BY Stephen Burton
In association with:
ALAN McLEAN FCMA CGMA
Chartered Management Accountant
Techflow Marine Senior Cup
Tuesday, February 1st 2022
MORPETH TOWN FC 0-1 BLYTH SPARTANS
Connor Thomson’s goal fired Blyth Spartans through to the semi-final of the Techflow Marine Senior Cup, at the expense of Morpeth Town.
Within moments of coming on, Thomson drilled in the only goal of the game on 68 minutes to set up a semi-final tie against Bedlington Terriers.
Terry Mitchell named four changes as Spartans looked to progress in their only remaining cup competition, with Dan Maguire, Lewis McNall, Corey McKeown, and Cameron Painter returning to the starting line-up.
Morpeth went close early on as Ben Ramsey fired in a wicked low cross that was almost converted by the onrushing Jack Foalle, before McNall fired a snapshot wide for Blyth moments later.
Former Spartan Connor Oliver went close on the 10 minute mark as he curled a free-kick narrowly wide of Alex Mitchell’s goal.
Spartans had most of the ball and fired numerous crosses into the Morpeth box, only to be denied by some excellent last ditch defending.
On 20 minutes the hosts almost took the lead as Ben Sayer curled a fine effort inches past the post after picking the ball up outside the box.
Spartans were immediately up the other end and almost took the lead themselves after an excellent dink into the box by McKeown found JJ O’Donnell, but Blyth’s top scorer couldn’t quite get his angles right as he tried to lob the bouncing ball over Dan Lowson.
The chances seemed to spur the game into life as moments later, Liam Henderson worked some space in the box and pulled a low shot wide.
The home side then had a brilliant chance to take the lead as Foalle floated in a dangerous deep cross that was met by the head of Jeff Henderson, but the Morpeth captain was denied by a superb stop by Mitchell.
Spartans struggled to create anything clear cut as the half drew to a close, although Michael Liddle attempted the audacious as he spied Lowson off his line, but his 30-yard chip didn’t threaten the goal.
On the stroke of half-time Foalle almost put Morpeth ahead as he burst into the box after latching on to a flick from Liam Henderson, but the winger’s shot flew past the far post.
Morpeth had the first chance of the second-half after just a couple of minutes as Liam Henderson volleyed a cross from Stephen Forster that was well tipped over by Mitchell.
As the hosts raced out of the blocks it seemed as if the second-half would continue in the same vain as the first, but in fact it took until the hour mark before there was another effort at goal.
That came from Spartans, as a well worked move found O’Donnell in the box, but his effort flew over Lowson’s goal.
A few minutes later Morpeth went close following a scramble in the box after a corner, but Ramsey saw his effort deflect past the post.
Then, just moments after coming on, Thomson fired Blyth in front as he collected a bouncing ball in the box and fired low into the bottom corner.
Ramsey wasted an excellent chance to pull the scores level as Sayer cut the ball back to the edge of the area, but the winger couldn’t keep his effort down.
Spartans looked to take the sting out of the game as the clock wore down, but McKeown went close with a long range effort that flew narrowly over.
Blyth stood firm in the final minutes to see out the win and put themselves one step closer to the final at St James’ Park.
Morpeth Town XI: Lowson, Forster, Phillips (Finnigan 80’), Sayer (Turner 80’), J. Henderson (c), Morris, Foalle, Noble, L. Henderson, Oliver, Ramsey (Taylor 77’)
Blyth Spartans XI: Mitchell, Evans, Liddle, Maguire (Dale 89’), O’Donnell (c), McNall (Thomson 67’), McKeown, Painter (Reid 67’), Deverdics, Lees, Almond
Subs not used: Watson, Hickey
Scorers: Thomson 68’
Referee: Darren Williams