WELSH PREMIER FOOTBALL

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Eifion Williams
Eifion Williams - a goal per game in the League of Wales.

GOALS per game, Eifion Williams is the most prolific striker the Welsh Premier has ever seen.
The Bangor born hitman started his career at Caernarfon Town in 1995/6 and scored 29 goals from 34 league appearances. He followed up the following season with another 34 from 37 league starts before catching the eye of full-timers Barry Town.
In two campaigns at Jenner Park he notched 68 goals from 59 appearances, making a grand total of 131 league goals from 130 appearances, a goal a game!
While at The Oval he scored four goals in a league game twice, home and away against Rhyl.
Eifion went one better at Jenner Park. When he scored five against Total Network Solutions in September 1997 in a 10-0 win, it signalled the Llansantffraid club's biggest ever league defeat and brought about the immediate resignation of Welsh Cup winning manager Graham Breeze.
Williams' goal-scoring feats soon attracted the interest of a number of English league clubs, notably Nottingham Forest and Portsmouth, where he had a successful trial.
But as the Fratton Park outfit were then in the hands of the receivers, a deal was never struck.
Instead, he went to Torquay United for a reputed £70,000
Twenty minutes into his Football League debut, the portents did not look good after being introduced to the Plainmoor faithful as "Iffion". The departure of the injured O'Neill Donaldson saw the former Barry Town goal-machine joined by fellow debutant Jean-Pierre Simb in the home attack.
Senegal-born Simb does not speak a word of English but this odd couple hit it off to such an extent that Williams had carved his place in Torquay history within an hour. The unorthodox Simb created two goals as Williams became only the second Gulls player to score a hat-trick on his debut.
He went on to score 24 goals at Plainmoor in 84 appearances, plus 23 as sub.
A £30,000 move to Hartlepool United in March 2002 saw him add another 56 goals in 239 appearances before his release at the end of 2006/7 and a free transfer to Wrexham.
A call-up by Mark Hughes for Wales was thwarted by injury, but he remains one of the most successful exports from the Welsh domestic league and, who knows, he may yet return to add to his amazing record.

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23 July 2017

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