Consett begin pre-season with a defeat to NPL Premier Division side Stockton Town

Consett began their pre-season preparations today with a 2-0 home defeat at the hands of a Stockton Town side who will be playing a division above them this season.

Tony Fawcett’s starting XI contained just five of the players who started the final game of last season, with another on the bench.

Four summer signings were given a first outing, with two more among the subs, and the squad contained five trialists. Six players were unavailable for a variety of reasons.

Stockton’s starting XI included one ex-Consett player, Josh Baggs, at left-back, and two others, Arjun Purewal and Michael Sweet, among their subs,

Consett had the first chance after nine minutes when Jake Jensen’s shot was saved at the expense of a corner by Nathan Harker after the midfielder played a neat one-two.

From the resulting corner Harker made another save, tipping the ball onto the crossbar as it threatened to drop straight in.

At the other end Kevin Hayes cut inside before firing over the bar, and Elliott Beddow had two headed chances, putting both just wide.

Half-time was reached with the score at 0-0, and both sides made a handful of changes for the second half,

The opening goal came in the 57th minute when an excellent cross from the left was headed in by Jack Spears.

Nine minutes later Spears headed home again from point-blank range, but this time he was flagged offside.

Consett then had their best spell of the game, and Ben Ramsey, who scored twice against Stockton on Easter Monday, curled a shot just wide from outside the box.

Ramsey was then denied twice in the space of a minute by Stockton’s trialist goalkeeper, who beat out two well-struck efforts.

But Stockton made it 2-0 in the 75th minute when Baggs’ superb diagonal long ball picked out the run of their trialist No 14, who finished past Consett’s trialist keeper.

  • Consett’s next game is on Tuesday 9 July when they host Crook Town for a 7.45pm KO at Belle View.

Gary Welford