South Shields Westoe gunning for winner-takes-all victory

Raymie Elliott in action in the early season encounter between South Shields Westoe and Barnard Castle.
Raymie Elliott in action in the early season encounter between South Shields Westoe and Barnard Castle.

Lookers-sponsored South Shields Westoe head south tomorrow to take on third placed Barnard Castle in a winner takes all match.

The winners will then be faced with a play-off final clash against either West Leeds or York for a place in the North One East Division, joining Northern, who are already promoted.

In a Durham & Northumberland 1 season that has seen huge improvements within the side, it’s fitting that the final match is against the side who narrowly beat them in the first game of the season.

The side has made great progress under the coaching team of Graeme Smith and Chris Judson, and should continue to improve as they gain valuable experience.

It is notable that the side have gained at least one point from every single match this season, showing that they only need to improve by small margins to dominate at this level.

As the young side gain in experience, they will see a marked improvement in decision-making and focus on the pitch, which are the main reasons for the slip-ups this year.

Westoe have almost their full complement available for selection and the management team find themselves in the envious position of being able to select a side geared for the Barnie game based on form and tactics, rather than availability.

This season has seen Westoe remain true to the ethos of a Community Club, selecting a side from home-grown local players and resisting the temptation to buy in marquee players to bolster their squad.

The club are putting on a coach for supporters who want to go to the Barnard Castle away game (limited seating), leaving the club at 1pm.

Tickets are £5 to help cover costs and are available from Suzanne Etchells.