Carney and Dawson hand over the reins at Durham City

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AUSTIN Carney and Stewart Dawson have relinquished ownership of Ebac Northern League side Durham City and the new owner is expected to be announced in the next 48 hours.

Last night, Carney confirmed he has stood down and claimed exciting times lie ahead for the Citizens.

“Stewart and I have sold the club which is debt-free. There is a good manager in place in Adam Furness, who has worked with a limited budget and I know the new owner has plans to take the club forward,” said Carney.

City, who are seventh-top in the Ebac Northern League First Division, next play against Crook Town at New Ferens Park on Saturday.

Tonight, there are three ties in the Second Round of the Ernest Armstrong Memorial Cup. Willington host Darlington RA at Hall Lane unable to call upon Stephen Howe (knee) and Corey Nicholson (groin). David Moffat definitely returns and Lee Newby is likely to start in the defence.

Esh Winning face a stern test at North Shields who have won their last eight Second Division games to open up a seven-points lead at the top.

Heaton Stannington’s home tie has been switched to Brandon United because the floodlights, currently being installed, are not yet ready but they are expected to be operational for the first time in Saturday’s fixture with Chester le Street.

Spennymoor Town are fifth going into their Division One game at Guisborough Town. Victory will lift Jason Ainsley’s side into fourth place.

Shildon have the opportunity to regain pole position but could find it difficult at home to Dunston UTS. The South West Durham side are just two points behind leaders Celtic Nation, with a game in hand.

Morpeth Town will aim to continue their climb away from the relegation zone by making home advantage count against Crook Town while a close result is anticipated when mid-table teams Newton Aycliffe and Marske United lock horns. Aycliffe are one place and a point ahead of the Seasiders who have four games in hand on tonight’s opponents.

H Bedlington Terriers, who are just outside the relegation zone, produced one of the shock results of the season when they held championship challengers West Auckland Town to a draw in last night’s Ebac Northern League First Division game.

When the home side took the lead in the very first minute, another defeat for the Northumbrians was on the cards but a battling performance was rewarded with an equaliser after an hour.

A penetrating run by John Campbell gave Steven Richardson a chance at the far post and he made no mistake heading into the roof of the net past goalkeeper Shaun McCafferty.

Unlike in some games this season, Bedlington didn’t wilt and when they were awarded a free kick just outside the box, Paul King beat the wall and keeper Jordan Nixon with a rising shot into the top corner.

The outstanding McCafferty made several good saves to keep Terriers in the game and they are now equal on points with Sunderland RCA, who have a better goal difference.

Bishop Auckland went down to Ashington at Heritage Park. Martin Swales’ side dominated for long periods but were twice caught on the counter-attack.

Right on the stroke of half-time Andrew Johnson gathered a loose ball and passed to Sam Norris who advanced at great speed down the right and his centre was slammed home by Glen Taylor.

Bishop’s Dean Douglas and Keiran Megran both hit the woodwork before Ashington scored the crucial second goal seven minutes from time when newcomer Martin Brittain completed a three-man move following another quick break.

Whitley Bay went in front through Phil Airey after a couple of minutes when he side-footed home following good work by Chris Reid but it wasn’t until added time that the hopes of Penrith ended as Reid sent in a glancing header from Paul Chow’s cross.

The goals flowed at Belle Vue where Consett edged Billingham Synthonia 4-3. Luke Sullivan was an early scorer but Synners hit back courtesy of Michael Sweet and Danny Newby.

Three goals from Michael Mackay, Gilberto Chapim and Calvin Smith in the space of 12 minutes fired Consett into a 4-2 lead but when Joel Callender replied with 13 minutes still left on the clock, it was anyone’s game.

Whickham will have home advantage over West Auckland Town in the Fourth Round of the FA Carlsberg Vase. Following a 3-3 draw in West Yorkshire last Tuesday, only one goal proved sufficient in the replay against Brighouse Town at The Glebe.

With extra-time looming, Ross Peareth came up trumps, delivering a tremendous shot from outside the penalty area in the 90th minute.