Durham ready for Penrith clash

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Ebac Northern League

by Malcolm Pratt

DURHAM City manager Ian Chandler missed out on a big signing last week but he’s certain he’ll add to the squad before the end of the month.

Ahead of tomorrow’s First Division game at Penrith he said: “We had a deal arranged but the lad decided to go elsewhere.

“I’ve now got someone lined up and he should join us in the next couple of weeks. I need to bring someone in after transferring Ollie Hotchkiss to Bishop Auckland.”

In addition, Chandler has granted a transfer request to goalkeeper Gareth Young.

Following their midweek victory which lifted them into the top six, the Citizens are confident of securing back-to-back wins at Penrith especially as they’ll have a full-strength squad making the journey.

Bedlington Terriers are an early-season surprise package. Last time, they only just avoided relegation but go to bottom of the table Crook Town aiming for a sixth win in 11 games.

Manager Ian Skinner reports that he misses Craig Hindmarch and Marc Walmsey due to injury while Paul Watson, Conor Winter, Stephen Young, Sam Walton and Scott Blandford are also unavailable.

“We lost by the only goal on Tuesday night to Dunston UTS who took over from us at the top of the table but if we show the same attitude and effort then we have a very good chance of getting a positive result at the Millfield ground,” observed Skinner.

Billingham Synthonia finished with eight players on the pitch in their midweek game and five will not make the starting line-up at home to Whitley Bay.

Injuries sideline Robbie Bettson, James Briggs, Luke Richardson, Shaun Clarke and Forster Garton.

Whitley Bay are visitors to Central Avenue and boss Leon Ryan reports that the only absentee is Chris Reid who could make his comeback from a troublesome ankle injury in the next couple of weeks.

Morpeth Town go to Jarrow Roofing and manager Nick Gray is pleased with the start his side has made declaring: “Compared to this time last season we have made considerable progress but need to build up a bit of momentum. I feel we are in with a shout at Jarrow since Stephen Forster and David Hiftle return to a full strength squad.”

Sunderland RCA who, along with Crook Town have yet to win, are second bottom only by having a better goal difference than the Millfield men.

The Wearsiders could again find the going difficult at Guisborough Town. Although the hosts have not replicated the exciting form they displayed in later stages of last season, they still pose a threat.