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Darlington v Blyth Spartans

Darlington 3 - 0 Blyth Spartans
03 Feb 2018 - 15:00

Quakers are now unbeaten in four games after a superb win over Blyth.

Quakers took the lead just before half time with a penalty by Stephen Thompson, then Reece Styche and David Syers finished off good moves for further goals after half time in possibly Quakers’ best ever performance of the season. The Darlo fans certainly appreciated the all out effort from the players and the football they produced at the end.

Quakers won a corner in the first minute, but as the ball came over, Reece Styche was pulled up for a foul on former Darlo keeper Peter Jameson, and in the second minute David Syers volleyed in a James Caton cross, but the ball had gone out of play.

Sean Reid of Blyth had the game’s first effort, a right foot shot from 25 yards that went a yard wide but Pears had it covered, and then former Darlo player Dale Hopson curled a wicked right foot effort inches wide of the same post from the edge of the box.

Terry Galbraith raced back and made an excellent tackle to take the ball off Dan Maguire who had latched on to a long ball.

Quakers nearly took the lead on 20 minutes. Joe Wheatley was fouled out on the Darlo left about 35 yards out, and he curled a free kick into the box for Josh Heaton to head just over the top.

Jameson then just managed to push an inswinging corner from Caton over the bar, and from the resultant corner Syers, off balance, headed over the top.

Quakers had another goal disallowed, this time for offside when Caton crossed from the left and Syers headed in.

Blyth threatened again on 39 minutes when a good move saw Michael Liddle pick the ball up on the left side of the box and hit a low left foot shot that Pears tipped around the post.

But Quakers struck a blow to Blyth when they scored in the second minute of stoppage time. Styche was tripped by Ryan Hutchinson when he went for a Syers pass inside the box, and the ref pointed to the spot, from where Stephen Thompson neatly tucked away the penalty for his 7th goal of the season and his fifth in three games.

Half time

Darlington 1 Blyth Spartans 0

Quakers should have made it 2-0 just after half time. Syers did well at full stretch to send Caton — who was wearing a protective mask — away up the left, and Caton crossed perfectly for Styche to head just over the bar as Jameson stayed on his line.

Blyth went close though when Hopson struck a low right foot shot that was going into the bottom corner until Pears just got a hand to the bal land pushed it away

But Quakers went up the other end and Thompson cut in from the right and fired just over the top — it was almost a carbon copy of his goal at Leamington last week.

Quakers went 2-0 up on 57 minutes. Caton got into the box on the left, ran to the bye line and pulled the ball back for Styche, standing ten yards out, to sidefoot into the bottom corner, his ninth goal since joining Quakers.

Wheatley nearly got a third on 69 minutes from a free kick 25 yards out, when he curled the ball inches over the top.

Quakers went 3-0 up on 73 minutes with a terrific goal. the outstanding Wheatley spread the ball out to Thompson on the right, and he crossed perfectly for Syers to race in and head past Jameson.

Blyth nearly pulled one back on 85 minutes, when Maguire fired across the face of goal and just past the far post.

But Quakers stayed in control to record their first clean sheet in four months, and to go 15th in the table.

Attendance 1526

Pears, Trotman, O’Hanlon, Turnbull, Heaton, Galbraith, Caton (sub Gillies 78), Wheatley, Styche (sub Saunders 82), Syers, Thompson (sub Scott 88)

Subs: Bancroft, Brown

Jameson, Atkinson, Liddle, Mullen (Sub Wrightson 60), Buddle, Hutchinson, Rivers (sub Rutherford 69), Reid, Maguire, Hopson, Dale

Subs: , MacDonald, Laidler, Watson