Consett are pleased to announce the signing of former Sunderland RCA striker Colin Larkin for the 2021-22 season.Continue reading “Consett add to their firepower by signing experienced striker”
Consett will begin the new season with a home game against Seaham Red Star on Saturday 31 July.Continue reading “Consett will kick off 2021-22 with a home game at Belle View”
Consett have today made their first close-season signing in the shape of Sunderland RCA forward Stephen Callen.Continue reading “Consett make striker Stephen Callen their first signing of the close season”
Dale Pearson’s goal was enough to secure a 1-0 win over a dogged Sunderland RCA side today at a blustery Belle View Stadium.
It was the big striker’s fifth goal in his last three games, and his 9th of the season, and lifted Consett to 4th in the Northern League 1st Division.
The first half was a tepid affair, ruined by a gusting wind, and it was 25 minutes before either side had a shot on target, with Kyle Hayes denying RCA striker Stephen Callen at his near post.
Good work by Matty Cornish set up Pearson two minutes later, only for RCA keeper Robbie Dean to make an excellent reaction save. From the resulting corner he saved again from Arjun Purewal’s header, but the referee gave a goal kick.
Right on half-time Matty Slocombe hit a fierce effort from 20 yards which looked goalbound, but a deflection carried it just wide.
The second half saw Consett kicking into the wind, and Pearson had a good chance just a couple of minutes in after beating the visitors’ offside trap, but fired wide.
On 61 minutes Hayes made a fine save from James Fairley, then Luke Carr fired inches wide after good work down the right by Jermaine Metz.
Pearson saw an effort deflected wide after a great pass by Darren Holden, and then RCA had their best spell of the game, with Hayes saving Anthony Callaghan’s free-kick and Ryan Leonard firing across the face of goal.
Cornish had an excellent chance in the 70th minute when he beat two men and brought another fine save out of Dean at his near post.
The winning goal came in the 74th minute, when Consett broke quickly and Carr’s pass sent Dale Pearson clear. This time he won the battle of wills with Dean, finishing from the edge of the box, pictured top.
Consett’s winning margin could have been greater, but Slocombe fired one chance into the side netting in the 85th minute, and another narrowly wide two minutes into added time.
When the final whistle went there was little doubt that the best team had won, and Consett moved to within two points of second-placed North Shields.
- Full match report and more pictures to follow.
Attacker Carl Lawson has become Consett’s second signing of the summer after he agreed to move to Belle View Stadium for the 2020-21 season.
The 25-year-old, who can play anywhere up front, has been at Sunderland RCA for the last two seasons.
He attended the Sunderland AFC Academy, and was a regular in the Premier Reserve League for the Black Cats’ U23s.
Since leaving the Stadium of Light he has played for Whitby Town and Guisborough Town, as well as RCA.
His signing follows that of attacking midfielder Lewis Green, who has joined the club from Thornaby.
Tonight should have seen us complete our away fixtures for this season with a visit to Sunderland RCA – the same opponents, who, by coincidence, we played on this date three years ago.
Consett went into the game on a sunny Saturday at Belle View Stadium full of optimism, still hoping for a top-six finish. But a jaded performance at the end of a 55-game rollercoaster of a campaign saw them beaten 5-0 at home by mid-table RCA.
Mark Eccles, ending his first full season as manager, was forced to make two changes to the starting XI which had beaten Penrith 4-0 on Easter Monday, with Arjun Purewal on international duty and Dan Hawkins unwell. Jordan Lavery came in at left-back, with Clark Kay moving into central defence, and Matty Slocombe returning in midfield.
RCA, who’d had an 11-day break, were looking to bounce back from successive defeats to Marske United and Jarrow Roofing, and looked brighter from the start. The only surprise was that it took them until the 31st minute to take the lead, when Ryan Noble’s corner from the right was met, unchallenged, by one-time Consett player Stephen Callen, who headed in from six yards for his 20th goal of the season.
Consett had two chances to level just before the break, but Craggs hit a 25-yard free-kick wide of the left-hand post, and Michael Sweet headed straight at Carmichael from Shaun Ryder’s cross, so half-time arrived with the visitors 1-0 up.
After a below-par first-half showing, Consett went straight on the attack at the beginning of the second, and a cross from the right reached Sullivan, whose shot was blocked for a corner. From the flag-kick the ball was headed just wide by Ryan McKinnon.
RCA were still a threat, however, and young keeper Ross Coombe made a double save to thwart Callen and John Butler. Just when Consett seemed to playing their way back into the game, disaster struck midway through the half as RCA doubled their lead.
Craig Hubbard picked the ball up in midfield and played it to Callen on the edge of the penalty area. The striker held the ball up before turning his marker and firing in a super shot into the bottom corner.
At 2-0 down, Consett brought on forward Jordan Nellis for defender Kay in a desperate attempt to change things, but on 72 minutes they gifted RCA a chance to wrap up the game when Callen put Butler clean through on goal, but Coombe stood up well to save, and the No 9’s follow-up effort was blocked and then cleared.
However, a third goal to clinch the game wasn’t far away. A long ball up to Callen was brought down with a delightful touch, and he again played in Butler, who this time made no mistake with a fine finish from the edge of the area.
With the match heading into stoppage time, RCA got a fourth goal as Consett appealed in vain for offside against Butler, who put the ball through the exposed Coombe’s legs.
In the third minute of added time the humiliation was complete as Butler was again put through on goal, only to be upended by Jake Stafford. Colin Larkin, RCA’s regular penalty taker, handed the ball to Butler, who coolly fired past Coombe to complete a 15-minute hat-trick.
When the final whistle went it was a dejected-looking Consett team who trooped off the field after their heaviest defeat of the season, but they were still applauded by their loyal fans, who’d enjoyed as many ups as downs.
The campaign had been derailed by the Steelmen’s failure to find a settled side – six different goalkeepers, nine different centre-backs, and of the 37 players who’d donned the shirt, 15 of them played 10 games or less.
They enjoyed FA Cup wins at Clitheroe and Harrogate RA, and took National League side Curzon Ashton to two games before a single-goal replay defeat. In the FA Vase they had thumped Hebburn, before bowing out at home to a Pickering Town side they really should have beaten.
In the league they were frustratingly inconsistent, only managing to win four games in a row once all season, though they did enjoy a 14-game unbeaten run (including cups) between the end of October and January. Disappointing though it was, this last-day defeat didn’t affect our final position, as Whitley Bay clinched 6th with a 4-1 win at Penrith, which meant Consett had to be content with 7th for a second successive season.
CONSETT: 1 Ross Coombe, 2 Adam Knowles (sub Jake Stafford 83), 3 Jordan Lavery, 4 Ryan McKinnon, 5 Clark Kay, 6 Shaun Ryder, 7 Lewis Teasdale, 8 Danny Craggs (captain), 9 Michael Sweet, 10 Luke Sullivan, 11 Matty Slocombe (sub Dan Hawkins 57). Subs not used: Chris Rogan, Mackenzie Milner.
SUNDERLAND RCA: 1 Jonathan Carmichael, 2 Ryan Noble, 3 Adam McGuinness, 4 Colin Larkin, 5 Greg Swansbury (captain), (sub Liam McBryde 83) 6 Craig Hubbard, 7 Karl Charlton, 8 James Armstrong (sub Brad Wilson 18), 9 John Butler, 10 Stephen Callen, 11 James Cassidy (sub Keiron Graham 88). Subs not used: Steven Stewart, Neil Bussey (GK).
A second-half comeback saw Consett win their final away game of the season 6-3 at Sunderland RCA on this day in 2015 – but they had to recover from a 2-0 half-time deficit to bring home the three points from Meadow Park.
Manager Colin Myers made four changes to the side which had beaten Penrith in midweek, with David Brown in at right-back for Joel Dixon, Jack Walker at centre-back in place of the suspended Steven Turnbull, Josh Gray out wide instead of Chris Moore, and, perhaps most surprisingly, Luke Sullivan as the lone frontman, with top scorer Michael Mackay starting on the bench. RCA included three ex-Steelmen, Luke Richardson at left-back, Kieran Megran in midfield, and Stephen Callen wide left.
Even though neither side had anything to play for, with the home side safe from relegation and Consett sitting ninth, the game started at a frentic pace, and the visitors – wearing a mix and match strip of blue shirts, red shorts and blue socks, to avoid a colours clash – could have been in front after three minutes, when Brown’s cross from the right was helped on by Sullivan to Matty Slocombe, whose shot was deflected by a defender and rolled weakly to the goalkeeper.
A minute later they were behind, with RCA, kicking down the slope, scoring with their first attack. John Jury’s crossfield ball to Callen saw the wide man catch Brown out of position, and he passed to Clayton Davis, who rounded exposed keeper Joe Longstaff to slot home.
Consett responded by creating a glut of chances, all of which they squandered. Gray fired a 25-yard free-kick into the wall, Danny Craggs tried an effort from a similar distance but was off-target, and some good interplay between Mark Eccles, Gray and Slocombe created another opening for Craggs, who fired over from the edge of the box.
Sullivan intercepted a defender’s attempted back header to his keeper, but his lob from an acute angle dropped over the bar. Slocombe then missed a glorious chance, side-footing over the bar when an equaliser looked certain after good work down the left by Gray.
It had been all Consett, so it was ironic that when the next goal came it was again RCA who scored it. Centre-back Ross Preston pumped the ball forward, it skimmed off Dan Madden’s head and fell into the path of Joe Hughes, who made no mistake from inside the penalty area.
The goal barely jolted Consett out of their rhythm, and they continued to dominate on a bumpy, drying-out pitch which was hardly conducive to their passing game. Sullivan hit a rising effort just over after Slocombe won the ball just outside the RCA box, and on 35 minutes the No 9 missed the best chance of the game.
Eccles ball down the flank to Craggs saw the midfielder unselfishly pull the ball back for Sullivan, who somehow shot wide from six yards with the goal at his mercy. The half ended with another two off-target attempts by Gray, first from a free-kick and then in open play, and Consett’s dominance had been such that they could scarcely believe they were two down, even if the home keeper hadn’t been required to make a serious save.
Whatever manager Colin Myers said in the changing rooms at half-time obviously worked, because his team tore out of the blocks at the start of the second half, and within three minutes they had a foothold back in the game, if a slightly fortuitous one.
They were awarded a debatable free-kick out on the right, Brown whipped it in, defender Preston met it with his head, only for the ball to cannon off the back of his teammate Lee Bythway for an own goal. Four minutes later the Steelmen were almost level when Craggs won the ball in midfield and quickly fed Slocombe, who shot just over the bar.
The visitors’ tails were up now, but it wasn’t all one-way traffic. On 55 minutes they were grateful to Longstaff for a fine save from Davis, after Megran and Stephen Bogie had opened up the defence. On 63 minutes the importance of the save was underlined when Consett levelled.
A corner was half-cleared to Slocombe on the edge of the box and his shot was superbly saved by keeper Jonathan Carmichael, but as a defender tried to hack the ball clear, it rebounded off Jack Walker, who was following in, to give him his first goal for the club.
RCA tried to respond, and Davis burst past two defenders before crossing to James Armstrong, whose header went inches over the bar.
Chris Moore fires in number five
Four minutes later Consett were ahead. Craggs released Sullivan down the right, and his cross-shot fell perfectly for Slocombe to tuck away from a few yards out, with RCA’s offside pleas falling on deaf ears.
The Steelmen were now pouring forward, and Eccles went close after a one-two with Gray, while Carmichael made another good save from Craggs RCA’s hearts must have dropped when Consett made their first substitution on 78 minutes, bringing on top scorer Mackay for Brown. A minute later it was 4-2, when Craggs’ corner fell to Gray, who made up for his earlier misses by burying the ball from six yards.
It was Gray’s last involvement, as he was replaced by Chris Moore, and with three minutes left the winger got himself on the scoresheet, cutting in and thumping a shot goalwards which was too hot for Carmichael to handle.
Though Mackay and Sullivan both followed in, and each tried to claim the goal, like any good striker, the ball had already crossed the line and the goal was Moore’s. Consett were still celebrating the goal when RCA got one back with a wonderful piece of opportunism from Bogie. The ball was tapped to him at the restart, and, noticing Longstaff off his line, he despatched the ball over his head to make it 5-3, with a goal so quick many people didn’t see it.
With the game entering added time, the last word fell to Mackay – who else – when he took Moore’s pass in his stride a couple of yards inside the box and smashed home an unstoppable shot to make the final score 6-3. It was a game to give the managers nightmares about some of the defending, but a goal-laden treat for any neutrals present.
Sunderland RCA: 1 Jonathan Carmichael, 2 John Jury (captain), 3 Luke Richardson, 4 Ross Preston, 5 Lee Bythway, 6 James Rowe (Lewis Wood 77), 7 Clayton Davis, 8 Kieran Megran, 9 Colin Larkin (James Armstrong 29), 10 Joe Hughes, 11 Stephen Callen (Stephen Bogie 46). Subs not used: Carl Morris, Michael Charlton.
Consett: 1 Joe Longstaff, 2 David Brown (Michael Mackay 78), 3 Mark Eccles, 4 Dan Madden (captain), 5 Jack Walker, 6 Calvin Smith, 7 Adam Nicholls, 8 Matty Slocombe, 9 Luke Sullivan, 10 Danny Craggs, 11 Josh Gray (Chris Moore 80). Subs not used: Dale Stones, Ben Cole.
Consett’s away game at Sunderland RCA, postponed yesterday due to the effects of Storm Dennis, has been swiftly rearranged by the Northern League.
It will now take place at Meadow Park on Wednesday 22 April, KO 7.30pm – and, for now at least, will be our final game of the season.
Barring any further postponements or rearrangements, it means we now have seven league games in the last three weeks of the season – five of them away from home.
Today’s scheduled Northern League game at Sunderland RCA has been postponed due to a waterlogged pitch at Meadow Park.
Recent rainfall meant the game was touch and go, but the arrival of Storm Dennis proved too much for the already-sodden surface, and the game is off. A new date has yet to be arranged.
Consett have this week strengthened their squad by re-signing two former players, Nathan Lawrence and Thomas McAloon.
Midfielder Nathan, pictured above, who can also provide cover at full-back, has rejoined from Bishop Auckland, where he went in the summer in search of more regular football.
The 22-year-old, who originally signed in October 2016 from Durham City, made the bench for the midweek game against Guisborough Town, and is hoping to add to his 75 games and five goals for the Steelmen.
Today, Thomas McAloon, who can play in midfield or up front, rejoined the club, which he left in March 2017, from Sunderland RCA.
Tom, 24, originally signed in February 2017 after being released by Middlesbrough, and played five games before moving to Bishop Auckland, Newton Aycliffe and then RCA.
A Consett lad, he is a Northern Ireland Under-17 international.