By Stephen Burton
In association with:
ALAN McLEAN FCMA CGMA
Chartered Management Accountant
Vanarama National League North
Saturday, February 5th 2022
BLYTH SPARTANS 0-3 YORK CITY
Two quickfire first-half goals cost Blyth Spartans dear as they slipped to their first home defeat in three games against York City.
Clayton Donaldson put the visitors ahead on 26 minutes, before Jack McKay doubled York’s lead three minutes later.
Paddy McLaughlin sealed the three points for the Minstermen as he slotted past Mitchell on 68 minutes.
Blyth boss Terry Mitchell named three changes from the side that beat Morpeth Town in the Senior Cup in midweek, with Connor Thomson, Sean Reid and Robbie Dale returning to the starting line-up.
It was a quite opening quarter of an hour as Blyth dominated the ball but struggled to find the final ball.
The first chance fell the visitors as they enjoyed a spell of possession and Jack McKay headed a Scott Barrow cross narrowly wide of the far post.
Spartans did cause York problems as they repeatedly stole possession in dangerous areas but just could not find the final pass to create any chances.
The blustery conditions did play their part as both sides struggled with any lofted passes, JJ O’Donnell attempted to use them to his advantage as he fired a speculative effort from close to half-way but the ball floated comfortably in the arms of Peter Jameson.
The visitors took the lead after they worked some space in the Blyth box and Mitch Hancox’s dinked cross found Donaldson lurking at the back post where he made no mistake from six yards.
Thomson had a chance to pull Spartans level just a couple of minutes later as he latched onto a knockdown from Reid but he couldn’t get his foot round it and shot wide.
Blyth were made to pay just moments later as McKay recreated his earlier chance, this time he glanced the header just inside Alex Mitchell’s post to double the visitors’ lead.
Chances remained at a premium for Spartans as the half went on as they struggled to breakthrough an organised York side who were good value for their lead at the break.
Blyth had their first effort of the second-half just five minutes in after a well worked move found Reid in space on the edge of the box, but he couldn’t keep his effort down.
The visitors seemed happy to protect their lead as Spartans tried to find an opening but it was York who went closest, as Hancox latched onto a loose ball and fired wide from the edge of the box.
The same player had another effort a minute later as he stung the palms of Mitchell from long range.
Donaldson nearly grabbed his second as he nodded over Wilcox’s cross when he should’ve hit the target, as York tried to put the game beyond doubt.
The visitors then got a third on 70 minutes as McLoughlin fired home after the ball broke to him inside the box.
Substitute Lewis McNall looked to be through on goal as Blyth stole possession but he was denied by an excellent last-ditch tackle by York captain Matthew Brown.
McNall was at the centre of a late rally from Spartans as they entered the final 10 minutes, as a deep cross found Dale but his header hit the post.
Donaldon almost got York a late fourth goal as he latched onto a loose pass but was denied by Mitchell who did well to block.
Spartans struggled to find any way through as the visitors saw out a comfortable win.
Next Blyth travel to the International Stadium on to take on rivals Gateshead on Tuesday night.
Blyth Spartans | Mitchell, Evans, Liddle, Reid (McKeown 68’), Maguire (McNall 70’), O’Donnell ©, Dale, Deverdics, Lees, Thomson, Almond Subs not used | Buddle, Watson, Hickey
York City | Jameson, Duckworth, Barrow, Brown ©, McLaughlin, Dyson (Jervis 90’), Donaldson (Willoughby 90’), Kougun,, Wright, Hancox, McKay (Longdon 89’) Subs not used | Greaves, Campbell
Goals | Donaldson 26’, McKay 29’, McLoughlin 68’
Referee | Paul Cooper
Attendance | 1,250