Heaton Stannington vs West Auckland Town



Date Time Competition Season Attendance Round
Mon 6 May 2024 3:00 pm Northern League Division One 2023-24 2107 Play Off Final


Grounsell Park
Newcastle upon Tyne, North of Tyne, England, NE7 7HP, United Kingdom


Heaton Stannington3
West Auckland Town0


What a day. What a season. The Stan beat West Auckland 3-0 to win promotion to Northern Premier League East Division in the 4th tier of non-league. This was achieved in front of a record crowd of 2107 & was followed by the team & the Stan Army partying into the night. There was 1 change from Thursday night’s semi-final win over Birtley with Sayer being replaced by Slaughter who returned from suspension. There was a 100th start as a Stan player for Leighton Hopper.

The first 6 minutes of the match saw mainly pressure from West Auckland but both teams were trying to attack. In the 6th minute Reid past to Burn who was blocked & the visitors countered but put the ball wide under pressure from Brass. A Stan attack started by Slaughter was then headed clear & although the ball came back in it was caught by the keeper. 2 minutes later, a West free kick was blocked then cleared & Hopper countered & suppled Hornsby who was fouled. The resulting Stephenson free kick was headed over by Shepherd. Both teams were trying to attack & in 12 minutes a West free kick was cleared by Turnbull. The West keeper then had to catch twice before West hit the side netting in 19 minutes. In 20 minutes a ball from a Stan corner was punched clear by the keeper for another corner from which the ball was headed clear. The action continued at both ends & West had 2 corners before they shot over the Stan bar. Both teams were trying to attack but the defences were also working hard to stop them. In 31 minutes, the visiting keeper got to the ball just before Hopper. In 34 minutes, a ball from a Stephenson corner was headed clear before Slaughter sent it back in but the keeper caught it. In 36 minutes, there was a high defensive header from Turnbull but Brass then had to punch the ball over the bar. After Lamb had broke & was tackled just outside the West box, a Stephenson free kick was tipped away & down by the keeper although Shepherd’s close follow up shot was blocked. In 40 minutes there was some sustained pressure by the Stan ending with Burn heading just wide. 2 minutes later & the visitors shot wide & then sliced another effort over the bar. In the 45th minute, Lamb was about to shoot in the box but was prevented by a good tackle. Soon after he broke again & passed to Reid whose header was saved by the keeper & Stephenson’s follow up shot went wide.

With nothing between the teams at half time, manager Dean Nicolson did what he had done on Thursday & switched Lamb to the right wing. In less than 2 minutes the change had paid off when Lamb passed 2 players on the left corner edge of the West box & instead of passing he shot from the edge of the box & his diagonal high ball went into the far corner of the net for 1-0 in 47 minutes . What a goal! Almost immediately, Lamb again passed 2 player & shot just wide. The Stan kept attacking & in 56 minutes it was 2-0 when Slaughter passed to Reid whose effort was headed off the West goal line, but Burn was there to head the rebound effort into the net. West were not going to give up, but the Stan were also looking for more goals. In 65 minutes, Hopper broke, beat 3 men & tried to chip the keeper but the ball went just over. In 70 minutes, Brass got down to put a West effort just wide. West then sent a diagonal ball into the Stan box but it went high & over. 2 minutes later & Brass had to push the ball clear from a West corner. In 75 minutes, Burn shot over the West bar. Both teams continued trying to attack & in 80 minutes a West corner was headed clear by Reid. This was followed by a sub Anderson speculative long range shot which the keeper had to get down to save. West then saw an effort from a free kick being headed wide under pressure. In 85 minutes, sub Doyle shot just over. Almost immediately the Stan were 3-0 up as Doyle passed to Anderson who confidently shot past the keeper. Sub Lashley broke but was blocked & West shot well over in 89 minutes. Into 5 minutes of added time & West shot over again. In 93 minutes Lashley shot just wide under pressure. The match ended with a joined up Stan attack which finished with Anderson being blocked & Doyle then slicing the ball over the bar.

After a relatively even 1st half, the Stan stepped up a gear to comfortably beat West Auckland 3-0. The whole team put in a strong performance & as a result they were collectively given the man of the match award. Congratulations must also been given to Dean Nicolson & his management team. The team were also cheered on by most of the crowd including the Far Corner & the mini ultras. The result also means that the Stan have not been beaten at home in league related action since the 1st game of the season & are currently unbeaten in 13 games. It was a historic day which paves the way for a future in a league (& the FA Trophy) & at a level that the Stan have never played in before in their 114 years of official existence. And no, it is not a dream- the Stan have actually achieved promotion & after only two seasons in Northern League Division 1. What a team!

Kevin Mochrie

Photo Gallery 1

Photo Gallery 2

Interview – Dean Nicholson

Interview – Andy Burn

Interview – Paul Dixon (BBC Newcastle)

Heaton Stannington

1Lewis Brass Goalkeeper
2Kane Evans Defender
3Jay Hornsby Defender
14Daniel Stephenson 15 Midfielder
5Mark Turnbull 17 Defender
6Joe Shepherd Defender
7Andrew Burn 12 Midfielder
8Richard Slaughter Midfielder
9Leighton Hopper 18 Forward
10Sean Reid Midfielder
11Konner Lamb 16 Forward
12Daniel Sayer 7 Midfielder
15Liam Doyle 14 Defender
16Louis Anderson 11 Forward
17Alfie Marriott 5 Defender
18Jordan Lashley 9 Midfielder


Ryan Moore