Newcastle Chemfica Amateurs 1-4 Heaton Stannington A
Northern Alliance Neville Cowey Cup Group One
Saturday 10 April 2021
After an unlucky exit from the Minor Cup last Saturday on penalties, the Stan reserves played their second match of 2021 and their first in the Neville Cowey Cup group stage, the competition for Northern Alliance Division 3 teams. On a dry but bitterly cold afternoon at the Longbenton Sports Ground on the grass pitch that Chemfica Reserves use as their home, there were 2 changes with last week’s subs Munir and Forster replacing Dunne and Walker with Bruce moving up front.
The match started relatively quietly and although both teams were trying to attack, the Stan had more of the ball. There was a great move by Harper and Jones after 8 minutes but some good defending stopped Jones getting a shot in. 2 more Stan attacks came to nothing before Forster tried a long shot in 15 minutes which the home keeper easily caught. Then a joined up attack saw shots by Munir, Harper and Bruce blocked. In 18 minutes, a Stan free kick from far out bounced awkwardly and over the bar. Chemfica then had a free kick which resulted in a shot that Ripken easily picked up. The Stan and the referee, who is now probably trying to forget the match, both thought the visitors had taken the lead in 20 minutes when Bruce forced the ball into the net in the crowded box. With only one official presiding, the referee had to consult the home linesman who had his flag up and was convinced that the ball had gone out of play before being crossed into the box. The referee changed his mind and the match remained goalless. Chemfica then had only their 2nd attack but Ripken caught the resulting shot. In 28 minutes, a long ball to Jones saw his shot blocked successfully by the keeper before Harper forced a corner. 3 minutes later Harper supplied the advancing Bruce who shot just wide. Harper’s shot was then deflected for a corner when he should have done better and from it Harris headed wide. The Stan kept the pressure on with Chemfica only having 2 rare unsuccessful moves forward although the 2nd was blocked by a good tackle by Doyle. The Stan were finally in the lead after 36 minutes when Munir took the ball into the box and passed to Harper who tapped it into the net. 3 minutes later and Harper was supplied again by Bruce but his header was caught by the keeper. After Harris had headed the wrong way from a corner, Chemfica had a rare attack but Ripken easily caught a long range effort. The 1st half was one sided as most of the play took place in the home half although the Stan should have scored more than their solitary goal.
The 2nd half started with 2 Stan attacks blocked and 2 corners. In 48 minutes, Munir got another assist when he ran down the middle with the ball and into the box and crossed to the advancing Jones who slotted the ball away for 2-0. The Stan kept attacking which included shots by Harper and Bruce but the home keeper and his defence worked well to block them. In 55 minutes the home side had a long range but rare effort which Ripken caught. The home keeper then blocked a Munir effort at the other end before Ripken had to make a double save and this was the 1st time in the match that he had been really threatened. In 59 minutes, a joined up Stan attack saw Bruce’s shot put just wide by the home keeper. The 2 initial subs were then involved in the action as Dannatt shot wide through the crowded box and in 70 minutes the ball was crossed into the box and when the keeper dropped it under pressure which allowed Walker to score although the ball had gone out of play in the build up but this time the linesman didn’t flag. In 72 minutes it was 4-0 when Harper scored under pressure in the box. He then had an easier chance to score for his hattrick but sliced his effort wide. He then had another effort blocked before shooting wide before being replaced by the 5th sub, Stan legend Kevin Carr in 74 minutes. The home side got a consolation goal in 80 minutes when they got a surprise penalty which they converted. In 82 minutes, good work by Carr saw him supply Uweru but his shot was easily blocked by the keeper. Walker then shot over when he should have passed to Carr. The Stan kept attacking with Carr supplying Dannatt whose shot was blocked. Although the Stan found their scoring boots in the 2nd half, and still dominated the play, Chemfica did get more into the match but without really threatening the visitors. The Stan though were worthy winners and should have won by a far greater margin. Although they have only played one match, they sit 3rd in their group of 7 teams.
Stan: Ripken; Doyle; Forster; Anjos; Harris; Riley; Bruce; Poole; Jones; Harper; Munir. Subs (all used): Walker; Da Costa; Dannatt; Uweru; Carr.