West End boys go international in quest for glory

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SUNDERLAND West End have obtained international clearance for Albanian Arlind Puka, a student at Sunderland University and he goes straight into the squad for the visit to Redcar Athletic in the Wearside League, writes Malcolm Pratt.

Another newcomer Danny Hodge made an impressive debut in the midweek fixture following his switch from Hylton SC and is expected to retain his position in the heart of the defence.

“We are buoyant following the win over Ashbrooke Belford House and with two newcomers in the squad, confident we can get a result at Redcar” enthused manager Anth Nelson.

Easington Colliery are on the crest of a wave following four consecutive wins which has propelled them to joined top.

Assistant manager Craig Parkinson claims there is more quality and experience in the squad and that the team is more resilient than last season.

He said: “We’ve conceded first in three of our four matches but come back to win which is very encouraging.”

The Colliers had a 16-man squad on duty in Wednesday’s fixture at Jarrow and tomorrow Brett Gillatt, Lewis Lynch, Scott Huntley, Liam Beeston, Jordan Thompson, Ryhs Weir and Shaun Smith will also be competing for places when Wolviston visit Welfare Park.

A double blow for Wolviston is the news that club skipper and central defender Shaun Gregory and utility player Robbie McIlroy are both sidelined.

Midfield dynamo Ian Danby has returned from a six week stint abroad and Karl Barry is back from holiday.

Horden CW play at home for the first time and following what manager Keith Brown describes as “a rocky start” are looking to bounce back.

“I feel we haven’t got the rewards our performances deserved and now we are on home soil for the first time I’m looking for nothing less than three points” said Brown.

The Colliers cannot name Andy Lonsdale or Mark Brischuk and Brown awaits news on the fitness of Paul Moss and Darren Atkinson.

Silksworth CW expected to be unchanged at home to Harton and Westoe who are minus brothers, captain Paul and Jack Burrell.

John Murray and Connor Vasey return and there’s a good chance that Graeme Matthewson will have recovered from an ankle injury.

Ashbrooke Belford House face a particularly difficult task at Stockton Town who have won all four games as they bid to retain the Championship for a third successive season.

Joint manager Asa Dobbing reports that Shaun Petch, David Christie, Lee Andrews and Ian Potts are all ruled out but Lewis Hutchinson and Dylan Holden are available.

A big boost to Stockton is that last seasons’s leading scorer Kallum Hannah has completed a three match ban. In addition Max Craggs and Matthew Garbutt are also named in a strong pool, the only absentee being James Ward who is playing cricket for Stockton.

Coxhoe Athletic lines up Scott Richards, Conna Jones and Robert Thompson but Damon Miller is sidelined at Gateshead Leam Rangers who go without goalkeeper Mikael Moens and striker Anth Huddart.

Hartlepool have signed David Laight from Easington Colliery and he goes straight into the squad for the visit of Cleator Moor Celtic when Ross Kidson, Alan Bird and Bradley Staunch are also expected to be involved.

Craig Lines is struggling with a hamstring injury and David Thompson is also a doubt with a back problem.

Annfield Plain include newcomers Liam McNally and Warren Brown at Jarrow and Prudhoe Town will have at least one new player on their team sheet against Whitehaven.