Blyth Spartans score twice but it's not enough for all three points against Banbury United

Experienced striker Jordan Cook has signed a permanent deal with Blyth. Picture: Paul ScottExperienced striker Jordan Cook has signed a permanent deal with Blyth. Picture: Paul Scott
Experienced striker Jordan Cook has signed a permanent deal with Blyth. Picture: Paul Scott
Blyth Spartans played their first home game of 2024 when they faced Banbury United on Saturday.

Games between the two sides tend to end in a draw, and this one was no exception.

Blyth made the worst possible start, going behind after a minute. Following his brace in his first game for the club, young loanee striker Harry Gardiner got the equaliser just before half time. Rhys Evans then scored a rare goal to give Blyth the lead after 72 minutes, but Banbury scored their second minutes later to leave Croft Park with a share of the points.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

New signing Jordan Cook was on the bench for Blyth, replacing Nicky Deverdics during the second half, and Dan Langley continued in goal after extending his loan deal. Harry Arnison, Alex Mitchell, Joe Oliver and JJ O’Donnell were unavailable due to injury.

Will McGowan almost grabbed an immediate equaliser after Ethan Fitzhugh’s opener, his header hitting the post, as both sides created chances.

Langley made a point-blank save to prevent Banbury going further ahead before the visiting keeper, who had a good game, made an excellent save from Gardiner.

Ken Charles had a couple of chances for Banbury, Finn Cousin-Dawson denying him with a block before Gardiner pounced to score after the keeper had saved McGowan’s effort.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Evans’ superb strike gave Blyth the lead briefly before Charles finally got his goal.

There were further chances for both sides, with both keepers making important saves.

Manager Jon Shaw said after the match: “We’ve created enough chances to win two games and when you look at the two goals we’ve conceded, realistically, they’re probably a little bit of our own doing.”

Speaking about new signing Cook, who has had a torrid time with injuries, he said: “He’s the right personality for this team and this club. He wants to play, all he wants to do is get back on the pitch.

“I think we’ve got a helluva a player on our hands.”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Blyth travel to Gloucester City tomorrow. The hosts are struggling near the bottom of the table and have not won any of their last five games, going down 3-0 against Chester at the weekend.

Monday’s night’s Newcastle Flooring Northumberland Senior Cup quarter-final against Newcastle Benfield was postponed due to a frozen pitch.