South Shields joint manager Lee Picton heaped praise on the huge travelling support after over 500 Mariners cheered their team to a 3-1 Bank Holiday Monday victory at Scarborough Athletic.
A brace from Luke Sullivan and one from Matty Pattison secured the points for Shields as they continued their 100% start to life in EVO-STIK North.
The game between the league’s early top two attracted a crowd of 1,667 at Flamingo Land Stadium, with a superb atmosphere generated by both sets of supporters.
At the end of the match, Shields’ players and staff showed their appreciation for the terrific and vocal support they had been given throughout.
Picton said: “We had to do that, when hundreds and hundreds of fans had taken time out of their Bank Holiday weekend and spent their money to come down and support the team.
“It really is absolutely heart-warming and uplifting.
“The lads really appreciated the support and we made a point of making sure that was recognised at the end of the game.”
Picton also had praise for the organisation of the staff at Flamingo Land Stadium, and the way Boro kept going at 3-1 and a man down in the second half.
He added: “We worked them really hard, but they kept going right until the end and created a couple of chances in the closing stages.
“They’ve got a very defined gameplan and use Jimmy Beadle very well at the top end, getting players in and around him, which caused us some problems at times.
“I’m sure they’ll cause every other team in the league problems.
“The welcome we were given at the ground, and the organisation, was top-class.
“Congratulations to Scarborough for doing things really well on that side.”
Watch Picton’s full interview at the top of this page.
Dillon Morse and Barrie Smith have gone head-to-head in the first episode of MarinersTV feature Clever Kicks!
The feature sees two players face each other in a penalty challenge with a twist.
Each player is given two minutes to answer as many general knowledge questions as they can.
For every question they answer correctly, they take a penalty, and for each incorrect answer, they must complete one press-up.
The winner is the player to score the most penalties in two minutes.
Over the coming weeks and months, the players’ scores will be compiled into a leaderboard to see who comes out on top.
See how Dillon and Barrie got on in the video above.
South Shields completed the signing of talented former Newcastle United youngster Jamie Holmes on Saturday.
The forward signed less than an hour before the friendly at Whitby Town, and scored after just 13 minutes to mark the occasion in fine fashion.
The 19-year-old had played two previous friendlies for the Mariners under the guise of a trialist, impressing in the first 45 minutes of the game against Gateshead, and scoring in the second half of the match at Blyth Spartans.
He had offers from elsewhere, but was ultimately persuaded to join Shields after sitting down with joint managers Graham Fenton and Lee Picton.
Holmes said: “I was very glad to get the deal done, because you don’t want to be waiting around so close to the start of the season.
“I wasn’t sure at first, because I had another offer, but I called Graham and Lee and they got me down to the ground and showed me all the plans.
“I don’t think they’ll be in these leagues for very long, to be honest.
“I was pleasantly surprised by everything that they said.
“There’s only one way the club’s going really, and that’s up.”
Holmes progressed through the ranks at Newcastle after joining the club during the 2010-11 season.
Last season saw him play regularly for the Magpies’ Under-23s side, while one of his most memorable moments came in 2015 when he hit a 20-minute hat-trick for the Under-18s in a game against Arsenal.
Since first linking up with the Shields squad at the start of July, Holmes – the brother of North Shields player Dean – has been impressed with the quality of his team-mates and is convinced he has made the correct decision.
He added: “I’ve been surprised by how good the players are.
“Most of them have been at professional clubs before and they’re very welcoming, so I’ve enjoyed my time here already and I’ve only been here for a few weeks.
“In terms of the coaching, I already knew who Graham and Lee were, because my brother worked with Fents at North Shields and said how good he was, and I knew Pickers from his time coaching at Newcastle, so I knew how good they were before I came here.”
Securing the signature of Holmes delighted Fenton, who was impressed with his performance at Whitby.
He said: “We’re really pleased to get Jamie over the line.
“I thought he was really bright on Saturday.
“He tired towards the end and that’s to be expected, so we’ve got a bit to work on with Jamie and a few of the other lads in terms of their fitness, as you’d expect at this stage of the season.
“I just thought his first half performance was really bright.
“He was a constant threat, and their defenders were always worried about what was happening in behind them.
“We know we’ve got players who can play in front and play tidy football, but it’s great to have that threat in behind as well.”