NBFC 4 Penrith 1

The first home game of the second Tom Wade era at Newcastle Benfield commenced with a convincing and emphatic victory over rock bottom Penrith, with Scott McCarthy helping himself to a hat trick and being justly rewarded with the Man of the Match award. The striker his team mates call Shock opened the scoring in only the second minute. Finding himself unmarked in the penalty area, McCarthy dummied visiting keeper Thomas Fowler before rolling the ball into the net to give Benfield an early lead. In the same was as The Lions had built on a positive start in the previous home game against Newton Aycliffe, Benfield kept their foot firmly on the throttle and were all but home and hosed before the 20-minute mark had passed. That said, Penrith had almost grabbed a rapid equaliser on 8 minutes when the ball ran free for Adam Main, but he placed a sidefooted effort weakly wide of the far post with Andrew Grainger exposed.

Penrith would come to rue this missed opportunity. Firstly, Dennis Knight saw Fowler tip his stinging drive over the bar on 9 minutes. The second goal arrived on 13 minutes after Jake Orrell had been clumsily tripped in the box. Having missed at Whitley Bay last week and remembering Knight’s success from the spot in the last home game, Paul Brayson graciously stepped aside and saw Knight bury the spot kick beyond Fowler’s despairing dive. Almost straight from the restart, McCarthy grabbed his second and Benfield’s third, when he chested a precise cross from Rhys Evans past a static Fowler. McCarthy almost had his hat trick on 17 minutes, when he broke through the Penrith rearguard and crashed a drive against the outside of the post from 12 yards. The game settled down into a more sedate affair after this ferocious opening, while Benfield were forced into a reshuffle when Jake Orrell limped off to be replaced by Jordan Laidler, though The Lions almost made it 4-0 after 35 minutes, when skipper Mark Turnbull header a Brayson cross just over the bar. 


At half time, Benfield were forced into another change, with Dean Holmes coming on to slot in to an unfamiliar left back role, as James Martin was unable to continue after the break. Penrith should have scored on 47 minutes when their best player Shaun Gardener just failed to slide onto a low cross by Michael Yarker. Play switched to the other end and Fowler saved with his feet from Brayson, who had exchanged a delicious 1-2 with Knight. The fourth goal came on the hour and it was fitting that McCarthy completed his hat trick with the best finish of the game. Receiving the ball with his back to goal at the edge of the area, he took a touch to control it, then spun and fired home in one movement, with Fowler a bemused onlooker. Fowler gained a measure of revenge by preventing another McCarthy goal on 80 minutes by blocking the ball with his legs.


By this stage, Penrith were downhearted and dejected, but they didn’t give up. Gardener gained a consolation by starting and finishing a move with young sub Jack Brown. However, it was too little too late and Benfield felt comfortable to see the game out with 10 men, with Jordan Laidler limping off in the final five minutes after all substitutes had been used. 


Wades Words.

Click on the link to see Newcastle Benfield Managers view on Newcastle Benfield’s win


Match Report Ian Cusack


Paul Mcfeeley/Callum Boyle

Website Steve Boyle

Match coverage Luke Vinton.


Click on the above link to see the game highlights


Tom Wade View

Its great to be back on the touch line. I met the lads on Thursday and went over a few things, they look a good bunch of the players. It could not have been a harder task for us on Saturday against a side who hammered us 6-1 at home and last week beat the team who are favourites for the title 4-1 .We started well and played some good stuff but gave a way a sloppy penalty and a long range shot probably against the run of the play.
We had a chat about it and played with a bit more pace 2nd half and could easily have won the game .
We showed the old Benfield spirit in the 2nd half to get the point and looked a decent side .
Massive thanks for the support today it is much appreciated by the players and staff 👏
Tom Wade

Wading through the Bay

Whitley Bay 3

Newcastle Benfield 3

Attendance 455

The second Tom Wade era at Newcastle Benfield got off to a cracking start, with a pulsating, end-to-end encounter with Whitley Bay at Hillheads. The two sides went at it hammer and tongs from first whistle until last, producing an elating spectacle that will surely not be bettered throughout the whole of 2018/2019 for sheer entertainment, though the respective managers, Messrs Gowans and Wade would probably prefer their sides to play a little more conservatively in future.

Last week had seen Benfield adopt a 3-5-2 formation that proved highly successful against Newton Aycliffe, but on a horses for courses basis, this week The Lions set up in a 4-2-3-1 formation that, in the final analysis, proved just as effective as the week before’s line up. However, the fact Benfield didn’t return home with all three points had more to do with outrageous misfortune in front of the opposition goal and some seriously preventable mishaps near our own net. On a warm, though incredibly blustery day, Bay debutant keeper Chris Bannon must have thought he was in for an easy afternoon when The Seahorses took a 2-0 lead on 27 minutes that lasted until half time, but how Benfield didn’t go in at the break ahead by a distance was a travesty.

After an even opening, when Alex Nisbet tested Bannon with a low effort and Mark Turnbull showed commendable presence of mind to throw himself in front of a Jack Foalle effort, Bay took the lead from the penalty spot. Peter Glen-Ravenhill got goal side of James Martin and the chasing Benfield fullback was unable to put in a clean challenge, bringing the Whitley forward down in the area. Gavin Caines strolled up and nonchalantly rolled the ball home with Andrew Grainger going the wrong way. Five minutes later Benfield ought to have been level, when Dennis Knight sent in a beautiful cross right on the forehead of David Robinson. Sadly, his effort looped over the bar and, within the blink of an eye, it was 2-0. Out of nowhere Luke Salmon let fly from 25 yards and the ball swerved and dipped like a rapidly deflating balloon, completely deceiving Andrew Grainger. In fact, you could say, Salmon did him like a kipper.

Thankfully, Grainger was on his mettle seconds later when Olly Martin drove in from the left and fired in a testing effort that Grainger brilliantly palmed over. From then, Benfield took control. On the half hour, Turnbull weaved into the area but saw his effort blocked. Almost immediately Brayson seized the ball, clipped it over his shoulder, turned and fired an effort that Bannon saved with his legs. David Robinson was twice denied in 30 seconds; firstly, he hit the underside of the bar with a strong effort. The ball fell to Knight who had an effort charged down. Brayson rescued the attack and played a glorious ball to Robinson whose stylish flick rolled inches wide with Bannon, mouth agape, a mere bystander. Right on the break, Brayson hit the bar and the ball ran free for Glen-Ravenhill to fashion a counter attack that was only ended with a goal saving challenge by Joe Robson, meaning the home side went in at the break with a 2-0 lead.

Seconds after the restart, Benfield had a goal back. Brayson’s astute through ball set Jake Orrell free in the box and he finished with aplomb. Benfield continued to exercise control of the game, dictating the pace it was played at and driving a panicking Bay backwards. It was therefore no surprise when the visitors drew level. Almost inevitably Brayson got the goal, picking up a loose ball at the edge of the box and thrashing it past Bannon at his near post. Rhys Evans then almost put Benfield ahead with a speculative effort from distance, which Bannon did well to tip over. The debutant went from hero to villain when he swept Knight’s feet away, with little danger evident. However, he redeemed himself, by pushing Brayson’s spot kick onto the bar, with Orrell knocking the rebound wide. 

A minute later, Bay scored with their first attack of the second half. Substitute Kevin Carr collected a Grainger goal kick and tried a speculative effort, but the ball was blocked and fell to Foalle, who crashed it home. The young striker was the fulcrum of everything good the Seahorses produced and looks to be an awesome talent in the future. It took an instinctive save from Grainger to stop Foalle putting the game to bed on 86 minutes. Benfield would not lie down and accept defeat. Alex Nisbet’s scorching drive cleared the bar by inches and substitute Scott McCarthy seemed to have spurned the final chance when he put James Martin’s low cross over an unguarded net from 6 yards out. Thankfully, a point was still on offer. Pinball in the Whitley box saw Dean Holmes ignore his broken nose and bravely nod against the inside of the post, only for Turnbull to force the ball over the line for a thoroughly merited point.

Match Report Ian Cusack

Video footage Luke Vinton

(To be uploaded)


Apologies for the photos our normal photographer was unavailable.

Yesterday’s had his hands full and refused to share his food.

Brayson leads the Lions to Victory but is a Non runner for the Vacant management position.

Clink on the link to access the Goals from Saturday’s game


Following the midweek departure of manager Mark Convery, Newcastle Benfield were under the direction of striker Paul Brayson. The veteran marksman’s first decision was to change the formation to a 3-5-2, with Mark Turnbull, Craig Scott and Joe Robson at the back, Rhys Evans and Dale Pearson as wing backs, a central midfield trio of Alex Nisbet, Richy Slaughter and David Robinson, with Brayson and Dennis Knight up top. In goal, as ever, was Andrew Grainger, whose sole involvement in the game was to catch a rebounded effort off the top of the bar by Aycliffe’s substitute Marc Costello in the 77th minute. This probably gives you an indication as to the dominance enjoyed by a rejuvenated home side.

Like so many games this season, Benfield began like an express train. In the first minute, Brayson was set free by Dale Pearson. He stepped round the despairing lunge of keeper Daniel Scott but ended up slightly wide of the target and could only find the side netting. After 4 minutes, Scott used his legs to stop another Brayson effort, but eventually the home side took the lead on 10 minutes. Rhys Evans played a ball into Brayson’s feet in the area and, with his back to goal, he was brought down by a combination of keeper and defender, resulting in a spot kick. Brayson, limping slightly, passed the honour to Dennis Knight who confidently buried the ball in the bottom corner.

Less than 3 minutes later, it was 2-0. Lurking at the back post, Dennis Knight received the ball from a corner and fired in a thunderous effort that struck the underside of the bar, falling perfectly for Joe Robson to nod in for his first league goal for the club. Finally, Benfield had managed to turn early supremacy into tangible rewards with a pair of goals. In this opening period, the crowd were energised by seeing the old confidence and swagger returning to the Lions’ play as confidence and self-belief oozed through their veins. Dennis twice more almost scored before the 20-minute mark; a low drive from distance was fumbled round the post by Scott and a gorgeous move involving Evans, Brayson and Slaughter ended with the bearded wonder firing just wide.


The third goal was always coming, and it duly arrived on 33 minutes, when Paul Brayson crashed in a free kick from outside the box, that left keeper Scott clawing fresh air. It was almost 4 from a similar position minutes later, when Evans set up Brayson, only to see Scott get behind the ball on this occasion. The score at half time was a less than flattering 3-0 to Benfield and the good times were on their way back to Sam Smith’s Park. The fact the final score was 3-0 should not indicate that the second half was a kind of After the Lord Mayor’s Show anti-climax. Although the half began quietly, Benfield ramped up the pressure after the hour and if a spot kick had been awarded after Dale Pearson was barged over in the box, the final margin of victory could well have been extended. As it was, Brayson ensured the game was successfully managed to a conclusion, removing himself from the firing line and allowing McKenzie Heaney to showcase his stunning array of flicks and skills in an eye-catching late cameo. If this is the kind of trickery he is capable of on a regular basis, then his return to full fitness cannot come soon enough.

Having begun watching Newcastle Benfield full time at the start of the season (attended a number of games last season on a more casual basis), people could quite possibly start questioning whether I was an unlucky mascot, after what can only be described as a slow start to the season.

After clear signs of improvement over the 3 previous games, there was confidence that a much needed home victory could be secured on Saturday against a mid table Newton Aycliffe. Although when your side doesn’t win, it makes you miserable for a few days, I have still retained 100% excitement on a match day and have not been genuinely concerned I was an unlucky omen.

Having only been a face around the football club for a couple of months, the welcome I have received has simply been brilliant and therefore a couple of pre match pints offers a great opportunity to develop friendships further.

As things turned out, this was the Lions most dominant and straightforward victory of the season. It was clear from early on that our visitors lacked any real leaders and certainly this was not one of their best recent days from a footballing perspective, with no real cutting edge in the final third especially apparent.

After a Dennis Knight penalty (great to see his efforts now being rewarded with goals), a Joe Robson header (what a signing) and a customary goal from Paul Brayson before we had reached 35 minutes, the outcome was never going to be in any doubt. Unfortunately I missed 2 goals due to “bladder” issues and there were to be no further goals beyond this blistering first 35 minutes as Benfield coasted to a valuable and well deserved 3 points. Thank you to Luke for getting the highlights up quickly so I could catch up before the weekend was out!

After many years in non- league Football, I am really enjoying being a part of such a great club and can’t remember having this level of enthusiasm for such a long time. It is great to see others share this enthusiasm with the impressive Sam Smiths Sports ground regularly seeing new works completed behind the scenes.

With all areas of the club flourishing (including junior and reserve sections), there really hasn’t been a better time to support your local non league club or get involved in another way – lets hope the people of NE6 (and beyond) realise what they have on their door step.

Cheap entry, reasonable priced beer, a varied choice in the canteen for the kids and a good standard of Football, what more could you ask for?

Saturday coming (non league day), you have the opportunity of a trip to the seaside as the team head to Whitley Bay…..see you there!

Fans view Kev Larkham

Match Report Ian Cusack

Photos Callum Boyle

website Steve Boyle

Match Coverage Luke Vinton

Manager Vacancy

Newcastle Benfield Manager Mark Convery has today left the club by mutual agreement.

We would like to thank Mark for his services and wish him all the best for the Future.

The position of Manager at Newcastle Benfield is now vacant. Any person interested in the vacant position please get in touch via email


In order that the chairman and vice chairman can make contact.

Hornets 2 Lions 1

Hebburn Town 2

Newcastle Benfield 1


Benfield travelled to South Tyneside for a league game against Hebburn Town. Having almost gone out of existence two years ago, Hebburn are a club reborn. Last season Benfield came here for an FA Vase tie and the palpable buzz around Victoria Road West was indicative of momentum building. On that occasion Benfield strolled home 3-1 with plenty to spare, but this evening we found ourselves up against the side leading Northern League Division 1 and so a tough game was envisaged. Three changes were evident from Saturday’s draw with Ashington; Dale Pearson was injured, meaning Dean Holmes started on the left. On the right, Josh Scott was only fit enough for the bench, so Rhys Evans pushed forward, and captain Mark Turnbull switched to right back, with Craig Scott returning in the centre ofdefence. 

The visitors dominated the early stages of the game and the hosts struggled to deal with Benfield’s intensity by sporting means. Veteran Paul Chow was lucky to only see yellow for a studs-up challenge. From the resulting free kick, The Lions took the lead through a fantastic Dennis Knight strike after a half-cleared ball was rolled into his path by the astute Rhys Evans.

It was a magnificent goal, but the balance of play soon switched to the other end as Hebburn’s combination of muscular tackling and flowing football wrested the initiative away from Benfield.

Eager to get themselves back into this game, Hebburn began to throw themselves forward an on the stroke of 20 minutes, Dibb-Fuller fizzed a ball narrowly wide of the upright. Their efforts were rewarded in the 23rd minute when the Benfield defence failed to close down Storey, allowing the ex-South Shields defender space to fire the ball past the unsighted Andrew Grainger. The table-toppers were now in the ascendancy and before long, the Hornets took the lead for the first time. After an excellent run from Michael Richardson, former Team Northumbria winger Dibb-Fuller found space at the back post to slot home on the half hour. Soon after, Benfield, initially deservedly ahead and now deservedly behind, had a great opportunity to grab an equaliser when Rhys Evans threaded a ball down the right to David Robinson. His venomous first-time effort was unfortunately into the side netting and so Hebburn went into the break leading 2-1. 

Not wanting to allow the visitors an avenue back into the game, Hebburn came out of the blocks in the second half quickly and in the 51st minute, Richardson had a shot bobble wide of the left-hand post. Storey, in search of his second goal of the game, should have done better in the 70th minute when he fired the ball well over the Benfield crossbar from 20 yards out. With time running out, Benfield had a glorious chance to come away with a point, only for substitute Scott McCarthy’s rising volley to clear the bar with keeper Jennison stranded. It was the last chance and Hebburn played keep ball to successfully run the clock down and gain 3 points they scarcely deserved.  

Match report Ian Cusack

Website/photos Steve Boyle

Match coverage Luke Vinton

Next Game 👇

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