|27 January 2024
|Northern League Division One
On a bitterly cold but dry winter’s afternoon, both teams had to deal with a cut up pitch and windy conditions although it was the home side who sealed the 3 points, just, & late on in the match through a penalty. Although Whitley Bay had more opportunities to score, the Stan nearly sneaked a draw and could have even snatched a victory. There were 2 changes from last Saturday’s win against Northallerton with Anderson and Greenwood replacing Carr and Lashley. It was Dan Stephenson’s 100th and Richie Slaughter’s 50th starts for the Stan.
Whitley Bay had the 1st 2 attacks in the 3rd minute but these came to nothing. The Stan then advanced before another Bay attack. Hopper then advanced & sent the ball to Reid & although the ball was cleared, Reid won it back although the move eventually ended in a Bay throw in. Both teams were now trying to advance up the pitch when they could although the resulting attacks were easily dealt with at both ends. The home side shot well wide after 10 minutes & they had another attack blocked 2 minutes later. This resulted in a corner which led to Brass making a great save before Bay eventually got another shot which went well wide. It was mainly home pressure now but the Stan were still trying to attack. The most dangerous Bay attack so far came in 15 minutes when Evans & Turnbull both had to make clearances. 3 Stan advances then came to nothing. In 19 minutes, Brass received a groin strain but soldiered on in the absence of a sub keeper. In 22 minutes, Reid advanced into the home box but his close range shot hit off the keeper. Bay then had 3 attacks with the 3rd headed out by Turnbull for a corner from which Hopper headed clear. The ball came back in & Evans headed out for another corner from which the ball was cleared twice on the Stan goal line. It resulted in another corner from which Brass easily caught the ball. In 29 minutes, there was more Bay pressure & Stephenson had to slide the ball out for another corner. The Stan were living dangerously as Bay kept attacking. The Stan started to revive in 34 minutes & 2 minutes later Anderson was upended just outside the home box. Stephenson’s resulting free kick was only stopped by a great save from the home keeper. Anderson was then brought down again. In 39 minutes. Stephenson took the free kick & although the ball was initially cleared it remined in the box near Reid who was pushed in the back but nothing was given despite the calls from the Stan Army for a penalty. There was more pressure from Bay although in injury time Hopper sent a long ball to Anderson but he was off side. The half ended with Brass getting up to save although a Stan free kick was given as he was fouled while doing so.
Bay attacked from the start of the 2nd half although the Stan defence blocked their initial chance to score & the follow up shot was blasted over the bar. Both teams were trying to attack & in 53 minutes, after a foul on Reid just outside the Bay D which resulted in a yellow card, Stephenson sent his free kick over the bar. Brass had to make a save in 55 minutes & 2 minutes later the advancing Hopper was brought down. Stephenson’s resulting free kick was sent straight at the home keeper. Lashley replaced Greenwood in 59 minutes to freshen up the Stan attack although it was Brass who had to catch a headed Bay effort next. As the wind got up, there was more Bay pressure. In 65 minutes though, Brass sent a long ball up to Lashley who was brought down 30 yards out. Stephenson sent the resulting free kick round the wall & the home keeper had to dive full length to put his effort out for a corner. The ball from the corner was missed by everyone & the same thing then happened at the other end. In 70 minutes, Evans cleared followed by Lashley counter attacking but was offside. Soon after, Evans cleared a Bay corner before Brass caught from a home free kick. Both teams were trying to attack & in 77 minutes Evans cleared again followed by a Stan shot being blocked & a rebound shot was blasted off the underside of the home bar although an offside flag was raised. In 81 minutes, Day went down just inside the Stan box after Doyle’s foot had made contact & a penalty was awarded. Holmes took it &, although Brass went the correct way, he blasted the ball into the back of the Stan net to make it 1-0 to Whitley Bay in the 82nd minute. Both teams were still trying to attack. In 89 minutes, a Lashley shot from the edge of the box was blocked by the home keeper & the rebound shot was blasted just wide by sub Burn. In the 91st minute, the advancing Hopper was brought down but the referee decided that he was not in the box. The resulting free kick on the penalty box line was taken by Burn but his effort was blocked. Bay countered but Brass got to the ball &, wind assisted, sent it back up but the home keeper got it under pressure as he collided with Hopper who was booked. In 95 minutes, a Stephenson effort from the edge of the box was blocked. The last Stan attack resulted in Bay counter attacking & although 2 defenders & a diving Brass were beaten the attacking home player’s shot went just wide at the far post & the final whistle was blown soon after.
So it was to be nil points for the Stan as Whitley Bay got a late winner although the Stan also came close to also getting a 2nd half goal. The Stan now host Crook Town on Wednesday evening.