FC Amble: 2, Ponteland: 5
Amble came off second-best to a very strong Ponteland side on a very crisp January morning. After an early morning pitch inspection, manager Barry Paton deemed the pitch playable and the match was on.
Ponteland started the brighter of the two teams and forced keeper T Hall into the first save of the match. Amble then created the next chance, with D Ramshaw just putting his shot wide, after being played in by J Ford. The first goal of the match went to Ponteland from the penalty spot, with a well struck shot giving T Hall no chance. This did not deter Amble, and they battled back and equalised after 19 minutes, when J Ford broke through the midfield and kept running for goal, before despatching the ball past the visiting goalkeeper (1-1). With halftime looming, Amble switched off and allowed Ponteland back into the lead with almost the last kick of the half (1-2).
Amble came out and had their best spell of the match after the break, where they controlled the midfield and went close through D Handyside. It was, however, Ponteland that got the next goal after a defensive error, which once again saw T Hall exposed and have no chance with a well taken finish (1-3) .With Ponteland thinking they had done enough, the youngsters from Amble refused to lie down, and, with grit and determination, got themselves back in to the match after great work from D Handyside set up J Ford to finish in style (2-3). Sensing they now had a chance, Amble went for broke and pushed forward, leaving themselves wide open at the back and were punished by a very strong Ponteland side, who took advantage and scored two quick goals to give them an unassailable 2-5 lead. Unperturbed, Amble continued to press, and diminutive striker D Ramshaw, who never stopped running all day, was denied a deserved goal when his shot came back off the post with the keeper well beaten.
Despite the defeat, Amble did not stop trying against a team that will be favourites to take the title and certainly did not disgrace themselves with a workmanlike display.
Spurreli’s man of the match – D Handyside.