse their recent fortunes.