THIS weekend we are set to face Barry Town United in the Welsh Blood Service League Cup national final at Newtown.

For a number of months, we had asked for dates/provisional dates for the northern final and a potential national final for planning purposes from a club perspective, but also to enable players and staff to plan ahead and arrange some well deserved downtime after a long season.

Unfortunately, despite repeated requests over a number of weeks going back to early February and prior to our semi-final win over Guilsfield on 18th March, Cymru Leagues were unable to provide us with the information.

The players, all of whom are part-time with work and family commitments, were keen to unwind and ensure they could organise their holidays in a timely manner.

The players consulted throughout with club officials over dates that they could go away, and with no decision forthcoming from the competition organisers we gave them our blessing to go away over the weekend of 29th/30th April. This originally being two full weeks post the end of season dates we had been given, and 17 days past the original last league game of the season vs Llandudno.

In addition the club will also be hosting a Junior Football tournament at the 4 Crosses Construction Arena over that weekend and with many of our young fans taking part in the competition would not be able to be present for the final.

An announcement was finally made on Friday, 14th April – a day before our final rescheduled league game of the season and only two weeks before a potential national final.

Therefore, due to significant absences, we have no option but to field our Development side for the national final and will be fully behind our young team.

We are disappointed that it has come to this – disappointed for our fans, opponents Barry Town, the FAW, the Welsh Blood Service as the Cup partners and hosts Newtown but we have been left with no other option in this difficult situation.