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North Shields 3 Penrith AFC 1 (26/01/2019) – Robins tested in victory by strong Penrith side

The Robins get back to winning ways after goals from Jack Donnison, Gary Day and Ryan Carr saw them overcome Division One strugglers Penrith 3-1.

Efforts from Donnison and Day got the Robins off to a fast start, giving the hosts a 2-0 lead heading into the break.

Carr then added a third mid-way through the second half as the poor weather started to take its toll on the game.

And despite a consolation effort for Penrith from Grant Davidson, the Robins comfortably held on for all three points.

Before the crowd had the opportunity to settle, the Robins came very close to opening the scoring. After only one minute, Jordan Summerly was played through on goal but his effort was smartly blocked by visiting keeper Jonathon Jamieson.

Only one minute later, Paul Robinson spotted Jamieson off his line and went for a looping shot from the half way line, only to see the ball curl narrowly wide up the right-hand post.

The pressure wasn’t relenting and after six minutes, the Robins had their breakthrough when a Carr shot was deflected up into the air, with Donnison sprinting into the six-yard box to bundle the ball into the goal.

Having enjoyed their first victory of the season last weekend against Ashington, the Bonny Blues confidently came forwards in search of an equaliser. Striker Martyn Coleman had their first effort on target from the edge of the box, but he could only force Purvis into a comfortable save.

 The flow of the game was interrupted by two long stoppages, one for an injury to the visiting keeper and another for an injury to Robins midfielder Adam Forster. Thankfully, both were able to continue playing after receiving treatment.

After the restart, the Robins kept pushing forward in search of a second goal and in the 30th minute, Day was able to bully a Penrith defender off the ball before delicately passing the ball beyond the Penrith shot-stopper and into the back of the net.

Having gone two goals down, Penrith were still fighting tooth and nail to get something out of this game. Coleman was causing a persistent headache for the Robins defence and in the 34th minute, his shot was parried by Purvis before debutant Josh Nearney was able to clear the ball to safety.

With the half time break fast approaching, the Bonny Blues were pinning the hosts into their own penalty area and had a number of chances to pull a goal back. The best of which was in the 43rd minute when Sheldon Mossop had a spectacular bicycle kick which flew narrowly wide of the home goal.

The visitors started strongly in the second half and Mossop was again the cause of concern for the hosts. Having weaved his way through the Robins defence, he was left disappointed when he fired wide of the goal after pressure from the Robins keeper.

As the rain began to fall, both teams struggled to maintain control of the ball. It took until the 66th minute before the Robins had their first chance of the second half when Day, who was having his way with the Penrith back line, shot narrowly over the crossbar from the edge of the box.

However, three minutes later, the Robins were able to score their third goal when Jamieson spilled a strong Robinson cross right into the path of Carr, who made no mistake in firing the ball into the back of the net.

This score line was tough on the visitors as they had played well in this second half. They did get the goal they deserved in the 71st minute when captain Grant Davidson rose highest to head a freekick into the right-hand corner of the net.

The rain was really beginning to fall now as both sets of fans ran for cover. Day almost put a fine exclamation mark on his performance today but his shot from just inside the penalty area struck the crossbar in the 80th minute.

Still desperate to rescue a point from the jaws of defeat, the Bonny Blues were throwing everything they had at the Robins. They had a glorious chance at a second goal in the 87th minute when Coleman broke free down the wing, but his shot whizzed into the side netting.

With so many men forwards, the Robins almost capitalised with seconds left on the clock when Robinson tried his luck from distance once again. Whilst his effort was on target this time, Jamieson was able to pull off a strong save to deny the former Whitley Bay midfielder.

Final Score: North Shields 3 Penrith 1

Referee: David Pill

Attendance: 237

North Shields Starting Eleven: Greg Purvis, Jack Donnison, Jordan Summerly, Gary Ormston ©, Josh Nearney, Mark McManus, Sean McRoberts (Cam Cunningham 80), Adam Forster (David Hall 53), Gary Day, Ryan Carr (Jack Cooper 69), Paul Robinson

Yellow Cards: N/A

Unused Substitutes: Kevin Hughes, Craig Spooner

Penrith Starting Eleven: Jonathon Jamieson, Kyle May, Stuart Johnson (Steven Ainsworth 79), Grant Davidson ©, Matthew Moynan, Angelos Eleftheriaois, Connor Shields (Shaun Gardner 75), Adam Main, Martyn Coleman, Robbie Hebson, Sheldon Mossop

Yellow Cards: N/A

Unused Substitutes: Jack Brown, Cameron Harker