Northern League: Washington hunt top-six spot

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WASHINGTON are looking to move into the top six in Division Two of the Ebac Northern League by claiming all three points against Willington at Hall Lane tomorrow.

Following the emphatic victory over First Division Dunston UTS in the Durham Challenge Cup on Tuesday night, manager Steven Hutchinson reckons he faces some difficult selection decisions.

“I’ve got Michael Coughlan, Mark Davison, Stephen Halliday and Richard Paxton coming back and there’s a chance that Joe Walton could be available, so it’s not going to be easy deciding who to leave out,” said Hutchinson.

The Mechanics have taken 16 points from their last six games and Hutchinson claims that beating Dunston with a depleted squad confirms the team’s progress.

Washington midfielder Josh Allen has joined Hebburn Town.

Chester-le-Street cannot call upon Scott Cresswell or Jordan Fraser against Darlington RA at Brinkburn Road, while Birtley Town manager Tony Boakes is hoping to sign Kraig Wilkinson from Billingham Town in time for him to make his debut at home to Ryton and Crawcrook Albion.

In Division One, Dunston UTS would go second if they defeat visitors Penrith.

Once again, Billy Irwin’s side is severely depleted. Gary Ormston is getting married and also missing are Michael Dixon, Dale Burrell, David Scorer, Lee McAndrew and Craig Hodgson.

Danny Craggs, meanwhile, has been transferred to Consett while Steven Shaw has moved to Ashington, for whom he could be included at Celtic Nation.

Durham City host Morpeth Town at New Ferens Park and boss Ian Chandler welcomes back Ross Wilkinson, Callum Hope and Reece Noble, together with recent newcomer, goalkeeper Mark Cook.

Morpeth are hoping to include a new signing especially as Stephen Forster is working. Manager Nick Grey is concerned at the number of goals his team is leaking. “We are giving them away as if it was Christmas and we really have got to tighten up at the back,” he said.

Jarrow Roofing, who are up to seventh place, could find it difficult at Newton Aycliffe, who are also on the rise following the resent appointment of ex-West Auckland boss Peter Dixon as manager.

Roofing chief Richie McLoughlin goes without Kevin Whitehead, Paul Gardiner, Brian Johnson and goalkeeper Andy Hunter, whose deputy will be Alan Greenan.

John Campbell, in outstanding form all season, is shortly to have a trial for Oxford United. Sheffield Wednesday, among other Football League clubs, are reputed to be interested in the striker.