Heaton Stannington vs Boro Rangers

7:30 pm

Heaton Stannington vs Shildon

7:30 pm

Heaton Stannington vs North Shields

3:00 pm

Heaton Stannington vs Birtley Town

Usually, you would be called an April Fool to go out in torrential rain on April 1st but there were no fools among the 502 crowd who sensibly turned up to watch this important clash between 2 play-off rivals with 3 points at stake & potentially a home play-off advantage for the winners. In the end, despite both teams positively trying to win, the match ended in stalemate. There were 3 changes from Friday’s 4-2 win at Sunderland RCA with Evans, Sayer & Anderson replacing Shepherd, Doyle & Lashley.

The Stan started positively from the kick off with Hopper almost immediately running in on the Birtley goal, but the flag was up. Anderson had a shot saved in 5 minutes & 2 minutes later the Stan had 2 make 2 clearances as Birtley also tried to attack. The Stan then had to head clear another Birtley effort before a visiting player shot just wide when they looked like scoring. Birtley had another corner cleared in 10 minutes while 3 minutes later Stephenson sent a free kick over the bar at the other end. Anderson then won the ball & advanced but was blocked for a corner. On an increasingly heavy pitch, both teams were trying to attack but both defences were also working well. In 27 minutes, a long range Birtley effort saw Brass punch the ball over the bar. From the resulting corner, Brass got down to make a great save. It was end to end with Hopper looking particularly dangerous. In 34 minutes, Burn & Sayer had shots blocked followed by Hopper having a shot saved. In 37 minutes, Sayer shot just over under pressure. Birtley then had 2 corners that were cleared. A Stepheson free kick went wide in 40 minutes followed b ymore end to end action including Brass punching out for a corner. The half ended with another Birtley corner which Reid headed clear.

The 2nd half started slightly quieter as both teams had to deal with the increasingly wet & muddy conditions. Brass had to save in 49 minutes but there was then action at both ends. In 57 minutes, a Hornsby ball into the Birtley box was headed over by Burn. Soon after Hornsby sent a diagonal ball into the visitor’s box & although it went past the diving keeper it also went just wide of the post. In 60 minutes, Reid won the ball & passed to Hooper who shot just wide. In 63 minutes, from a Stephenson corner, Turnbull was blocked twice before a Birtley counter attack was cleared. It was mainly Stan now although Brass had to save in 67 minutes. 2 minutes later & Birtley shot well over the bar. Just after coming on as a sub, Lashley was supplied by Reid but the keeper got out to block his shot. In 76 minutes, Birtley headed just wide of the Stan goal. Things were more even now between the 2 teams with conditions getting more slippy. In 78 minutes, a ball from Horsnby was cleared & Birtley counter attacked with Scott clearing before a rebound shot went just over. In 81 minutes Birtley shot wide under pressure. In 82 minutes, Sayer was cynically brought down as he was about to enter the Birtley box & the resulting Reid free kick hit the wall. Twice the Birtley keeper got to the ball before the advancing Hopper before Brass easily caught from a long-range effort in 88 minutes. Both teams were still trying to attack as the match entered 3 minutes of added time. In 92 minutes, Reid headed clear from a Birtley corner & the ball went back into the Stan box & went just wide of the post although the Stan were given a free kick for a push. Lashley then broke & supplied Hornsby who headed the ball into Reid whose header was easily caught by the Birtley keeper as the match ended 0-0.

Both teams dealt well with the poor conditions underfoot & remained positive as the pitch got soggier. The draw meant that Birtley remained in 3rd place with the Stan in 5th 2 points behind but with a game in hand which if won would take them back to 3rd place. The Stan are now away on Saturday at Crook Town.

Kevin Mochrie

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Heaton Stannington vs Sunderland RCA

On a bitterly cold Friday night, the singing Stan Army were warmed up by watching the Stan move up to 4th, & a promotion play off place, after a convincing 4-0 win in the Tyne-Wear derby with Sunderland RCA. There were 5 changes from the win 2 nights previously against Guisborough with Corkhill, Sayer, Marriott, Shepherd & Palmer replacing Brass, Evans, Hornsby, Scott & Turnbull.

The Stan were 1-0 up after 3 minutes when a ball from their 1st corner was cleared off the line & the ball went back into the box to Hopper who scored. In 6 minutes, a good shot by Lashley was saved by the visiting keeper. From the resulting corner, Marriott headed against the bar. 2 minutes later & Hopper broke through, but the keeper got down to catch the ball. It was all one-way traffic as the Stan kept attacking & RCA didn’t have a shot until the 12th minute when Corkhill got down to save.  In 18 minutes, Reid had a shot blocked followed by Lashley shooting over. In 21 minutes, Burn advanced into the RCA box & the ball was eventually cleared but out to Palmer who sent the ball back into the box & it was headed into the net by Reid for 2-0. It was all Stan now & a Hopper shot was blocked in 24 minutes. In 31 minutes, Hopper was injured after a tackle on him & he had to be replaced by Anderson. In 33 minutes, a ball from a Stan corner was headed clear. Although the RCA defence was doing its best to stop the Stan attacks, it was 3-0 in 40 minutes. Burn tried a speculative shot from 35 yards & his Barnoldswickesque strike went straight into the back of the net. What a goal! The 1st half finished with more Stan attacks on the visitor’s goal.

The 1st minute of the 2nd half saw the Stan go 4-0 up when, after balls from the Stan had been blocked twice in the RCA box, Reid slid in on goal & put the ball in the net. In 54 minutes, Shepherd headed clear a rare RCA effort followed by Lashley counterattacking & although he was brought down nothing was given. In 56 minutes, a ball from a Stan corner was cleared off the line. In 61 minutes, another rare RCA attack saw a ball from a free kick being cleared in the 6 yard box by Sayer. In 63 minutes, a shot by Palmer looked like it was going in but the RCA keeper pulled off a good save. From the resulting corner, Sayer got up to head but t the ball was cleared & then cleared again after Doyle had sent the ball back in. From the resulting corner Marriott headed just over. The Stan kept pressing for a 5th goal & the RCA defence had to work hard to stop them. Corkhill did though have to make 2 rare saves at the other end in 72 minutes. The Stan kept attacking & Sayer came close in 90 minutes when he put the ball just over the RCA bar. The match ended with Doyle, who had worked hard all night, sending the ball across the RCA gaol but Reid could not connect with it.

The Stan advanced 2 places up the table after a comfortable win which featured some good goals including an excellent one from man of the match Andy Burn. The Stan are now away on Tuesday & Friday at Tow Law & Sunderland RCA respectively.

Kevin Mochrie

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Heaton Stannington vs Guisborough Town

The Stan were back to winning ways, at the 4th attempt, when they beat promotion rivals Guisborough. The match was action packed & competitive although the performance given by all the Stan player deserved the win. There were 5 changes from Saturday’s defeat at Shildon with Brass, Hornsby, Scott, Doyle & Reid replacing Corkhill, Shepherd, Marriott, Palmer & Stephenson. There were home debuts from the bench for Lennox & Palmer.

The Stan started on the attack & their 2nd one saw them win a free kick, taken by Doyle in the 2nd minute, which saw Lashley confidently get up to head the ball into the back of the net for 1-0 Most of the play was from the Stan who started very positively. Unfortunately, in the 12th minute, Guisborough scored from their 1st attack. They won a corner from which Reid cleared with the rebound shot being blocked by Brass but the 2nd rebound shot was put in the net for 1-1. There was another attack by the visitors in 15 minutes, but it was still mainly the Stan. A minute later & Reid broke through on goal & was pushed just outside the box but surprisingly nothing was given. An advancing Guisborough forward then had a great opportunity to score when he turned & shot but Brass made a great save. After 22 minutes, there was some sustained pressure from the Stan with shots by Hopper & Lashley being blocked. Both teams were trying to attack & it was the Stan who scored in 28 minutes when a great move then shot by Lashley saw the ball go into the net off the post. In 30 minutes, a Guisborough free kick into the Stan box was headed out for a corner. 2 minutes later & the Stan were 3-1 up when, after 2 blocked attempts in a crowded Guisborough box, Scott sent the ball into the net. Both teams were trying to attack but the Stan defence in particular were working well & as a result Brass was rarely threatened. He did though have to get down to save from a free kick in 38 minutes. In 40 minutes, Lashley passed to the advancing Hopper whose shot was blocked for a corner. The Stan kept the pressure on the Guisborough defence but there were no more goals & the half ended 3-1 to the Stan.

Although the 2nd half was goalless, it was not a dull affair & both teams, but especially the Stan, tried to add to the goal tally. In 48 minutes, a Stan corner saw the ball being punched clear before the visiting keeper had to make a save. From the resulting corner the keeper punched the ball clear & from the 2nd corner Doyle sent the ball into the side netting. Guisborough then blocked the ball from a 3rd corner. In 57 minutes, a Guisborough player broke through & sent the ball diagonally to Brass’s right but it hit the left post before going across the goal & out when it looked like it was going into the net. This was followed at the other end by a Doyle free kick being punched clear then Hopper forced a corner. The resulting Doyle corner was cleared before the ball came back to him & he shot well over. In 62 minutes, Doyle supplied Evans who crossed to Reid in the box & his header went just wide. The action was end to end as both teams continued to attack when they could. In 67 minutes, there was a great run by Burn although he eventually shot over. 3 minutes later & Hopper won the ball but was blocked in the Guisborough box. In 76 minutes, Hopper made a great turn & passed to Doyle who crossed into the box towards sub Lennox but the ball was headed out for a corner. From it, the keeper punched the ball clear. The Stan kept pressing & the traffic was now mainly one way. In 82 minutes, a long ball to Lennox saw the Guisborough keeper make a good save from his great shot. Guisborough had a couple of attacks cleared before it was back to the Stan & the match ended 3-1 to the Stan.

The Stan Army were delighted after witnessing an important win over good opposition which saw the Stan go back up to 6th place & level on points with Guisborough in 5th. The hard-working Stan now only have a 2 day break before they host Sunderland RCA on Friday night.

Kevin Mochrie

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Heaton Stannington vs Crook Town

On a bitterly cold day but in front of a great crowd of 372, there was a lot of action & attacking play from both sides but unfortunately only 2 goals as the Stan had to settle for a point when a win looked likely as Crook stole a draw even though they were down to 10 men after 8 minutes. There was 1 change from Wednesday’s home draw against West Allotment with Evans replacing Doyle.

The Stan kicked off positively with the ball being passed to Slaughter who advanced & tried a speculative long range shot which had to be blocked by a defender. Then at the other end, Corkhill had to punch away from a corner. Both teams were trying to attack & in 7 minutes, a Stephenson free kick saw Anderson slide towards goal but his effort hit the post. Crook then shot wide. In the 8th minute, Crook were down to 10 men when Wearmouth was sent off after he had bundled into Scott, after he had realised the ball, & elbowed him in the back of the head. 2 minutes later, & a Stephenson free kick into the box was blocked & cleared. Another Stan attack saw the Crook keeper collide with the advancing Burn & clear the ball. In 13 minutes, a joined-up Stan attack ended with a Hopper header being cleared. The Stan attacked again & eventually Hopper headed over at the end of a 4 man move. In 18 minutes, from a Stan corner, a Scott header was blocked. Although there was more Stan pressure, both teams were trying to attack. In 25 minutes, the advancing Stephenson crossed to Burn who couldn’t get his shot in & the ball was eventually cleared. Hornsby then sent the ball into the box & 1st Evans hit the post then Hopper has a shot cleared off the line. The Stan kept attacking although Crook won a corner in 36 minutes from which the ball was headed clear. In 39 minutes, Burn headed high towards the Crook far post, but the ball hit the crossbar. The move eventually resulted in a corner from which Stephenson shot across the Crook goal & the ball went out. In 42 minutes, Burn supplied Turnbull whose header went over the bar under pressure. Both teams were still trying to attack but the half ended 0-0.

Lashley replaced Scott at half time & 3 minutes into the 2nd half Burn shot just wide. The Stan had another 4 advances blocked before Corkhill & the Stan defence had to make their 1st clearance of the 2nd half. The Stan had another 5 attacks cleared before Crook had an attack of their own cleared in 62 minutes. In 63 minutes, there was a handball by a Crook player just outside their box. From the resulting free kick, in 64 minutes, Stephenson sent the ball over the wall & straight into the net for 1-0. What a goal! Crook did not give up though & in 70 minutes, from a free kick, Corkhill had to flick the ball out for a corner. From the corner, the ball was initially blocked in the 6-yard box then forced into the net through lots of legs for 1-1. The Stan put pressure back on Crook as they sought a winning goal, & a header from Anderson was blocked in 78 minutes. Corkhill then had to save as a Crook forward collided with him & he was awarded a foul. In 81 minutes, a long-range effort saw Corkhill block then catch the ball. 3 minutes later, & a long range effort at the other end by Stephenson was put over the bar by the stretching home keeper when the ball looked like going into the Crook net. It was a great shot followed by a great save. Hornsby then sent a ball into the Crook box which went high & over. The Stan kept attacking but were being blocked. Crook did manage to attack in 86 minutes, but they were halted by a great tackle by Turnbull. In 88 minutes, a long diagonal cross by Stephenson saw Lashley’s resulting effort under pressure go just over. The Stan kept pressurising & at the start of 5 minutes of added time, Doyle sent a ball into the box which saw Reid get up to head but the home keeper put the ball just over the bar. From the resulting Stephenson corner, Lashley headed just wide. The Stan kept attacking but could not get the crucial 2nd goal. The match ended in a similar fashion with Reid sliding into the 6-yard box but the ball was cleared for a corner from which Reid headed low but again the home keeper came to Crook’s rescue & cleared.

Thanks to some great saves & slow bye kicks, keeper Curran earned Crook a draw when the Stan should have taken all 3 points although they are still on target for a play off place. Next up for the Stan is a trip on Tuesday night to Whickham.

Kevin Mochrie

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Heaton Stannington vs West Allotment Celtic

After looking like they were going to eventually win a highly competitive match with a late goal, the Stan had to in the end settle for a draw as West Allotment Celtic got an even later goal. Although this local derby was full of action and entertainment, it looked like fans were going to witness the 1st 0-0 draw this season at Grounsell until the 2 late goals. There were 5 changes from last Wednesday’s win at Benfield with Corkhill, Turnbull, Shepherd, Slaughter & Hopper replacing Brass, Evans, Reid, Marriott & Lashley.

On a pleasant evening, WAC were 1st to show this was going to be a match with much attacking play when in 3 minutes they hit a shot just over the bar from just outside the 6-yard box after the initial ball into the box had been blocked. After a quieter period, the 1st Stan attack came in 8 minutes which resulted in a corner. From it, Turnbull shot just wide. WAC then went up the pitch & shot across the Stan goal with Corkhill getting down to put the ball out for a corner. From the corner, the ball was cleared in front of a packed goal line. The 15th minute saw the start of a couple of minutes of sustained pressure from the Stan. This included a shot by Hornsby being blocked & the rebound shot from Hopper was put just over the bar for a corner. From the corner, the ball was cleared & went out to Hopper on the edge of the box and his shot was deflected just over for another corner. In 18 minutes, Corkhill blocked a WAC shot. There was lots of action now from both teams with the ball being sent up and down the pitch. From the 33rd minute, there was a couple of minutes of mainly pressure from WAC including a shot that hit the side netting of the Stan goal. It was back to end-to-end action now & in 40 minutes a WAC shot was blocked with the rebound effort going just wide. In 41 minutes, Stephenson shot well wide. Soon after, he won the ball & a joined up Stan attack eventually saw the ball sent across the visitor’s goal but was missed by everyone. The half finished 0-0 but the Stan had been trying to attack while their defence had also dealt well with the threat from WAC’s pacey players.

The 2nd half started with a Stan effort being headed clear. In 48 minutes, a deflected ball to Hornsby resulted in him shooting over the visitor’s bar. It was all mainly pressure from the Stan now as they sought a possibly winning goal. In 53 minutes, a Stephenson free kick saw Hopper head the ball towards the net at the back post but the WAC keeper caught it. 2 minutes later & a Stan ball from a corner was parried away by the WAC keeper. The Stan kept attacking although the visitors were still potentially a threat. In 66 minutes, a joined-up attack ended with Anderson, who was working hard, shooting just over from the edge of the box. The Stan then shot wide followed by the WAC keeper getting down to save a long range effort. In 70 minutes, from a corner, Turnbull headed towards goal but the ball bounced of Hopper who was facing towards him. WAC then had a rare attack eventually shooting wide. It was then back to Stan pressure & in 75 minutes a Hopper shot from the edge of the box was deflected onto the post. Soon after, a WAC ball into the Stan box was headed clear. In 83 minutes, the Stan determination paid off when Hornsby sent a ball into the WAC box from the left & sub Lashley rose majestically to head it into the net for 1-0. What a header! In 87 minutes, a WAC ball into the Stan box was eventually put just wide for a corner. From the corner, the visitor’s headed the ball into the net for 1-1 on 88 minutes. There were still a few minutes for the Stan to get another goal & Hornsby sent a ball into the box for sub Sayer who headed just wide. The Stan kept the pressure on into added time but couldn’t get the crucial 2nd goal.

The 1st half of the match was a relatively even affair with both teams having chances to score. The 2nd half was more one sided with the Stan dominating until the 88th minute WAC equaliser and the Stan Army were disappointed that their team did not snatch a late victory. The draw moves the Stan up to 5th place. On Saturday the Stan are at home again when they host Crook Town.

Kevin Mochrie

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Heaton Stannington vs Redcar Athletic

Heaton Stannington were without the injured Carr, Hopper and Lamb, and Stephenson was not available, Stan in their previous seven NL 1 matches had conceded the first goal, and went on to win 3, draw 1 and lose the other three.

However they broke that bad pattern, getting an early goal, conceded an equaliser five minutes from half time but were still able to go to the changing rooms a goal up at the interval. The second half Stan were far more able to control the game and scored another goal and run out worthy winners, and rise up two places in the table. Warm applause at the end from most of the 361 attenders.

The match opened explosively with Stan scoring on 2 minutes, with a throw in from Kane Evans to Louis Anderson, back to Evans, then back to Anderson who played the ball inside for Andy Burn, just on the edge of the area, central, one touch to control before hitting a low shot into the bottom far corner. 1-0

Stan had a shout for a penalty three minutes later when Anderson was tackled in the area. Ref said play on.

Redcar responded with Mark Anderson having a low shot straight to Lewis Brass.

Jordan Lashley just failed to get on the end of a through ball, then Sean Reid hit a free kick over the bar.

Brass came to the rescue on 20 minutes as Curtis Round chased a ball into the area, but he came and caught the ball to deny the visitors any opportunity. Nine minutes later Brass came out of his area to head the ball away as Adam Boyes attacked, straight to Anderson who volleyed high over the bar.

Richie Slaughter was having a magisterial match, strong and resilient, leading his team in the battle. Alfie Marriott and Craig Scott were kept busy, and battled away strongly.

Scott headed behind to concede a corner as the Cleveland side were pushing for an equaliser.

On 35 minutes a good build up play, Anderson to Reid, with his goal bound shot pushed away for a corner,

A couple of minutes later the experienced Kevin Burgess brought down Lashley in the area. This time it was a penalty, with Burgess getting booked. Reid’s low spot kick was saved by Lee Roberts.

Redcar equalised on 40 minutes with the move starting on their left, just inside their own area by Boyes, he surged to the back post as Andersons shot was pushed away by Brass, with Boyes swooping to net from close range. 1-1

Two minutes added on when Reid fed Lashley to Anderson, with a defender intercepting but his pass went to Evans, who played a simple ball forward for Burns, one touch to set himself, then the ball went up and over Roberts. Home fans ecstatic. 2-1

HT 2-1

Stan did much better in the second half, contained and controlled Redcar’s threat. Stan were much hungrier to get into the Redcar box and score, whereas Brass was hardly troubled.

On 49 minutes Anderson to Reid to Lashley with his fierce shot finger tipped over the bar.

Brass made just one notable save in the second half, on 53 minutes with a cross to the back post for Jack Blackford to volley, ball stopped by keepers legs to concede a corner.

Just past the hour Burn to Anderson, his cross cut out, with Reid waiting, expectantly for that cross to get on scoring sheet.

Liam Doyle ran from his own half to the edge of the Redcar box, with a lovely pass to Reid, but his weak low shot was easily saved.

Danny Sayer replaced Lashley on 73 minutes, and was immediately in the action. A long throw from Jay Hornsby, headed forward by Reid to Sayer, with the ball to Burn whose wonderful low shot nestled in the bottom corner of the net. 3-1 A wonderful hat trick!

Five minutes of added on time, but no danger to Stan and they were warmly applauded at the final whistle.

To get a double over such a decent side speaks volumes of Stan’s determination to climb the table.

FT 3-1

Dean said after the match, “It was a real real decent job by every single player that took part, and thoroughly deserved. Everyone was excellent, you have be to beat a side like that. We were excellent second half, dominant, catching them on the break a lot, created a lot of chances.”

Stan are away on Wednesday night at Benfield, and then on Saturday welcome second placed Shildon to Grounsell Park.

Brian Pratt

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Heaton Stannington vs Whitley Bay

A healthy mid-week crowd of 413 witnessed only the Stan’s 3rd home match of 2024 as they sought revenge for last month’s unlucky 1-0 defeat at promotion rivals Whitley Bay. The match looked early on as if it would be a goalless stalemate although both teams eventually managed to score once but neither team seemed to reach their expected potential on the park compared to most previous recent encounters. The Stan worked hard, including through Slaughter & Hopper, & there was a classic equaliser from Nick ‘Predator’ Cassidy. There were 3 changes from Saturday’s defeat at Bishop Auckland with Marriott, Lashley & Sayer replacing Turnbull, Shepherd & Stephenson.

The match started with both teams trying to attack but they were wiping out each other’s threats up front & as a result the 1st clear effort wasn’t until 6 minutes when Bay shot wide. The Stan shot wide in 12 minutes, followed by the Bay doing the same, but neither team really threatened until 22 minutes. A Hornsby ball to Hopper on the edge of a busy Bay box saw his shot deflected over the bar for a corner which was eventually cleared. Unexpectantly, the visitors took the lead in 28 minutes when they had a shot blocked by Brass but a rebound shot from close range saw the ball forced into the net. The Stan didn’t sit back & in 29 minutes, after Hopper had won the ball & forced a corner, Lashley shot high & wide from outside the box. In 31 minutes, there was pressure from Bay as twice they shot across the Stan goal from a tight angle & both times the ball went just wide of the far post. From a resulting corner, a Bay player headed just wide. Although there was a quieter spell, in 35 minutes a joined up Stan attack ended with Sayer shooting wide. In 42 minutes, Hopper’s solo effort unluckily hit the post & this was followed by a bay counterattack which was stopped by Marriott. The half ended though with Whitley Bay leading 1-0.

The Stan started the 2nd half positively with Hopper in the 48th minute dribbling into the visitor’s box but shooting just over under pressure. In 53 minutes, a Stan free kick on the edge of the Bay box was cleared followed by Evans dealing well to stop the counter attack. Both teams were trying to attack but both defences were working well to prevent any real threats. In 65 minutes, the Stan were back on level terms when a ball from a Stan corner was cleared in front of goal & the ball went out of the box to Cassidy on the left who sent it back into the box over everyone & into the far top corner of the net. What a goal, especially given that he had only been on the pitch for 3 minutes. The Stan now started showing more confidence as they knew the match could be won & sub Doyle had a great opportunity in front of goal in 67 minutes but blasted the ball over the bar. There was a quieter 10 minutes as both teams still tried to attack but without making any real threats. The Stan had some sustained pressure in 79 minutes but the Bay keeper & his defence worked hard to deal with it. The last 7 minutes of normal time saw mainly pressure from the Stan as they sought a wining goal. In 86 minutes, Hopper entered into the box but, under pressure, he turned & shot just over. Into 4 minutes of added time & Whitley Bay finally attacked again but shot well over when they had a good opportunity in front of goal to score. In 91 minutes, Shepherd won the ball & passed to Lashley but he couldn’t supply the advancing Hopper. A minute later after a Bay advance, Hopper sent a long ball up to the advancing Lashley but he was wrongly deemed off side. Hopper then made a great run but couldn’t get a shot in & both teams had to settle for a draw.

Although either team could have snatched a victory, a draw seemed a fair result on a night with relatively limited chances for both teams. Next up is the NE6-NE7 derby as the Stan make the short journey to Sam’s Smith Park to take on Newcastle Benfield on Wednesday evening.

Kevin Mochrie

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