Late goals from Darius Osei and Blair Adams sealed South Shields’ passage into the second qualifying round of the Emirates FA Cup as they saw off the challenge of a plucky Shildon side at Dean Street.

The Mariners were a goal up and looking comfortable after Conor Tee picked out the top corner with a sumptuous strike on 17 minutes.

Shildon equalised from a corner later in the first half, though, and it was not until the closing stages that the Mariners re-established control to secure a 3-1 win.

Osei scored the vital third goal of the game as part of a bright cameo from the bench and Adams had the final say as he prodded home at the back post from a low Jordan Hunter cross.

Graham Fenton named a strong Shields line-up to face a Shildon side which had enjoyed an unbeaten start to the season following their promotion from the Northern League.

The youth of Will Jenkins and Sam Hodgson were supplemented by the experience of Jon Shaw and Alex Kempster as part of four changes from the team which started the victory at Scarborough Athletic five days earlier, with Nathan Lowe and Callum Ross missing out through injury and strike duo Osei and Ntumba Massanka named among the substitutes.

They quickly hit their stride and Tee made his intentions known from the first whistle, hurdling two challenges before seeing his effort from 20 yards drift wide just 30 seconds in.

The Mariners appeared determined to test Shaun Newbrook in the Shildon goal and the first to sting his palms was Hunter with 25 yard drive which the goalkeeper pushed away.

Jenkins, Robert Briggs and Hodgson also threatened in the early exchanges while at the other end, Myles Boney got his body behind a powerful David Atkinson strike to maintain parity.

Tee was at the heart of much of Shields’ best work and his confidence was clear as he looked to score for the fourth consecutive game. He tried to catch Newbrook out with a dipping attempt from long range which moved in the air, but he was equal to the effort.

The next time Tee took aim, though, there was no keeping it out.

Adams played a pass inside from the left channel and Tee shifted his weight onto his right side before taking a touch and caressing the ball into the top corner from 25 yards to continue his outstanding scoring streak.

That gave Shields a 17th minute lead which was warranted given their dominance in the possession and territory stakes, and Tee looked like he might make it a quickfire double when Jenkins bypassed the Shildon midfield with a delightful ball over the top, but as he readied himself to shoot an unfortunate stumble allowed the defence time to recover and his eventual effort was blocked.

Dillon Morse was the next to go close as his header from a Briggs corner was cleared off the line. However, a second goal proved elusive for the visitors.

Shildon equalised against the run of play 11 minutes before half-time from a Joe Posthill corner. His delivery from the right was headed against the bar by Michael Sweet before Briggs nodded it against his own woodwork, and in the scramble which followed, Atkinson became the latest to strike the crossbar but this time the ball bounced down and beyond the line.

Shields were not as fluid as they had been in the early stages but did create three opportunities to go back in front before half-time, with Kempster narrowly failing to convert an Adams cross, Tee striking wide from outside the area and Morse going close with his own attempt from long range.

The Railwaymen frustrated Shields in the second half as they showed considerable improvements. Former Shields Academy player and loanee Will McCamley was a threat on the left flank and he had a decent opportunity within two minutes of the restart, but his shot went comfortably past the post.

Kempster’s final action before being replaced by Osei was a cross which Hunter controlled with his right before striking with his left, forcing Newbrook into a decent save.

Osei was introduced alongside Massanka shortly after the hour but they almost saw their side fall behind when Posthill’s corner fell to Atkinson in the six-yard box, but this time he could not find the net as his effort on the turn cleared the crossbar.

Boney saved from Posthill later in the half while Newbrook denied Massanka, with the tie seemingly heading for a replay as the sides remained locked at 1-1 going into the final 10 minutes.

Substitute Will McGowan almost changed that narrative for the Mariners soon after coming on, driving forward before unleashing a low strike from the edge of the box which struck the post.

The woodwork at that end of the ground had taken a pounding over the course of the game and it was hit again by Osei when he headed Hunter’s cross against it with six minutes left. Osei sensed the chance had not gone, though, and chased the loose ball out to the left channel before beating his man and sending in what appeared to be a cross with his left foot. Yet again, it cannoned against the post but this time it bounced beyond the line and into the opposite side netting to nudge Shields’ noses in front.

Shildon goalkeeper Newbrook was shown a straight red card for an off-the-ball incident in the moments which followed but the home side’s challenge was not over, with Boney called on to make a vital save a minute into stoppage time from a Dean Thexton header.

As stoppage time ticked into a sixth minute and the Mariners advanced up the field, their progression into the next round looked all but assured but they added the third goal to make sure of it with almost the final kicks of the game.

Impressive hold-up play by Massanka released Hunter just outside the six-yard box on the right of the area and he squared it for his fellow wing-back Adams, who drove home his fourth goal of the season to give the travelling support some more to shout about.

Shields – who are at home to Ashton United in the league on Tuesday – now look forward to Monday’s draw for the second qualifying round.

South Shields: Boney, Hunter, Adams, Shaw, Morse, Bodenham, Jenkins (McGowan 78), Briggs (c), Hodgson (Massanka 63), Tee, Kempster (Osei 63). Subs not used: Steavens, Rossiter.

Goals: Tee (17), Osei (84), Adams (90+6).

Attendance: 824.

Image: Kev Wilson.

South Shields begin their latest Emirates FA Cup campaign on Saturday as they bid to emulate their historic achievements of a year ago. 

Last season, the Mariners reached the first round of the prestigious competition for the first time since reforming in 1974, beating higher-ranked opposition including FC Halifax Town and Southport along the way.

Their opening tie this term pits them against Shildon, who are one tier below Shields in the Northern Premier League East Division after winning promotion from the Northern League last season.

Bobby Moore’s side have begun life at that level with three wins and a draw from their four games, and they count former Shields academy graduate and loanee Will McCamley among their ranks.

Manager Graham Fenton is expecting a difficult afternoon for his Mariners side at Dean Street.

He said: “We’ve done our homework on them and come up with a gameplan.

“Shildon is never an easy place to go and with the strong start they’ve had to the season, we know they’re going to provide us with a real test.

“Bobby gets them organised and we’ll give the tie all of our due care and attention.

“Another positive result and performance is our aim because we know how important this competition is.”

Shields go into the first qualifying round tie buoyed by Monday’s 2-0 win at Scarborough Athletic, which moved them to the top of the Pitching In Northern Premier League Premier Division table.

Fenton insists there are plenty of improvements which can still be made, though.

He added: “We’ve only dropped two points so we’re pleased with the start we’ve had in the league.

“We weren’t great in the second half against FC United and we know we can be better in general, but that has to be the mentality.

“It’s not a case of us being top of the league, winning five out of six and just being content with that.

“We’re top of the league and want to get better and be as good as we can be.”

Shields are expected to be without midfielder Nathan Lowe, who sustained a hamstring injury in the Scarborough match.

Joao Gomes remains a long-term absentee after undergoing knee surgery but there are hopes that defender Jon Shaw will be in contention following a groin injury.

Kick-off at Dean Street – which has a post code of DL4 1HA – is at 3pm and admission prices are £9 for adults, £7 for concessions and free for under-14s with an accompanying adult.

South Shields face a trip to Shildon in the first qualifying round of the Emirates FA Cup.

The tie will be played at Dean Street on Saturday, September 4th.

The sides were regular adversaries in the Northern League until the Mariners secured promotion in 2017.

Shildon have since joined them in the Pitching In Northern Premier League, having been promoted as part of non-league football’s restructure this summer.

They are one tier below Shields in the East Division, and are top of the early table having scored six goals without reply across their first two matches.

Among their players is Will McCamley, who is a graduate of Shields’ academy and made his senior debut for the club last season during a loan spell from Huddersfield Town.

The Mariners reached the first round of the FA Cup for the first time since the club’s reformation in 1974 last season, beating the likes of FC Halifax Town and Southport before falling to a 3-1 defeat at Cheltenham Town, who went on to win the League Two title.