The lights went out on Consett’s bid to go top of the Northern League as they lost 2-1 at Ryhope Colliery Welfare. Manager Terry Mitchell made three changes to the side which had laboured to a draw against Thornaby, with Luke Carr and Jake Stafford returning in place of Dan Hawkins and Matty Slocombe. The other was enforced, after skipper Arjun Purewal failed a fitness test, which meant a start for young centre-back Simon Jakab.
The first 20 minutes saw lots of huffing and puffing from both teams, without anything tangible being created, and when a chance finally presented itself in the 21st minute, home midfielder Oli Hotchkiss hit a tame shot straight at the visiting keeper.
It took Consett 28 minutes to create a chance of their own, but Ali Alshabeeb scuffed his left-footed effort wide of the far post.
The turgid opening period came to life a few minutes later, when both sides had penalty appeals – one given and the other not.
Consett’s came in the 33rd minute, when Alshabeeb appeared to pushed over from behind by Ryhope captain Ben Riding as he chased a ball into the box. The referee gave nothing.
Two minutes later the home side were awarded a penalty when Calvin Smith fouled David Vincent, but keeper Mark Foden, on loan from Blyth Spartans, spared his team-mate’s blushes, diving low to his left to save Jack Devlin’s spot kick.
Six minutes before the break Consett had another half-chance, when Alshabeeb picked up possession and drove at the Ryhope defence, but his 25-yarder was rising all the way as it cleared the bar.
Half-time: Ryhope CW 0 Consett 0
It remained goalless at half-time, but Ryhope took the lead in the 49th minute when Riding forced the ball home from close range after the Consett defence failed to clear a free-kick.
Seven minutes later it should have been two when Matty Weirs’ low cross from the left found Devlin, who somehow lifted his shot over the bar from close range.
It was a big let-off for Consett, and within 60 seconds they were level. Carr – captain for the night in Purewal’s absence – set Alshabeeb clear, and the wide man made no mistake, rolling the ball under keeper James Winter for his first competitive goal for the club.
The next 20 minutes saw Consett do most of the attacking, without creating a clear-cut chance, but with 11 minutes to go the floodlights went off – apparently because a substituted player turned on the showers.
After a 15-minute wait the lights came back on, but Consett were left wishing they hadn’t, as Ryhope sub Michael Rae scored what turned out to be the winner in the 83rd minute.
He picked the ball up outside the box, cut inside his man, and unleashed an unstoppable shot into the top-right corner.
It was a goal worthy of winning any game, and although Consett tried everything to grab an equaliser, including sending big Ross Wilkinson up front, they suffered a first league defeat of the season, and can’t help think what might have been if the lights going out hadn’t halted their momentum.
MATCH REPORT & PICTURES: GARY WELFORD
RYHOPE CW: 1 James Winter, 2 Jack Walker, 3 Adam Cocks, 4 Jon Weirs, 5 Ben Riding (captain), 6 Chris Trewick, 7 David Vincent (sub Chris Wallace 70), 8 Oli Hotchkiss, 9 Jack Devlin (sub Michael Rae 60), 10 Matty Weirs, 11 Robbie Bird (sub Liam Robson 78). Subs not used: Jordan Harkess (GK), Nat Skidmore.
CONSETT: 1 Mark Foden, 2 Jermaine Metz, 3 Nick Allen, 4 Calvin Smith (sub Dan Hawkins 80), 5 Simon Jakab, 6 Ross Wilkinson, 7 Ali Alshabeeb, 8 Jake Stafford (sub Lewis McGeoch 86), 9 Andrei-Vasile Ardelean, 10 Luke Carr (captain), 11 Darren Holden (sub Joe Sloan 86). Subs not used: Alex Johnson, Matty Slocombe.
|20/08/2019||7:30 pm||Northern League Division One||2019-20|