Town’s luck is out as they fall to fourth straight defeat in Division Two

Chester-le-Street 2 Alnwick Town 0

Ebac Northern League, Division Two

One goal in each half was enough for Chester-le-Street as they beat struggling Alnwick Town on Saturday.

Things started badly for a threadbare St James’ Park side, who were missing players through injury.

The hosts broke the deadlock after just four minutes when David Short scored from the penalty spot, following a poor challenge in the area.

Alnwick came back into the contest after the early set back and in truth were the better side for the remainder of the half.

Tony Brown went close for the visitors on nine minutes, rounding the keeper, but seeing his shot cleared off the line by the defence.

Brown had another effort shortly after, but his drive scraped the crossbar.

Alnwick had two more chances before the half-hour mark.

Brown’s shot went inches wide, before a Tom Vickers glancing header met the same fate.

Try as they might, the visitors were unable to find an equaliser before half-time.

A determined Alnwick side pushed on after the break.

In the 48th minute, Ben Keenan’s shot had the home keeper stranded, but his effort hit the post.

On 53 minutes, Brown saw another effort go just over the bar, before a Vickers shot went narrowly wide.

With 20 minutes to go, Chester-le-Street were coming back into the game.

And the hosts delivered the killer blow on 71 minutes when Matthew Morris headed in from close range from a corner.

Alnwick were unable to find a way back into the game and left County Durham with nothing.

The 2-0 loss was their fourth straight defeat and extended their winless streak to nine Northern League Division Two games.

To make matters worse, relegation rivals Esh Winning beat Thornaby 3-2 on Saturday to open a bigger gap over Alnwick.

Saturday’s results left Alnwick second from bottom and in the drop zone, but six adrift of Winning, who are currently safe and have a game in hand. Winning’s recent run of form, coupled with Alnwick’s poor run, has seen the Northumbrians fall back into the drop-zone.

Alnwick: Brooks, Makin, Convery (Dundas), Kidd (Tate), MacPherson, Patterson, Brown, Hogg, Vickers, Thompson, Keenan (Colley).