Wearside League: West End eye perfect start to the New Year in Monkwearmouth Cup

Sunderland West End (red and white) battle against Wearside League rivals Boldon CA in the Shipowners' Cup last month
Sunderland West End (red and white) battle against Wearside League rivals Boldon CA in the Shipowners' Cup last month
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Sunderland West End are at home to South Shields Reserves in an attractive second round tie in the Monkwearmouth Charity Cup as Wearside League teams kick off the New Year.

The tie at Ford Quarry kicks off at 1.30pm.

West End’s Anth Nelson said: “We have a full squad to choose from.

“Brad Forster returns from suspension, David Keithley is looking to start up front. It’s a massive game for us, and will be tough against a good young South Shields Reserves side.”

Manager Barry Cook added: “The only absentees will be Mickey Wharton and Layton Chapman. I am looking forward to the game and hopefully we can get the result we want.”

Shields secretary Philip Reay said: “The break has allowed several players with minor knocks to recover.

“Lewis Strafford should be back for the game, however we will be without Harry Simpson, who has two more games under suspension.”

Shields have also transferred keeper Andy Hunter to neighbours Harton and Westoe.

Reay added: “Our form just before Christmas wasn’t great. There were a couple of disappointing performances, hopefully now players have recovered from knocks they were carrying, we will see an improved performance against Sunderland West End, who are a strong side.”

There is a first round tie at Seaham Red Star Reserves, who entertain Richmond Town (1.30pm(.

Red Star expect skipper Mark Ruddock, Brennan Ball, Paul Henderson and leading scorer Michael Bulmer to return to the side which lost 4-0 last time out at Annfield Plain.

Manager Kevin Dixon is hoping to have two new signings available as he looks to strengthen the squad. Anthony Cowie, who needed hospital attention after suffering a horrendous injury at Annfield Plain, will be unavailable for the rest of the season.

High-flying Richmond have left-backs Mark Hemmingway and Michael Gunnell both missing due to injury. Centre-half Sam Grainger (illness) will also miss out.

Six league matches kick off at 2pm.

Fourth-placed Silksworth CW journey to bottom club Harton and Westoe CW.

Silksworth travel with virtually a full squad. The only absentee is long-term injured player David Stevens, who is sidelined for three months.

Manager Andrew Stobbart said: “It’s good to be back in action once more after the lay-off and I’m hoping that the team are raring to go. I know I am.”

Harton defender Wess Brown is suspended and there are question marks over defender Steven Usher, midfielder Jack Burrell and forwards Shaun Edwards and Danny Lydon, all because of injuries.

Experienced keeper Andy Hunter has rejoined from South Shields and Lee Maitland and former striker David Bulman should be available.

Ashbrooke Belford House entertain Coxhoe Athletic and are missing Stephen Bogie and Harry Graham, who are suspended, while Connor O’Neil is on holiday.

However, they have Marc Moon, Michael Jacob, David Sewell, Kyle Sumner, Jordon Stewart, Dale Wells, Shaun Fisk and Mark Curry returning to the squad.

Boldon CA travel to Wolviston, who will be at full strength with midfielder Josh Chambers returning from Australia, along with defender Andrew McGirr, midfielders Michael Rainsley and Robbie Gratton, who have all served their suspensions.

Boldon manager Paul Mossa is looking forward to getting his team back out on the pitch after the Christmas break and he has been looking to bring in some new players for the rest of the season.

Club captain Jack Lawton has started light running and is targeting the end of January for his return.

Jarrow entertain lowly Darlington 1883 Reserves, and a draw or better will take them back into top spot.

The Perth Green side have an injury doubt over Darren Morton but expect the rest of the squad to be available.

Boss Dave Bell said: “This is a really important game for us as we aim to get back on track following losing our last two league games before the break.

“Darlington will be a difficult test for us and we know we need to get back to winning ways very quickly.

“This is our first home game for a while and we are hoping we can use this to our advantage. We know we will need to get back to our high standard of hard work to have any chance of getting anything from the game.”

Hartlepool travel to Prudhoe Town without Joe Osbourne, while Redcar Athletic, in third, entertain Stokesley SC.

Cleator Moor Celtic visit Cumbrian neighbours Windscale in the only tie in the TWR Shipowners’ Cup second round.