Saturday 29th December

Ebac Northern League Division One

Whitley Bay 2 v Newton Aycliffe 2

Newton Aycliffe travelled to Whitley Bay and came back with a point after a 2-2 draw.

The home side started the brighter of the two sides and went close in the first minute when Alan Harrison blocked a shot on the line. Aycliffe had another let off on the quarter hour when a shot was deflected and just missed the goal. Aycliffe suffered a blow three minutes later when Ben Wood picked up an injury and had to go off, to be replaced by Jermaine Metz.

Ali Alshabeed made a good run for Aycliffe and crossed to Vincent Gash, who got his shot away, only for Whitley Bay keeper Flynn to pull off a sharp save. Three minutes before the break 16 year old Aycliffe keeper Brad Young, deputising for the injured James Winter, made a good stop, pushing a shot onto the post and out for a corner. Right on half time, Aycliffe suffered another injury when Shaun Hudson was the victim of a bad tackle and had to go off, being replaced by Stu Thompson.

Whitley Bay got the breakthrough six minutes into the second half. McFarlane made a good run down the right, and found Ardelean in the penalty box and he slotted home. Aycliffe came into the game more, and started to create more chances, with Gash and Alshabeeb going close.

They got their reward on 73 minutes when man-of-the-match Kurt Matthews headed in a free-kick for the equaliser. Three minutes later he scored his and Aycliffe’s second goal. Flynn denied Metz, but Daniel Wright was quick to pick up the rebound and cross for Matthews to volley home. The lead only lasted six minutes; Aycliffe conceded a penalty and Martin stepped up and converted the penalty for 2-2. Both sides went for a winner, but it stayed all-square.

Aycliffe host Stockton Town on Saturday 5 January & then in a changed fixture travel to Bishop Auckland on Wednesday 9 January.

Photo: Aycliffe goalscorer Kurt Matthews