Danny Williams, the Bluebirds’ striker on loan at Merthyr Town, made an excellent debut for his new team in a goalless draw against Beaconsfield Town at the MetCoaches Stadium.
The 21-year-old led the attack with energy and intelligence, linking well with Ian Traylor in the BetVictor Southern League match.
Former Wales Colleges captain, who joined Cardiff City from Haverfordwest County, sparked an outstanding counter-attack just before half-time against Beaconsfield when he intercepted in midfield and went past two defenders.
He played a perfectly weighted pass for Traylor, who smashed his shot across goal and just wide.
Williams had combined well with Lewis Binns earlier in the first half. Binns won possession with a strong challenge and Williams neatly played Owain Jones through, but the shot hit the side netting.
Merthyr captain Adam Davies delivered an accurate cross into the Beaconsfield penalty area where Williams teed up Elliot Richards, whose shot hit the underside of the bar and bounced down onto the goalie.
Richards also went close just after the hour mark, beating goalkeeper Myles Bowman only to see his effort hit a post.
It was a cold and windy day in Merthyr Tydfil and the home team could only name two substitutes, Corey Jenkins and Camden Duncan.
Bowman saved spectacularly from a Jarrad Wright header, while Jamie Veale, a former Cardiff City youth player, almost caught the ‘keeper off his line from a free-kick on halfway. His effort narrowly missed went over with Bowman beaten.
Merthyr appealed for a goal in the last minutes when a Davies shot was cleared off the line, but referee Jack Clench waved aside the claims.
The Martyrs played flowing football in difficult conditions at times and defended solidly.
Beaconsfield hit a post, but found chances few and far between.
The ‘keeper was almost caught out when a long, high pass played by Merthyr was caught in the wind and he back peddled furiously before slapping the ball away.
Bowmen realised a successful catch would see him fall across his line and when the ball ran loose substitute Duncan darted in, but defender James Taylor lunged in and put the ball out of play.
The next test for Merthyr Town is Saturday’s fixture at Salisbury FC where former Crystal Palace, Leicester City and Millwall player Steve Claridge is manager.
Merthyr Town: Alex Harris, Adam Davies (capt), Lewis Binns, Daniel Summerfield, Jarrad Wright, Ismail Yakubu, Owain Jones, Jamie Veale, Danny Williams (Corey Jenkins 80), Eliot Richards, Ian Traylor (Camden Duncan 79). Subs not used: None
Beaconsfield Town: Myles Bowman, Callum Webb, Mayo Balogun, James Taylor, Jordan Ajanlekoko (capt), Nathan Webb, Aaron Minhas, Stefan Powell, lex Cathline (Charlie Losasso 65), James Ewington (Ade Shokunbi 91), Louis Stead. Subs not used: Wes Daly, Hafed Al-Droubi, Cheyce Grant
Referee: Jack Clench
Merthyr Town remaining fixtures
Saturday 7 Salisbury v Merthyr Town
Tuesday 10 Weston-super-Mare v Merthyr Town
Saturday 14 Taunton v Merthyr Town
Saturday 21 Merthyr Town v Truro City
Tuesday 24 Merthyr Town v Dorchester Town
Saturday 28 Hayes and Yeading v Merthyr Town
Tuesday 31 Truro City v Merthyr Town
Saturday 4 Merthyr Town v Poole Town
Saturday 11 Merthyr Town v Tiverton Town
Monday 13 Yate Town v Merthyr Town
Saturday 18 Hartley Wintney v Merthyr Town
Saturday 25 Merthyr Town v Hendon