Consett remain unbeaten in four league and cup games this season after a hard-fought 0-0 draw against nearest neighbours Dunston tonight.
The Steelmen had lost their last four visits to the UTS Stadium, but could perhaps count themselves unlucky not to have won against opponents who, like themselves, had three straight wins to their name.
There were lots of old boys lining up against their former clubs, with Dan Staples, Michael Pearson, Luke Carr and Dale Pearson starting for Dunston, plus Jack Elliott on the bench, and James Anderson, Dan Capewell and Calvin Smith in the Consett ranks.
With regular skipper Matty Slocombe rested, centre-back Ben Milburn, pictured top, had the honour of leading the team out as captain for the first time.
It was one of the old boys who had the first chance on nine minutes, when a defensive mix-up let in Carr, but Arjun Purewal got back to clear off the line.
On 18 minutes Consett went close when Jake Orrell’s ball found Smith, and his cut-back looked to have set up the lively Wil Shaw for the opening goal, but he was denied by some excellent last-ditch defending by Jude Swailes.
The game exploded in the 21st minute when Dunston defender Chris McDonald was shown a straight red card, pictured below, for a high two-footed lunge at Shaw.
The No 3 was clearly riled after not being awarded a decision against Zak Atkinson moments earlier, but the challenge was a bad one and Shaw was lucky to escape serious injury.
With Dunston reduced to 10 men, Consett were enjoying lots of possession, and Jack Gibbons went on a mazy run which ended with him shooting wide from 20 yards.
On 35 minutes Consett had a big chance when their high press caught Dunston trying to play out from their own box. Atkinson won possession and fed Kaleb Young, who skewed his effort well wide, pictured below.
Dunston changed their set-up at half-time, and took the game to their visitors, forcing them on to the back foot, without really creating much in terms of clear-cut chances.
The nearest they came to scoring was in the 51st minute, when Capewell sliced a clearance across the face of his own goal as he tried to clear Robinson’s cross.
Consett’s best chance of the game came in the 81st minute when Shaw hit a fine opportunist strike from 25 yards, which Staples did well to tip over the crossbar for a corner.
Despite five minutes of added time, neither side could find a winner, and both remain unbeaten this season after taking a point apiece.
- Full match report, picture gallery and manager interview to follow.