Match Preview: North Shields v Ryhope CW (26/02/20)

The Robins hope to beat the weather this Wednesday as they prepare to welcome Ryhope CW to the Daren Persson Stadium.

Originally scheduled for the end of last year, this match will be the first time Shields will have taken to the field since their 3-1 loss at the hands of NPL side Morpeth Town in the Senior Cup semi-final.

As for Ryhope, they haven’t played a competitive match of football for 18 days, with their last outing away against Billingham Town ending in a 2-0 victory, courtesy of goals from Bradley Hird and Robbie Bird.

But with weather conditions set to improve the rest of the week, both teams will no doubt be eager to resume their Northern League campaigns.

Currently, the Robins sit in fifth place in the Northern League Division One table, level on points with fourth-placed Consett, but having played two games less.

A win against Ryhope would see Shields jump up to fourth place, three points behind Shildon in third but having played one less game.

Our visitors, on the other hand, have enjoyed a mixed campaign so far and currently sit in 13th after playing 26 games. With a points cushion between themselves and Whitley Bay in 14th and Sunderland RCA in 12th, a win for the Colliery Welfare would see them remain where they are.

However, they have been boosted by the signing of striker Bradley Hird, who joined the club from Division One side Whitley Bay, where he was the club’s top scorer.

The Robins will be boosted by a recent signing of their own as fan-favourite Craig Spooner re-signed for the club earlier this week.

Having left the club in the summer for National League North side Blyth Spartans, the former Newcastle United midfielder spent time with Whitley Bay and West Auckland Town before making his long awaited return to the Daren Persson Stadium.

Whilst Spooner could be in line to make his second debut on Wednesday, there will be a question mark over the availability of Cam Cunningham, who appeared to go off with a leg injury against Morpeth.

North Shields and Ryhope CW have a history of facing each other already this season, with an own goal and a strike from Jon Weirs dumping the Robins out of the FA Vase at the first time of asking.

However, the last time the Colliery Welfare travelled to the Daren Persson Stadium, a solo Ryan Carr strike was enough to secure North Shields all three points.

Wednesday’s game is set to kick off at 7:30pm and will be refereed by Craig Dean.