By Ben Lightfoot
National League North action returns as Blyth Spartans travel to Blackwell Meadows to face Darlington on Saturday, March 5th.
The Spartans last game out was in the Northumberland Senior Cup semi-final, where Blyth defeated Bedlington Terriers 1-0, thanks to an early goal from Sean Reid.
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There are still numerous injury concerns in the Blyth squad, with Alex Mitchell, Rhys Evans, Michael Liddle and Connor Thomson all doubtful for Saturday’s match.
Darlington currently sits 12th in the National League North table having won 10 games of the 29 played so far this season.
The Quakers are currently unbeaten in their last four league games, having won three of them. However, this comes after a poor spell of form as prior to the unbeaten run they went four games without a win.
Manager Alun Armstorng saw his side beat Chorley FC 3-0 last time out with Tyrone O’Neill, Will Hatfield and former-Spartan Jarrett Rivers getting on the scoresheet.
WHAT WE’RE SAYING
Speaking after the midweek win against Bedlington, manager Terry Mitchell said: “We’ve rested a couple of the lads tonight to make sure they’re fresh for the Darlington game which is important. I said to the lads we need to park tonight’s result up, we’ve got 15 games to get as many points as we can to get up the league.”
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
Darlington boss Alun Armstrong said: “Second-half was one of the best performances we’ve produced, The last four games have been fantastic and we’ve just got to carry this on. The lads have shown the levels today of why we should be up there, and there’s no reason why we shouldn’t be.”
LAST TIME WE MET
The last time we met was in September at Croft Park where the game finished 2-2 as JJ O’Donnell and Lewis McNall scored for Blyth.
Blyth have only managed to beat Darlington twice in the last 12 games, once in 2017 in the National League North and in a FA Cup qualifier in September 2014.
The last time Blyth faced Darlington at Blackwell Meadows, the Spartans saw a 6-0 defeat in December 2020.
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