Consett showed both sides of their Jekyll and Hyde character in a game against Whitley Bay in this day back in 2008.
The Steelmen eventually ran out comfortable 4-1 winners against a Seasiders side who would end the season by scuppering Consett’s title hopes – read more about that here – and recording the first of three consecutive FA Vase triumphs.
When this game took place at Belle Vue Park on Saturday 8 November, Consett were 2nd in the skilltrainingltd Northern League Division One, having been knocked off the top after losing at Chester-le-Street the week before. Whitley Bay were 11th.
Even within this 90 minutes, Consett’s following were treated to a bit of everything, as for the first half an hour they were a distant second best to their visitors. However, for the rest of the game the performance was as good as the previous week’s defeat at Chester Moor Park had been poor.
Whitley had by far the better of the opening exchanges, threatening as early as the sixth minute when Paul Chow’s low shot forced Consett keeper Paul Gilmore into a good save. Gilmore saved the Steelmen again four minutes later, coming out save with his feet from Bruce Hogg who was left clean through when Carl Piecha missed an attempted clearance.
Adam Emson had shot wide under pressure in Consett’s only serious attack of the first third of the game, but the Steelmen were soon under pressure again, with David Coulson – who would go on to have a brief spell at the club a few years later – heading a left-wing corner over the bar.
The inevitable breakthrough came for the Bay on 25 minutes. After Chow saw a shot blocked and loop up into the air, Chris Fawcett held off his marker to lay the ball off to Bruce Hogg, who hammered it into roof of the net.
It was almost 2-0 a couple of minutes later when Paul Robinson’s ball over the top released Chow, but Gilmore came out smartly to tackle the ever-dangerous striker.
Completely against the run of play, Consett found themselves level in the 36th minute. David Pounder’s right-wing corner dropped in the six yard box and after a goalmouth scramble Carl Piecha poked the ball home to make it 1-1.
The goal acted like an off switch for Whitley, who were simply never in the game thereafter. Andy Cuthbertson sent in a fine cross which Steven Johnson headed at Bay keeper Terry Burke, and then two minutes before half-time Consett took the lead. Jonjo Dickman won an important challenge in the Bay penalty area and the ball broke kindly to Emson, who fired home from eight yards.
Emson should have added another on the stroke of half time when he skinned Darren Timmons and bore down on goal, but Burke stopped Emmo’s effort with his legs.
Half-time: Consett 2 Whitley Bay 1
Burke was much the busier of the two keepers in the second half but could only watch thankfully as Emson’s glancing header from Pounder’s wicked inswinging corner flashed wide.
The Steelmen had a scare just before the hour mark when a right-wing corner was only half cleared as far as Chris Fawcett, whose volley arrived at an awkward height, forcing Gilmore to somehow fumble the ball round the post.
Consett spent much of their time soaking up pressure from their visitors and then hitting them with dangerous attacks, and one such situation midway through the second half resulted in Emson and Johnson up against just one defender, however the attack ended with Johnson shooting harmlessly at Burke.
Another lethal Pounder inswinger almost found the net directly, but Burke tipped it over the bar. Two minutes later though, Consett’s third finally arrived as a result of another counter-attack.
Johnson collected the ball then sent an excellent defence-splitting pass through to the unmarked Emson, who took his chance first time and make no mistake.
This stirred Bay out of their slumbers and on 77 minutes Chris Moore – who would later play for and manage Consett – embarked on a brilliant run past five defenders, only to see Gilmore cut out his cross. Five minutes later substitute Lee Kerr fired in a shot, but Chow deflected it over the bar from in front of goal.
Consett added their fourth in the last minute of normal time. Whitley threw everyone up for a corner, but Emson’s clearance set Johnson on a quick breakaway, and despite being on his own he beat a defender and let fly with a shot that had enough pace to cross the line despite Burke getting both hands to the ball.
There was still time for Bay’s Fawcett and Consett’s Johnson to be denied in one on ones, but there was no further scoring and the Steelmen stormed back to the top of the Northern League with this impressive win.
Full-time: Consett 4 Whitley Bay 1
Consett: 1 Paul Gilmore, 2 Karl Baston, 3 Michael Coulthard, 4 Jonjo Dickman, 5 Carl Piecha, 6 Craig Robson, 7 Chris Scott (sub David Scorer 84), 8 Andrew Cuthbertson, 9 Adam Emson, 10 Steven Johnson, 11 David Pounder. Subs not used: Paul Curry, James Platten, Carl Heiniger, Mattie Moffat.
Whitley Bay: 1 Terry Burke, 2 Darren Timmons, 3 Chris Reid (sub Leon Ryan 46), 4 Craig McFarlane, 5 David Coulson, 6 Bruce Hogg (sub Lee Kerr 60), 7 Chris Moore, 8 Damon Robson, 9 Chris Fawcett, 10 Paul Chow, 11 Paul Robinson (sub Mark Taylor 48). Subs not used: Phil Bell, Darren Reay.