INJURY plagued Llandyrnog United put in a spirited display as they almost became the first team to beat Nantlle Vale this season.

With players unavailable still into double figures, manager Ryan Harden gave debuts to 16-year-olds Joel Rowlands and Tom Kelly.

At the other end of the scale, there was a start for veteran Derry Morris.

The game quickly settled into a pattern of the visitors having most of the ball, but the home side were the ones creating the better chances on the break.

Dan Lewis thought he had broken the deadlock for United when he dispossessed Ceiron Hall in the Vale goal, only to see the ball roll agonising just wide of the post.

However, Llandyrnog did take the lead just before half-time from an unlikely source.

Manager Ryan Harden rolled back the years as he danced past two challenges before unleashing a rocket from 25 yards, which Hall could only watch fly in off the angle of post and bar.

Hall was able to make the save of the match moments later, though, getting down brilliantly to keep out Lewis’ close range strike to ensure Llandyrnog's lead was just one goal at the interval.

The second half followed a similar pattern, with Vale searching for an equaliser and United looking to kill the game on the counter attack.

Morris and Danny Roberts were putting their experience to good use at the heart of the home defence and a famous win looked to be within their grasp.

That is until Aaron Griffiths grabbed a late equaliser, although United felt he looked suspiciously offside as the ball was played through to him.

There was still time for the league leaders to nearly snatch victory, but a stunning save from Dan Jones made sure the points were shared.

Harden said: "It’s a difficult time for us at moment with the sheer amount of injuries we have, but I couldn’t fault anyone out there today.

"The effort they put in was unbelievable and I’m just gutted for them we couldn’t hang on for the win."