stockton

Consett give their fans some festive cheer with an excellent win at second-placed Stockton

Consett brought their long winless run to an end today with an excellent 2-1 away win at high-flying Stockton Town.

The hosts were second in the table at the start of play, but Tony Fawcett’s Steelmen executed their game-plan perfectly to head home with three fully-deserved points.

It was his first win since taking over as manager, and the club’s first win in 14 games – the last coming in the 1-0 success at Lincoln United on 17 September, exactly 100 days ago.

Consett were without four players, including top scorer Zak Atkinson, but took the lead in the 13th minute against the run of play.

The ball was fed out wide to Charlie Exley on the left, and he swung in a superb cross for Scott Fenwick. The No 9 failed to get a touch under challenge from a defender, but the ball hit Stockton left-back Danny McWilliams on the side of the head, pictured below, and ended up in the net for an own goal.

stockton
The ball goes in off Stockton left-back Danny McWilliams to give Consett the lead. Pic: Gary Welford

The visitors had keeper Mark Foden to thank for preserving their lead in the 17th minute when he made a good diving save from Tom Portas.

But unfortunately the keeper was at fault for Stockton’s equaliser in the 32nd minute. He spilled the ball after collecting a cross in the six-yard box, and Stephen Thompson was on hand to fire home the loose ball.

Consett almost regained their lead right on half-time as centre-back Ben Milburn had an effort cleared off the line right, but it remained 1-1 at the break.

Stockton had dominated possession in the opening 45 minutes without creating too many chances, but the second half saw Consett much more on the front foot.

On 54 minutes a pinpoint cross from Jake Orrell picked out Fenwick, and the big striker was disappointed not to get his header on target.

Midway through the half Calvin Smith volleyed just wide after good work by sub Kieren Aplin, while Stockton dangerman Kevin Hayes went close at the other end with a fizzing drive.

But it was Consett who got what turned out to be the winner on 76 minutes when Fenwick flicked the ball on for Kieren Aplin to run onto and fire home for his fifth goal of the season, pictured below.

stockton
Kieren Aplin fires home the winner as Consett win 2-1 at Stockton. Pic: Gary Welford.

Stockton tried all they could to get on level terms again, but failed to trouble Foden again as Consett’s defence and midfield stood firm.

Consett had a chance to seal the points in added time when Fenwick, who led the line impressively all afternoon, sent Aplin clear again with a perfectly-weighted pass. But this time the midfielder missed the target as he tried to place his shot inside the post.

It mattered not, as the Steelmen held firm without conceding any further chances, to see out their first win at Stockton since 2018.

  • Full match report and more pictures to follow.

Gary Welford