Consett’s hopes of making it to Wembley twice in one season were shattered when they lost to West Auckland Town in the FA Vase 3rd Round.
The Steelmen, who are still waiting to play last season’s final, were beaten 2-1 at Belle View Stadium, despite dominating the opening period.
They could have already been three up by the time Dale Pearson put them ahead in the 15th minute with his 16th goal of the season.
Pearson himself had the first chance of the game, collecting Jermaine Metz’s pass down the right, beating his man, cutting in, and flashing a left-footed shot across the face of goal.
A minute later Consett created a chance down the left flank, when Darren Holden’s pass set Ali Alshabeeb away, and he picked out Pearson, whose shot was blocked by West’s ex-Darlington defender Gary Brown.
On eight minutes a great run by Metz took him all the way to the byline and he cut the ball back for Alshabeeb, who blazed the chance over the bar.
When the breakthrough came it was another raid down the left, with Dale Pearson finishing from 12 yards after more great work by Holden.
But West turned the game on its head with two goals in six minutes. They levelled in the 17th minute through Consett old boy David Dowson, who escaped his marker to head home a left-wing cross.
And in the 23rd minute their captain Jamie Harwood powered home another header from Michael Hoganson’s corner to make it 2-1 to West.
In the 35th minute things got worse for Consett when they lost influential playmaker Luke Carr with a dislocated shoulder and fractured collarbone after a heavy challenge by wily centre-back Brown, who took the ball, the man, the lot. Some officials may have thought it merited at least a booking. This one didn’t even have a word.
West’s defending was physical, to say the least, with many challenges bordering on the illegal, so it was ironic that Alshabeeb was the first player shown a yellow card for a marginally late challenge on Brown.
Nick Allen joined him for a similarly innocuous tackle on Jordan Blinco. Somehow, it took a misplaced word to the referee from Evan Horwood on the stroke of half-time for a West player to have his name taken.
Just before the interval a great run and cut back by Metz set up sub Matty Cornish, but West’s debutant keeper Decklan Greenwood made a good save.
Half-time: Consett 1 West Auckland 2
Ten minutes into the second half the keeper – signed the day before the game from Brandon United – made an even better save from Pearson’s well-struck shot.
West showed they weren’t content with a one-goal lead when Michael Hoganson’s great ball down the left gave Dowson a chance just before the hour, and it took a good save from Hayes to deny his former teammate.
Cornish blazed a shot over the bar and Matty Slocombe had an effort saved by the keeper as Consett pressed for an equaliser, but midway through the half they found themselves a man temporarily down after Holden was sin-binned for something he said to an official.
West almost took advantage of their extra man, with Kyle Hayes making a fine save to deny Blinco. Slocombe then cleared off the line from Dowson’s header from a corner as Consett found themselves on the ropes, and the visitors also struck the bar with a free-kick.
Even after Holden returned to the action, Consett found themselves unable to find an equaliser against the entreched West defence, and after six minutes of added time it was the visitors who progressed to the last 32.
|19/12/2020||3:00 pm||FA Vase||2020-21|