PICTURE by Wynne Evans.
WITH the Anglesey League heading into the final year of its current form, a number of quality players have signed up ahead of what should be a cracking campaign in 2019/20.
Here I pick out just 15 of the best transfers made by the clubs in the division so far …
Craig Moore (Bryngwran Bulls to Hotspur Reserves)
Without a doubt one of the signings of the summer. Lethal forward Moore bagged 61 goals for Anglesey League champions Bryngwran Bulls during 2018/19 and just when AL defenders thought they’d catch a break when The Bulls were subsequently promoted to the Gwynedd League – it turns out they won’t be as he will be back in the AL with Hotspur Reserves for 19/20.
His record over the years for the likes of The Bulls and Trearddur Bay speaks for itself and his level of having played in higher divisions certainly shows in the Anglesey League.
If he stays fully fit, then there’s no reason why he won’t be able to break the 50-goal barrier once more this season with the host of talent around him at Hotspur’s second team.
Matthew Roberts (Bro Goronwy to Llandegfan)
This one will have gone under the radar for most but (speaking as the man who signed him but in no terms in a biased way), Roberts will undoubtedly be a welcome addition to Llandegfan’s defence this season.
Having been Player of the Season in the club’s re-establishment season in 2017/18, the tough-tackling centre back moved to Gwynedd League side Bro Goronwy for the following season and had established a place in the first team at Cae Nerys at the beginning of the season.
He’s now back at Llandeg for 19/20 and has impressed in pre-season with his tireless work at the back and his willingness to put his body on the line to stop those goals going in.
Harry Jones (Menai Tigers to Arriva Bangor)
Another superb signing for the Anglesey League which demonstrates the pulling power the clubs in the division now have. Jones is a solid defender who played a big role in Menai Tigers’ league and cup winning successes of 2018/19.
His versatility means he can play anywhere across the back-line and having previously played under Kevin Jones at Arriva in the Sunday League days, he’ll know just how to fit in.
Having played at a higher level for several years now, he should prove to be one of the best defenders in the league this season.
Sean O’Toole (Holyhead Town to Hotspur Reserves)
Another quality addition to The Reserves by new manager Tom Scott and one who will bring a lot of experience to the predominantly youthful squad they have there.
O’Toole is a player who can be deployed in a number of different positions and brings with him a wealth of higher league experience, having played for the likes of Trearddur Bay.
Casey Boylan (Bodedern to Valley)
Another higher-league standard player who has made the switch from Bodedern Athletic back to former club Valley.
Boylan has spent the last four seasons playing for the Welsh Alliance Once side under Ricky Williams and proved to be a highly useful midfielder, who helped the Green and White’s on to two promotions, two cups and a league title during his time there.
His hunger and desire to win will be a great asset to a Valley side who will be looking to climb back up the table this season after a somewhat quiet campaign during 2018/19.
Wisdom Janes (Menai Tigers to Arriva Bangor)
A centre back/central midfielder who was part of the Mynydd Tigers squad who won the Anglesey League in 2017/18.
Janes is a strong player on the ball and reads the game well too. He spent last season with Gwynedd League champions Menai Tigers and will now be looking to help The Busmen cause and upset in the Anglesey League this season.
Terry Watkinson (Arriva Bangor to Mountain Rangers)
Hard-working central midfielder who played for Llanfairpwll and then Arriva Bangor last season. Watkinson (Known as Terry Wax) is a vastly experienced player, who has earned himself a long list of honours during his playing career.
He first started out at Llangoed before joining Caernarfon Borough, where he won the NWCFA Junior Cup. During a four-year spell with Llanllyfni, he won the Caernarfon & District League, Saflue Cup, and Gwynedd League title and played for the club in the Welsh Alliance.
A season followed at Talysarn Celts as manager alongside Adrian Griffiths before moving to Bontnewydd in 2014/15 where he helped the club to the Runners-Up spot in the Gwynedd League.
He will be a key player in this Rangers side who will be gunning for the Anglesey League title this season.
Carwyn Thompson (Llanfairpwll to Llandegfan)
At 40 years old, Thompson would be forgiven if he was to slow down his playing style, but that is definitely not the case for this particular central midfielder.
His tireless efforts in the heart of Llanfairpwll’s midfield did not go unnoticed last season as he helped the younger heads around him pick up some valuable points in the league.
Now at Llandegfan, he will be looking to help inspire another group of youngsters who are looking to turn their fortunes around in 2018/19. His never say die attitude will certainly come in handy for this Llandeg side, who desperately need a leader in their team.
Ben Hulse (Arriva Bangor to Llanfairpwll)
Llanfair managers Vinny Walker and Spud Thomas have wasted no time in bringing in one of, in my opinion, the best wingers in the league to Y Gors.
On his day, Hulse has the ability to tear defences apart, both by creating and scoring goals. His pace combined with his desire to win the ball make him a dangerous player for defences to try and deal with.
Having spent the last few seasons at Arriva Bangor, he will now be looking forward to his new challenge at Llanfair, where he should become a starting eleven player.
Lewis Connor (Llanerchymedd to Cemaes Bay)
A massive signing for The Bay as they look to storm their way to the Anglesey League title this season.
Defender Connor, who can play both as a left back and a centre back, had become a huge part of Llanerchymedd’s progress as a club, even becoming their skipper and showed his true potential with some fine performances.
At 6ft 6′, he’s great in the air and has also added goals to his game recently, bagging double figures at Llan last season.
Now, still only 25 years old, Connor has returned to former club Cemaes alongside a number of other former players to help newly-appointed manager Darren Thomas (who is also returning!) with the aim of helping the club to league and cup glory.
Ian Pleming (Bontnewydd to Mountain Rangers)
Another player who will guarantee a truck-load of goals if his previous record is anything to go by. “Chops” is a strong and skilful forward who has played at all levels – including the Welsh Premier League, where he played for Caernarfon Town in 2003/04.
In 2007/08, Pleming was crowned top scorer at Gwynedd League side Bethel FC, before joining Caernarfon Borough of the Caernarfon and District League, and Mountain Rangers in 2009/10.
He later joined Glantraeth, where in his first season they finished as runners-up in the Gwynedd League and won the North Wales Coast Intermediate Cup, Gwynedd League Cup, Bob Owen Memorial Shield and the Gwynedd Shield with Pleming scoring a hat-trick and being awarded the man of the match award in the final v Llanfairfechan.
He then returned to Caernarfon Town (and then Glantraeth again) before a cruciate ligament injury to his knee and a torn hamstring kept him out of the game for awhile. He then resumed his playing career with Nantlle Vale and Gwlachmai before becoming player-manager at Talysarn Celts in 2015/16 before heading to Bontnewydd, where he finished as top scorer last season with 16 goals.
Tudur Williams (Llanerchymedd to Valley)
Another quality addition to Dan Jones’ Valley side. Williams is a midfielder who really improved as a player during his time at Llanerchymedd and became a key player for the club.
He should slot in nicely into the Valley midfield – although competition for places at the club will be intense with the likes of Paul Williams, Andrew Bailey and fellow new boy Casey Boylan all vying for a place in the starting eleven.
Can Williams rubber-stamp a place in the line-up and help take this side back to where it belongs?
Sion Guto (Llanystumdwy to Llanfairpwll)
An exciting signing for Llanfair and one who really stood out for Llanystumdwy in the Gwynedd League last season.
Forward Guto broke a club record for the most goals in one game, when he bagged SEVEN in a 15-2 win over Bontnewydd – surpassing the previous record of six held by prolific goalscorer Sion Parry, who is now at Porthmadog.
The striker has shown plenty of potential and alongside other talented youngsters at Llanfair, he should fit in very well into Vinny Walker and Spud Thomas’ system this season.