Match report

Ashington 1 Newcastle Benfield 5
Tuesday 27th September 2016

​It was once said by ace goalscorer from the sixties Jimmy Greaves when he became a TV pundit that   football was a funny old game and so it proved this evening. Newcastle Benfield recently lost to Whitley Bay who I had seen four days previously absolutely demolished by a very good looking Ashington team who won 5-1 away from home.   With this in mind it was expected to be a very tough task for Newcastle Benfield to come away with any points at all never mind three.
The visitors were the quickest out of the blocks and in the 3rd minute a move involving Mark Turnbull and Paul Brayson saw them set up a chance for Dylan McEvoy to shoot at goal but his effort went wide of the mark. A minute later Ashington could have taken the lead when Moussa Bakhti misjudged a long pass down the wing allowing Lee McAndrew the chance to lob Benfield keeper Andrew Grainger but his effort went over the bar.

With nine minutes on the clock gone Benfield put together a well-constructed move involving Bakhti and McEvoy who set up Callum Uddgren but good defending with a well-timed challenge by Shaun Henderson stopped any shooting chance.  
At this stage of the match Benfield were bossing the game and moving the ball around in a confident manner, and in the 12th minute Moussa Bakhti who seemed to be in all of the attacking action for Benfield produced a great cross to Dylan McEvoy who shot just wide of the post.

With seventeen minutes gone Ashington got a corner taken by McAndrew, his excellent bullet cross flashed across the Benfield six yard box with no players from either side managing to get a touch on the ball, as it went out for a throw in on the other side of the pitch.
Recent signing Dylan McEvoy was proving to be an excellent player for Benfield and was scoring crucial goals from midfield taking a lot of pressure off striker Paul Brayson. He was in the action in the 20thminute bringing a good save out of Ashington keeper Conor Grant after a good interchange of passes between Cornish and Turnbull set him up.

It must have been a sighter as in the 24th minute DYLAN McEVOY gained possession just inside the Ashington half, with no one closing him down he advanced forward to hit a low 20 yard drive in to the net past a full stretch Ashington keeper Conor Grant making it 1-0 to Newcastle Benfield.

It didn’t take the hosts long to get an equaliser as in the 29th minute poor marking from a throw in allowed BEN SAMPSON the chance to shoot at goal , although he hit his shot into the ground it was enough to deceive Benfield keeper Grainger with the ball nestling in the net making it 1-1.  

Newcastle Benfield had given a debut to recent signing Ryu Williamson and he was proving to be a handful for the Ashington team with his pace and link up play with team mate Moussa Bakhti.
He was in the action in the 31st minute, after turning Ashington fullback Shaun Henderson inside out he played a pass into Brayson who in turn set up Matty Cornish to hit a good effort on goal well saved by Conor Grant.

With the way Benfield were controlling the game it looked like if there was another goal in the match it would go the way of the visitors.

So it proved as in the 32nd minute Benfield got a second goal, a corner out on the left was won by Benfield  central defender Stephen Tobin who headed back across goal to find PAUL BRAYSON who swivelled on the edge of the six yard box to volley the ball into the net making it 2-1 to Benfield. 

A corner taken out on the right in the 36th minute should have seen an equaliser for Ashington, a left wing corner gave David Dormand a free header on goal from six yards but he put it over the bar to his dismay.

Half time was fast approaching when Benfield struck a killer blow in the 44th minute, after terrific build up play involving four or five Benfield players the ball came to Paul Brayson who rolled the ball into the path of DYLAN McEVOY who drove the ball home in a manner very similar to his first goal making the score 3-1 to Benfield which it was at halftime.
Only eight minutes of the second half had elapsed when the next goal of the game occurred, again it    went to the visitors making it 4-1, this was a blow to the home team so soon after halftime. The goal came when man of the match Matty Cornish gained possession in the centre circle before releasing Benfield fullback Moussa Bakhti out on the left wing his centre was perfection allowing PAUL BRAYSON a free header from six yards effectively putting the game out of reach for an Ashington comeback.

It was the same combination again 59th minute and was the fourth goal in reverse, this time Brayson played Bakhti in, he then hit an explosive shot which crashed off the cross bar to the lingering MATTY CORNISH who gratefully accepted the rebound heading into an empty net making it 5-1.
Ashington seemed to be gifted a way back into the match in the 62nd minute when the linesman flagged for an offence by Tom McNamee in the penalty area, from the penalty the Benfield keeper Grainger produced a fantastic save from Kyle Downey pushing the ball away for a corner.
Ashington were now resigned to the defeat but did have a spell in the last ten minutes of the half when they might have got a goal back.

In the 81st minute a good move involving Ashington substitute Andrew Bulford saw him produce a good pass to fellow substitute Paul Antony but the Ex Benfield midfielder put his effort wide of the goal. A minute later centre forward David Dormand went close for the hosts when his long range effort went just wide of the goal.  Benfield now were in complete control but Ashington did have an effort on goal in the 84th minute, Ben Harmison took a free kick which went wide of the goal a poor effort.

In the 86th minute Ashington goalkeeper Conor Grant almost gifted Benfield a sixth goal, a ball was played back to him but as all keepers do they think they can be a centre forward, under pressure from substitute Meesha Kanda he kicked the ball against the Benfield player with the ball luckily going out of play wide of the goal.

Ashington had two good chances to get a goal back in the final couple of minutes, firstly ex Benfield mid fielder Shaun Bell drove to the by-line before pulling the ball back to Andrew Bulford but the prolific striker hit a weak shot easily saved by Benfield keeper Andrew Grainger.

To put the icing on the cake for Benfield and the keeper a second penalty was awarded for handball against Mark Turnbull, up stepped Ben Harmison to take the spot kick but Grainger also denied him with another fantastic save leaving the final score 5-1 to Newcastle Benfield.  This was an excellent all-round team performance with every one playing well.
MOM   MATTY CORNISH              
1) Grainger, 2) Turnbull, 3) Bakhti 4) McNamee 5) Tobin 6) Scorgie 7) Cornish 8) Uddgren 9) Brayson 10) McEvoy 11) Williamson
Substitutes;  12) Scott replaced Williamson 14 Kanda replaced Brayson 15 Duncan replaced Scorgie 16 Berhan 17 Trodd 


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