By Bob Wray
South Shields welcome Willington to the Eden Lane ground on Saturday for an Ebac Northern League fixture, with kick-off at 3pm.
Without tempting providence, one assumes that there will be no adverse weather considerations or circumstances that will prevent this game from being played.
Last Saturday’s match at Heaton Stannington’s most unfortunate abandonment means that it is now two months since a league game was actually staged and/or completed, and the backlog of matches to be re-arranged is a total of six currently outstanding, with the final game of the season currently arranged for April 26.
So, hopefully with the weather forecast set for fair, the Mariners will resume their very much affected league fixture programme, with points as ever required to achieve a mid-table to an upper-half finish to their season.
Quite numerous games are in hand and points hopefully won will favourably advantage the table position.
So as said now on several previous occasions, with possibly a near full strength squad available for selection, an entertaining game is anticipated, and the result hopefully to be a reversal of the October defeat at Willington that will satisfy management, committee and supporters alike.
P16. W6. D3. L7. F29. A31. Total GD-18. Pts.36. League table 13th.
Form. Last six games one point, form table 22nd.
South Shields. HOME.
P12. W4. D5. L3. F20. A22. Total GD -5. Pts. 32. League table 16th.
Form. Last six games seven points, form table 13th.
South Shields’s next game is on Saturday, March 8, away to Seaham Red Star. Two games have been re-arranged – Tuesday, March 11 at home to Thornaby, and Wednesday, March 19 away to West Allotment Celtic.
Many congratulations are very well deserved on the fine achievements of two of our junior and youth development teams.
The South Shields FC Under-16s – members of the Russell Foster Tyne and Wear Youth League – will contest the final of the County Cup, details of date and venue anticipated.
The South Shields FC Raiders Under-14s – members of the Chase Holmes Youth League – will also be competing in their League Cup final, match details to be announced soon.
This represents a terrific advertisement for our splendid young players, who have all done so very well indeed in both reaching these forthcoming cup finals, and local support to cheer them on to much hoped for victories will be no doubt well in evidence as encouragement on their big days.
By Daniel Prince
Today’s game at Heaton Stannington was abandoned after just short of an hour after a serious injury to one of the home side’s players.
South Shields had turned in a terrific performance against the promotion-chasers and deservedly led 2-0 after a goal from Colin White and an own goal by Kevin Carr.
However, Heaton Stannington’s Lee Johnson was then involved in a collision on 58 minutes and screamed out in agony after hurting his back.
The player was prone on the ground for some time before the referee brought the players off the pitch, and an ambulance was called for.
Just short of 5pm, the match was abandoned, and the ambulance had still not arrived at the ground.
It finally arrived some 48 minutes after the incident.
That means Shields have still not completed a game in the league since December 28.
Things could not have gone much better for them until the abandonment against promotion-chasing Heaton.
The Mariners – with the wind at their backs – started on the front foot, and proved menacing from set-piece situations.
They were rewarded in the eighth minute when Chris Feasey’s corner from the left bounced down off the crossbar into the path of White, who bundled it past the defender on the line.
Ben Telford then scuffed his effort straight at Jak Wells at the other end, before Shields doubled their advantage.
On 16 minutes, a Feasey free-kick from deep evaded everyone and eventually went in off Heaton’s Carr.
The home side claimed the ball had been cleared off the line by despairing defenders, but the linesman’s flag immediately went up to signal the ball had crossed the line.
Dean Deagle’s free-kick for Heaton Stannington was as close as they came, with Wells doing well to palm over his powerful effort.
Shields thought they had gone three up before half-time after another free-kick was bundled home by Luke Richardson, but it was ruled out for offside.
They almost saw their lead halved just before the break after tying themselves in knots at the back, but Carr dragged his effort wide as he looked to make up for his own goal.
Heaton put on some pressure at the start of the second half, with White bravely blocking an effort from Paul Blakey before Phil Smith fired well over.
The last action of the match before the sickening injury saw Adam Burnicle go clean through on goal for Shields before going down, with the referee ruling it was not a penalty.
The abandonment now means the Mariners have nine fixtures that will need to be played in midweek before the end of the season.
Their next game is against Willington at Peterlee on Saturday.
SOUTH SHIELDS: Wells, Hall, Riding, Fraser, White, Locke, Burnicle, Cutts, Ramsey (c), Richardson, Feasey. Subs not used: Lynch, Logan, Greenwell, Fenwick, Clark.
Goals: White (8), Carr own goal (16).