BY Stephen Burton
Next up for Blyth Spartans is a visit to the Green Energy Sports Ground to take on newly-promoted Northern Premier League East side Hebburn Town (kick-off 3pm).
Michael Nelson’s side head to South Tyneside on the back of an impressive win against League Two side Hartlepool United after goals from Jordan Hickey and JJ O’Donnell sealed a 2-1 win.
The Hornets are Spartans’ fifth opponents of pre-season having faced Middlesbrough under-23s, North Shields, South Shields and Pools so far.
Entry costs £5 for adults, £3 concessions, and £1 for U16s.
Hebburn are operating a cash turnstile.
Kevin Bolam’s Hebburn have had a mixed pre-season in terms of results with four defeats in six games, although some of those were against higher-level sides such as Gateshead and Carlisle United.
The last outing for Bolam’s side was a 1-1 draw at home to Sunderland under-23s on Wednesday night, with Jack Donaghy scoring a late equaliser.
WHAT WE’RE SAYING
Speaking after the win against Pools, Nelson is very pleased with Spartans’ pre-season progress. He said: “We’ve played against some good teams and had some really good performances.
“That’s three full-time outfits we’ve come up against now, and we’ve given a good account of ourselves every time.
“The lads are looking good, they’re taking everything on board that we’re asking them to do. By no means are we ready, but we’re building nicely and hopefully by August 14h we’ll be ready to go.”
Looking ahead to the clash on Saturday, the gaffer hinted he may have to make some changes: “We’ve got a couple of little niggles, so we’ll nurse them through and see how they are.
“But the depth of the squad seems quite good, all the lads that came on tonight had an impact.
“I have no issues if someone is injured and we have to put someone else in, I’m sure they’ll do a job for us.”
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
Central defender Jack Donaghy said on facing Spartans: “I’m looking forward to it
“It’s just another game, but it’ll be nice to test ourselves against opposition in a higher league again.
“They’ll have some good players, but the primary focus is to get minutes in the legs.
“We know where we stand – none of our opponents in pre-season have been poor, so we expect another good run out on Saturday.”
THE LAST TIME WE MET
Spartans’ last trip to Hebburn was in pre-season last August- and was one to forget.
A brace for Amar Purewal and a header from Robbie Spence sent the Hornets on their way to a comfortable 3-0 win.
Blyth Spartans: Trialist, Thackray, Elsdon, Trialist, Evans, Trialist, Trialist, Charlton, McKeown, Panos, Trialist. Subs used: Dale, Dart, Guy, Trialist.
Our media will provide live updates via Twitter.
The game will be filmed and edited for match highlights to be published on BSAFCTV.