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Merthyr Tydfil

The Martyrs

Penydarren Park, Merthyr Tydfil,
Mid Glamorgan, CF47 8RF
01685 384102/371395
01685 382882
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Club Notes
It would be fair to say that Merthyr Tydfil Football Club have had their fair share of disappointments from the play-off system over recent seasons. Indeed, for two years in succession the Martyrs have failed to reach the Conference set-up at the play-off stage but can only hope that lady luck will be a little kinder to them in 2006.
The arrival of new Team Manager Tim Harris has given the club a lift following the departure of John Relish at the end of last season and Harris, who has been in charge at Cinderford Town, Newport County and Forest Green Rovers over recent years has partially re-built the playing squad following a number of high profile departures and a cut in the playing budget.
Formed as Merthyr Town back in 1909, the club and town enjoyed Football League status between 1920 and 1930 before the stark depression that hit the South Wales area put paid not to just that status but also the club.
However, when Merthyr Tydfil was formed after the Second World War they embarked upon a 10-year reign as the premier Non-League side in England and Wales.
Consecutive Southern League Championships followed along with two Welsh FA Cup successes over Football League neighbours Cardiff City and Swansea Town as they were then.
However, Merthyr were overlooked by the closed shop which existed within the Football League at the time, in favour of clubs with inferior playing records and eventually those disappointments came home to roost.
Long periods of struggle followed with rare and spasmodic seasons of success. That was until the mid 1980’s when the arrival of team Manager Lyn Jones revitalised the club’s fortunes.
Successive Southern League titles in 1988 and 1989 along with a Welsh FA Cup win over 3rd Division Newport County saw Merthyr enjoy six years of Conference football but not before a romantic journey into European football that caught the imagination of the nation.
Italian giants Atalanta were humbled 2-1 in the European Cup Winners Cup at Penydarren Park on a balmy night in September 1987 although defeat in the tie was to follow after a 2-0 2nd leg defeat in Bergamo.
A best ever Conference finish of 4th was achieved in 1992 but that proved to be a high point which the club were never to emulate and relegation followed three years later.
Under Colin Addison Merthyr almost returned to the Conference at the first attempt, eventually finishing runners-up to Forest Green Rovers and then went into free-fall off the field as financial hardship threatened the existence of the club.
Current owner Wyn Holloway proved to be the clubs saviour after buying it out of administration in 1997 but stability off the pitch failed to bring success on it.
That was until the arrival of Messrs. Andy Beattie and John Relish who, despite a disappointing relegation year in 2002 took the club to a Southern League Western Division league title and final placing of 14th and 3rd in their three years in charge. With plans for an ambitious new stadium currently in the planning stage at the National Assembly for Wales Merthyr are now hoping to build upon last season in a bid to regain their coveted Conference status and in former Cheltenham Town goalkeeper Tim Harris Merthyr firmly believe they have the man for the job.
Club Connections:
Mark Benbow, Dean Craven, Andy Mainwaring
Matchtype filter:
Venue Matches W D L Goals + / -
Home 3 1 1 1 6 - 5 +1
Away 3 0 1 2 3 - 5 -2
Neutral 0 0 0 0 0 - 0 +0
Total 6 1 2 3 9 - 10 -1

Date Comp. Venue Score Stadium Crowd
04.04.1995 National Conference Home 2 - 0 Victoria Ground 1230
06.09.1994 National Conference Away 1 - 2 Penydarren Park 557
02.05.1994 National Conference Away 1 - 2 Penydarren Park 514
27.11.1993 National Conference Home 3 - 3 Victoria Ground 914
16.02.1993 National Conference Away 1 - 1 Penydarren Park 546
28.11.1992 National Conference Home 1 - 2 Victoria Ground 1306