Preview: Darlington RA vs South Shields
South Shields manager Jon King insists his side will face a much tougher examination against Darlington RA tonight than they did in the reverse fixture.
The Mariners thrashed RA 6-0 at Mariners Park in August, but the Darlington club are having an impressive season.
They are fourth in Ebac Northern League Division Two heading into the fixture at Brinkburn Road, which is subject to a 1pm pitch inspection.
Shields are looking for a 19th consecutive victory in all competitions, and King is eager for them to get some points on the board in the league again.
The Mariners have had just two league fixtures in the last five-and-a-half weeks, and Chester-le-Street have reduced their lead at the top to four points, with Ryhope CW a further two back.
King said: “Darlington RA are a better side than they showed when they played us in August, as their position in the table proves.
“They will certainly be tough opposition, but we need to keep this run going and want to extend our lead at the top of the table.
“Chester-le-Street and Ryhope are hot on our heels, so we need to get some points on the board again.
“We’ve had a few games postponed recently and they have taken advantage of that to close the gap.
“We’ll be going there fresh, though.”
The game has been in some doubt because of the wet conditions, but King is eager for it to beat the weather.
He added: “We have to prepare for the game being on.
“It will be another tough one for us, because they’re riding high in the table and have had some excellent results this season.
“Every game for us is tough, and teams are well up for it when they play South Shields and are desperate to end our winning run.
“We’ll have to be at our best if we’re to keep it going. If we don’t do things right, we will drop points.”
Shields will be without the injured Lewis Galpin and Lewis Teasdale for the 7.30pm kick-off at Brinkburn Road, which has a postcode of DL3 9LF.
WORDS: Daniel Prince. IMAGE: Peter Talbot.