Norton & Stockton Ancients 4 Alnwick Town 1
Northern League, Division Two
Alnwick Town manager Paul Yeadon bemoaned his side for conceding two goals on the stroke of half-time, which he believes changed the course of Saturday’s Division Two clash.
The St James’ Park side had taken the lead in the match, with Stephen Hogg netting for the Northumbrians after 20 minutes.
And it looked as though the black ‘n’ whites would reach the break with their noses in front.
But hosts Norton and Stockton Ancients scored twice in a matter of minutes to put them in the ascendancy at the interval and leave Yeadon having to tear up his half-time team talk.
“It knocked the stuffing out of us,” admitted Yeadon, who saw his side go further behind after the break.
“It is a bad time to concede. The first one came from a corner and the second came from a free-kick when we switched off.
“I think it was the turning point in the game to be honest.
“If you go into half-time winning, the lads’ heads are up but I think the lads’ heads went down after those two goals just before half-time.
“It wasn’t until after we went 3-1 down in the second-half that we started playing again.”
A Nicholson Martin brace, as well as a goal apiece from Gary Mitchell and Michael Jameson secured the three points for Ancients, who are now unbeaten in five Division Two matches.
But Yeadon was still able to take some positives away from the defeat, which was his side’s first away loss of the season.
He said: “We created a lot off chances and the lads did really well.
“I know 4-1 sounds like a battering, but Norton are a good side – they were relegated from Division One last season – and my lads held their own against them.
“I think maybe Norton’s greater experience showed in the end.”
Yeadon is hoping his side can bounce back on Saturday when they host Seaham Red Star, although he admits it will be a tough test against a decent side who are flying high in the division.
“We will work hard in training this week and take it into Saturday’s game.
“They are a good side with a lot of experience in their team and it will be another hard game. But I believe in the lads and in this Alnwick team.
“We have had a good start to the season ourselves and the lads are full of confidence and belief.”
The Seaham Red Star clash kicks off at 3pm.
Alnwick (v Norton & Stockton Ancients): D Mullen, D Lowes, T Macpherson (B Murray), L Armstrong, C Kidd, A Makin (P Murray), T Brown, K Hogg, S Hogg, J Jackson, J Lowes. Subs: T Truscott, D Hills.