River share spoils in eight-goal thriller

River Coquet...4 Newbiggin...4

Morpeth Sunday League, Division Two

RIVER Coquet played their last league game for a month with all of November being earmarked for cup fixtures.

This game can nearly always guarantee goals and entertainment and this week’s game was no different with eight goals shared evenly.

River came out the blocks the better of the two teams, with captain Andy Taylor (officially not the shortest in club) pulling the strings in midfield, but it was all in vain as Newbiggin scored the opening goal against the run of play after a ball was knocked over and beat the keeper. But it didn’t miss the River full-back as it ricocheted into the back of the net (0-1).

This setback didn’t stop River, who still kept plugging away, only for Newbiggin to score a further two goals (0-3).

Jordan Roper was fouled in the box late in the first half with Andy Taylor taking the penalty, placing it to the left of former River keeper Davison (1-3).

The home side went in at half-time two goals down, but definitely not beaten as they proved when they came out for the second half. Gary Taylor was substituted early on with a dead leg, making way for young Liam Ramsey, who had players falling over themselves at times with his skill on the ball.

Lance Burton scored through a crowd of players, with the ball nestling in the back of the net to take it to 2-3.

Newbiggin then decided to disrupt the River flow again as they scored a fourth goal (2-4).

In the past, this would have forced River’s heads down but they showed great passion and heart as pocket-rocket Ramsey weaved through the defence to bring the scores back to 4-3 with 20 minutes remaining, any amount of time for River to claim a win with the amount of shots they were firing at Newbiggin’s goal, with Ramsey alone piling a lot of pressure on.

Long-range efforts by Keen and Thompson were unlucky not to add to the scoresheet before another penalty was awarded to River and Taylor put it confidently to the same place as his earlier penalty to keep his 100 per cent penalty record intact.

With scores at 4-4, the drama wasn’t finished as Newbiggin had a goal disallowed for offside with the last kick off the game.

River: Straker, Robson, Thompson (Stewart), Burton, Whitfield, G Taylor (Ramsey), A Taylor (C), Brydon, R Gibson, Roper (Johnston), Keen. Unused subs: Brown, L Gibson. Man-of-the-match: L Burton. Referee: J Spink (Alnwick). Match sponsor: AC Joinery Ltd, Amble. Ball sponsor: Bengal Spice Tandoori. Amble man-of-the-match sponsor: The Schooner, Amble.

River host Felton on Sunday in the second round of the ES Johnson Challenge Cup, kick-off 10.30am at the Welfare.