Northern League: Durham City confident for attractive clash with faltering Hebburn

Ryhope CW (red) take on Washington in Division One last week. Picture by Kevin Brady
Ryhope CW (red) take on Washington in Division One last week. Picture by Kevin Brady

Durham City, with five wins in their last six matches in all competitions, are confident for tomorrow’s Second Division clash at home to Hebburn Town.

City, though, have Steve Malloy suspended, while Kieran Harnett, Sam Joyce and Jeremy Allen are still unavailable.

Ross Simpson may be back, but Gary Thompson is definitely out injured for up to three weeks, with soft tissue damage.

Boss Ollie Hotchkiss said: “I am looking forward to the game and we have had a couple of really good results lately, showed good character, and put in some good performances.

“It will be a tough game against an experienced Hebburn side, who have improved a lot over the last six months, but we are ready for the test and if the players play to the level they have been the last few fixtures, then we should be OK and hopefully we can get the three points.”

Hebburn, without a league win since October 6, are down to fifth place. Boss Scott Oliver said: “Durham have improved hugely of late but it is about us getting back to basics and stop making errors in both boxes.”

Chester-le-Street, with three wins in a row, entertain Alnwick Town and manager Colin Wake said: “We still have a few lads missing and a few returning.

“Missing are Kieran Megran and Danny Naylor and returning are Craig Marron, Kevin Dixon, Lee Mole and Michael Hepplewhite.

“We just want to keep the momentum going, after some encouraging recent performances. We have looked more solid of late and have also been a threat in the final third, which has been pleasing.”

Easington Colliery are at home to Bedlington Terriers, with Jack Pounder back in the squad having missed the last two games, due to being cup-tied.

Brian Smith is likely to be involved, having signed last Saturday, and Brennan Ball and Michael Cooke could both return to the side, but Michael Bulmer is a doubt.

Tow Law Town, in third place, travel to Brandon United without the suspended trio of Lewis Brown, Glenn Caygill and Chris Storey.

Crook Town journey to second-top Heaton Stannington, who remain unbeaten at home.

Crook manager Chris Lax said: “Skipper Chris Emms is a doubt with a groin strain, full-back Joseph Spooner is missing due to work and centre-half Ryan Coles misses out due to a hamstring strain.

“Forward Daniel Pigg returns after illness. The game will be a tough one as Heaton are chasing promotion.”

Seventh-top Esh Winning are on the road to Thornaby and hope to have their two new signings from Tow Law - Kai Hewitson and Matty Soulsby - available.

Nick Marley is back from holiday, but Esh miss Dan Mann.

Willington are away to Billingham Town, looking for a win to draw level on points with the eighth-placed Teessiders.

Jarrow entertain Blyth, boosted by the signings of the experienced Ross Wilson and youngster Luke Collins.

Nick Quinn is unavailable. while Max Kirkham serves the second game of a three-match suspension.

Kai Elliott’s injury will be assessed, but Liam Clark and Jak Quantrill are unlikely to be fit. With goalkeeper Gary Frater also an injury doubt, Mark English is likely to be in goal.

Northallerton Town welcome Ryton & Crawcrook Albion and have skipper Dan Jones back alongside Liam Jarvie and Karl Hewitt. Aaron Ramsbottom, Colin Anderson, Stephen Jackson, should be available again, plus Andrew Shepherd and Shaun Hudson, return to the squad.

Ryton are once again without Philip Hodges and are also without Harry Mitchell and Michael Hedley who are banned.New signing Mason Stephenson will make the squad, along with Ben Miley who will hopefully have recovered from injury.