Consett’s new signings shone as the Steelmen won their latest friendly, beating Blyth Town 6-2 in their latest friendly at a sun-drenched Belle View Stadium.
Five of the goals against the Northern League newcomers, who stepped in a few days before the game after Horden CW pulled out, came from players who have been added to Terry Mitchell’s squad since the end of last season, with one from a trialist.
Consett got off to the best possible start, taking the lead after three minutes when Callum Guy picked up the ball 25 yards out and drilled it into the bottom corner to make it 1-0, pictured below.
But Blyth, who will be making their 2nd Division debut this season, responded well, equalising on seven minutes when Jack Fennell touched home a cross from the left.
Guy had a chance to double his tally on nine minutes, when he met Jermaine Metz’s low cross from the right first-time, but the Blyth keeper made a good save. Then a great pass by Calvin Smith picked out Stephen Callen, who volleyed wide.
Midway through the half, with temperatures reaching a sweltering 27C, there was the unusual sight of the referee halting play so the players and officials could have a much-needed drinks break.
The game had hardly had the chance to settle when Consett regained the lead on 27 minutes. Jake Orrell’s excellent ball saw Stephen Callen beat a defender and the keeper to the ball, pictured top. His effort came back off the post, but he followed it in to tap home from no more than a foot out.
Incredibly, within a minute Blyth had levelled again, when another move down the left saw Adam Johnson slide in to finish from close range at the second attempt.
Callen did well to get a pass from Orrell out from under his feet, only to shoot straight at the keeper, while at the other end Kyle Hayes made a good save with his legs from Blyth’s lanky No 9.
Consett took the lead for the third time on 34 minutes, when another Orrell pass was flicked on by Carl Lawson, and Callum Guy ran through to lob the keeper for his second of the game, the ball going in off the underside of the bar.
Consett were starting to create chances at will, and Orrell could have had two goals within a minute. First, the keeper denied him at the near post after a set-up by Guy, then, from the resulting corner, the keeper fingertipped his curling effort round the far post.
Orrell’s low cross from the byline was then a whisker away from being converted by the lively Callen, and Smith headed just over from Guy’s cross.
Half-time: Consett 3 Blyth Town 2
Consett made their usual raft of changes for the second half, including a first pre-season appearance for Luke Carr, plus a run-out for a trio of trialists.
In the 51st minute Consett were awarded a penalty after Drew Lake was sent tumbling in the box, but Blyth’s sub keeper read Carr’s kick well and saved down at his right-hand post.
The Steelmen didn’t have to wait long to extend their lead, however, as a minute later Charlie Exley played the ball in to Stephen Callen, who smashed home a great strike from the edge of the box to make it 4-2.
In the 56th minute Exley turned provider again with an excellent cross from the left to pick out the trialist striker, who fired home first time with his left foot.
On 62 minutes it was Callen’s turn to be the provider, when his clever lay-off set up Charlie Exley to fire home from 15 yards to make it 6-2.
Another water break midway through the half gave some fresh impetus to tiring legs, and the trialist striker (three times) and Dan Marriott went close to adding to Consett’s goal tally, but at the final whistle the score was 6-2.
Consett starting XI: 1 Kyle Hayes, 2 Jermaine Metz, 3 Darren Holden, 4 Matty Slocombe (captain), 5 Trialist 1, 6 Ross Wilkinson, 7 Jake Orrell, 8 Calvin Smith, 9 Stephen Callen, 10 Callum Guy, 11 Carl Lawson.
Consett 2nd half: 1 Trialist GK, 2 Harry Pilkington, 3 Charlie Exley, 4 Nick Allen, 5 Arjun Purewal (captain), 6 Dan Marriott, 7 Drew Lake (trialist), 8 Calvin Smith (sub Jake Orrell 67), 9 Stephen Callen (sub Carl Lawson 67), 10 Luke Carr, 11 Trialist 3.
Blyth Town: Not available.