In-form sides ready for cup clash

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A CLOSE result is anticipated when in-form sides Willington and West Allotment Celtic meet in the First Round of the Ernest Armstrong Memorial Cup at Hall Lane tonight.

After gaining promotion from the Wearside League, Willington made a stuttering start to the season but have now found their feet and are up to midtable.

The Tynesiders, with just two defeats in 16 games, are third top only a couple of points behind leaders Heaton Stannington with two games in hand.

A big boost for Willington is the return of Adam Sakr, Aiden Goody and Liam Whitworth, who were all banned for Saturday’s game.

A doubt though surrounds the availability of Stephen Howe and Danny Lee is definitely ruled out.

Spennymoor Town need just one point from their game at Penrith to topple local rivals Shildon and move back to the top of the Ebac Northern League First Division.

Jason Ainsley’s side slipped to second at the week end when they were on Durham Challenge Cup duty and Shildon clinched a last-gasp winning goal at Sunderland RCA.

Bishop Auckland, with former Ryhope CW manager Martin Swales in charge, host Team Northumbria who on Saturday caused a big upset by defeating Newcastle Benfield. Swales will be hoping for more of the same from John Butler, who has already impressed following his recent move from Ryhope CW.

West Auckland Town will defend the only unbeaten record in the two divisions when they take on Guisborough Town. A win will lift them into fifth position.