Under-15s storm to 11-1 win
RFYL – South Shields FC Under-15s v Swalwell Swifts Under-15s
Venue – Bents Park, South Shields
South Shields: Taylor, Rafferty, Henderson, Andersen, Simpson McGill, Smith, Urwin, Slater, Daglish, Hogg, McBeth. Sub: Howe.
Swalwell: Dywer, Pinkerton, Livington, Carmicael, Lorraine, Ledger, Winn, Patterson, Wills, Tom, Newton. Subs: Blake, Searle, Brown.
South Shields: McBeth (3), Slater (2), Rafferty, Andersen, McGill, Urwin, Daglish, Howe.
Before the game, both sides joined together (see main image) to commemorate the centenary of the 2014 Christmas Truce match, as part of the Football Remembers week.
Report by Philip Reay
South Shields Under-15s entertained Swalwell Swifts at a windswept Bents Park on Sunday, and despite playing into the teeth of a strong wind blowing straight down the pitch, the young Mariners started the game on the front foot.
Liam Simpson McGill picked the ball up on the left flank and outpaced the defence before cutting in on goal and firing a shot that was well saved by the opposition goalkeeper.
From the restart, James Hogg collected the ball and played a defence splitting ball to Alex McBeth, but his shot flew just over the bar.
With the game approaching the 10th minute, Simpson McGill again outpaced the defence before playing the ball into the path of McBeth, and he in turn found Scott Rafferty. His shot cannoned of the post and back to Simpson McGill, who instinctively played the ball back to McBeth, and he opened the scoring with a well-taken goal from close range.
Shields maintained the pressure on the opposition, and from the restart they again pressed forward, winning a corner on the right. McBeth floated the ball into the box, where Lewis Slater slipped his marker to head in and double the advantage.
The strong wind was proving to be no hindrance to the young Shields side, and within a minute they further extended the advantage as Rafferty drove the ball beyond the keeper to take his side into a three-goal advantage.
In a rare foray into the Shields half, Swalwell reduced the deficit on 20 minutes. A long ball over the defence was collected by Kieran Carmichael, and he slipped the ball beyond Connor Taylor to make it 3-1.
The three-goal cushion was restored within five minutes as Rafferty played the ball from the right flank across field, and Simpson McGill reacted quickest to head in and put Shields 4-1 up.
Four soon became five. McBeth floated a corner into the box, and Liam Andersen made no mistake as he sent the ball beyond the reach of the keeper.
South Shields were making light of the wind as they continued to pin the opposition deep in their own half. With the half hour mark approaching, McBeth – obviously inspired by an advert for a gambling website – attempted an overhead kick that had the same result as that on the advert, as the ball flew well wide of the goal.
The sixth goal was not long in coming. Rafferty played the ball into the path of Slater, and he chipped the ball over the head of the advancing keeper to make it 6-1.
With five minutes remaining in the first half, a flowing move started by Codie Howe and involving Hogg and George Daglish released McBeth, and with a more conventional finish he fired in from the edge of the box to give Shields a six-goal cushion.
In the last action of the first half, the young Mariners went further ahead as Daglish collected the ball on the edge of the box before stepping away from his marker and firing in from the edge of the box to take Shields into the break with an 8-1 advantage.
At the start of the second half, Shields again pressed forward, and a 25-yard shot from Sam Urwin eluded the Swalwell keeper to put the Mariners eight goals to the good.
Within a minute, Shields reached double figures. The Swalwell defence were unable to clear the ball, and as it pin-balled around the goal, Howe had the presence of mind to back heel the ball into the net.
Within a minute, McBeth completed a personal hat-trick as he fired in from 10 yards to make the score 11-1.
Swalwell despite the score line did not give up as they harried the Shields forwards to prevent them from creating further scoring opportunities.
Ten minutes into the second half Codie Howe collected the ball just inside the Swalwell half and fired a shot at goal that hit the bar before being cleared.
Shields were being restricted to long range shots as the visitors packed their defence and on 55 minutes Scott Rafferty collected a ball from James Hogg and fired the ball towards goal but he was denied by a fine fingertip save by the Swalwell keeper.
The keeper again denied Shields on the hour; Ethan Henderson won the ball in the centre of the park and found Scott Rafferty in space and he fired a 25 yard shot at goal that was tipped over the bar by the keeper.
Shields continued to press forward but the Swalwell defence held firm and there was no further scoring as Shields won the day 11-1.