By Daniel Prince
South Shields host Darlington RA at Peterlee tomorrow (Saturday) as they look to pick up their second win of the Ebac Northern League Division Two season.
The Mariners lost narrowly at Northallerton Town in midweek, but are set to welcome back a number of their players that were unavailable for the trip south.
James Pickering, Adam Sharp, Kyle Houshby and David Halliday are expected to return to contention, while manager Jon King is hopeful Aron Burn and Lee Maitland will be back to fitness.
Colin White and Paul Robinson are doubtful, but David Conroy may return from an ankle injury.
King is hopeful of a victory at Eden Lane, as he looks for his side to produce some “consistency” in the league.
He said: “I don’t think Darlington RA have had the best of starts, but they got a good win over Alnwick in midweek and have some good players that could hurt us.
“We are looking for a level of consistency, and a win against Darlington RA would be a good step towards that.
“Darlington RA have got goals in them, and have a good front two who can cause problems, but if we are on our game, we are a match for anybody.
“The players who are coming back will give everyone a lift, and hopefully we can get three points on the board.”
King was “proud” of those who played at Northallerton on Wednesday, with the Mariners only having 12 fit players available for the game due to injury problems and work commitments.
He added: “We were massive underdogs, as they have strengthened their squad and are really hoping to get promoted this year.
“I was a bit apprehensive when I knew how many players we had missing, and we also knew Barrie Smith would have to leave at half-time due to work commitments.
“David Conroy was travelling anyway, and agreed to go on the bench to make up the numbers even though he wasn’t fully fit.
“I was proud of the lads that went down there. It was good of David Conroy, as well, who went down there carrying a knock and said he would come on and help if we were desperate.”
David Molloy goes into the Darlington RA game in terrific form, having followed up his hat-trick in last week’s 4-0 win over Brandon United with another fine strike in the loss at Northallerton.
Shields and Darlington RA go head-to-head from 3pm at Peterlee.