Merthyr Town: Cash-strapped Martyrs thrashed 13-1 by Chesham United

Merthyr
Merthyr Town were re-established in 2010 after originally founding in 1934

They had a 15-year-old in goal, were 4-0 down inside 15 minutes and had a six-hour round trip - but were cheered off the pitch as heroes.

It was not your average away day for Evo-Stik Southern Premier League side Merthyr Town, beaten 13-1 at Chesham.

The Martyrs saw 80% of their squad leave this week because of a financial crisis and fielded a development squad of teenagers on Saturday.

Goalkeeper Ed Hewitson, 15, was named man of the match despite conceding 13.

Merthyr said cash flow had become "extremely tight" and that the club "had no choice but to cut the playing budget significantly".

An emergency meeting of Merthyr's owners will be held on Monday, 20 November after several boardroom resignations.

Merthyr trailed Chesham 9-0 at half-time on Saturday and were losing 13-0 before a consolation effort by Jacob Flower seven minutes from time.

Chesham celebrate Merthyr goal
The entire Merthyr XI - including the goalkeeper - ran the length of the field to celebrate their consolation goal

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"Absolutely heartbreaking game to watch but fantastic to see the Merthyr team that played today," said Chesham's update service on Twitter.

"On days like today, results don't matter. Non-league football is a family that supports each other through all eventualities."

The result leaves Merthyr in 13th place.

A club statement said that manager Gavin Williams "is confident he will be able to field a competitive team going forward and he is in discussion with players willing to stay".

Historic highs and lows

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Archive: Merthyr Tydfil beat Atalanta

The Martyrs were in financial difficulty in 2010, but kept their place in the English pyramid.

Moments of glory in the past have included beating Italian club Atalanta 2-1 in the first leg of their European Cup Winners Cup tie in 1987.

Their third Welsh Cup win came in the same year in a 1-0 victory over Newport County.

The Martyrs played in the Conference, one tier below the Football League, for six seasons until 1995, with their highest finish - fourth - coming in 1991-92.

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