Match report: Blyth Spartans 2-1 Southport

Blyth Spartans secured their place in the Vanarama National League North playoffs as they beat Southport 2-1 at Croft Park.

Robbie Dale put Spartans ahead after six minutes from the penalty spot after six minutes.

Matthew Platt got the visitors back on level terms after 55 minutes through a header.

Dale got his second of the game from the spot in the 70th minute.

The first chance of the game came Dan Maguire pulled back for Jarrett Rivers who was brought down by the Southport ‘keeper Daniel Hanford.

The captain managed to squeeze his penalty underneath Hanford’s body and into the bottom left corner.

The away side had a chance to level things up after 24 minutes as Dion Charles was one-on-one with Peter Jameson, but the Spartans ‘keeper made a great save with his legs to deny the striker.

Blyth had another scare after 34 minutes when Michael Liddle smashed his clearance off Jordan Watson which allowed Jordan Richards to fire a curling effort narrowly wide of Jameson’s post.

Spartans nearly doubled their lead on half time when Maguire crossed low for Kieran Green at the back post, but his sliding effort went agonisingly wide of the post.

Three minutes into the second half and Nathan Buddle saw his glancing header bounce off the bar and out for a goal kick after Rivers’ corner.

The sides were back on level terms in the 55th minute as Platt flicked on a free kick into the far corner which left Jameson with no chance.

Liam Davies tried his luck from 35-yards-out in the 60th minute which forced Jameson into another superb save as he tipped the ball over the bar.

Green attempted a superb overhead kick in the 69th minute but was denied after a stunning save by Hanford.

Liam Davies tripped Maguire in the box which allowed Dale to put Spartans back in the lead as he smashed home his second penalty of the game into the bottom left corner.

Charles forced Jameson into another smart save after 77 minutes, with the ‘keeper denying the number nine with his feet at his near post.

Jamie Holmes’ first act after being subbed on was to curl an effort past Hanford, but not quite beating the post as it cannoned back into play in the 85th minute.

Maguire’s first chance of the game came in the 88th minute as he was played clean through by Holmes but he did not know whether to either shoot or take it around the ‘keeper and ended up just running into Hanford.

Attendance: 1491

Posted by Aaron Hindhaugh