Walkergate 1-3 Cullercoats Reserves
67. Tallen 12, 13, 50.
Mason 7, Hall 8, Watson 7, R.Patterson 7, Taylor 9, Connelly 7, Williamson 7, Cobley 7, Mcewan 7, Bromham 7, Tallen 8, Parker 8, Shipley 7.
Andy Tallen came out of retirement to fire in a hat trick which was enough to see off a spirited Walker side.
On a bitterly cold day and a rock hard pitch pretty Football was never going to be the order of the day as both sides struggled to get control of the ball. With only 13 available players we handed fill debuts to Elliot Taylor who slotted in seamlessly at centre half and Kian Parker who came off the bench early on and showed a lot of promise in midfield.
Right from the off we put Walkergate under pressure and a couple of early chances went begging as Tallen and Alex Mcewan always looked a threat. On 12 minutes Tallen showed what we miss when he raced clear (miles offside) as the flag stayed down he finished with an audacious chip over the home keeper. With Walkergate still coming to terms with the first goal, Tallen again broke free less than 60 seconds later to go round the home keeper (onside this time) and slot us further ahead. Walkergate did regain their composure but rarely troubled our back 4 who were well marshalled by Scott for the rest of the first half. Just minutes into the second half Tallen again broke free, via a long kick from Scott Mason, and finished neatly as the game looked done and dusted at 3-0. Further chances for Shipley, Tallen and Mcewan went begging as we continued to dominate play without extending the lead until Walker pulled a goal back on 67 minutes as we failed to clear (our only piece of slack defending all game). In truth Walkergate never looked like getting back in the game but it did make the last 20 more nervy than needed. A good 3 points on a difficult day in poor conditions.
Man of the Match: Elliot Tayor