01 Nov 2020 in Match Reports
It was goals galore at Kingsley Park yesterday afternoon as Albion trounced Washington 5-1 to pick up their first home win of the season...
RACA 5-1 Washington
An on-song Albion thrashed Washington 5-1 in a crucial six-pointer at Kingsley Park to secure their first home win of the campaign.
Law, Gunn and Jasper fired RACA into a quick-fire lead after just 20 minutes, with Gunn bagging another on the stroke of half-time to put the hosts into a commanding position at the break. Lewis McGeoch pulled one back from the spot to ignite faint whispers of a Washy comeback but any hopes of doing so were soon put to bed when Jasper got his brace deep into the second half.
Albion were boosted by four on-field returns with Dick, Law and Gunn returning from injury and slotting straight into the midfield. David Hansen replaced Josh Graham between the sticks to make his second appearance of the season. Assistant coach Conor Jennings was also back in the dugout alongside the caretaker management team of John Thompson and Malcolm Connelly.
This was a game that RACA dominated from the offset and their first half-chance came on six minutes when Turnbull hooked a ball into the area from deep. His cross grazed the head of Jasper but the striker couldn’t get enough contact to steer his effort goalward.
The opener came shortly after when Joyeux punted a long ball over the top of the Washy backline. Law managed to nudge it forward with one touch before placing a 30-yard half-volley into the bottom corner beyond the hapless Grant Lowerson. Law’s clever piece of intuition to take the shot early caught the goalkeeper off guard and gave his side the early breakthrough.
Both Law and Gunn’s presence gave Albion a real creative spark in the final third and at one point the pair combined beautifully on the left-wing, playing a swift one-two and then a low cross getting drilled into the box by Law. Jasper was brought down as he approached the ball but his half-hearted appeals for a penalty were turned away as the referee judged the challenge to be fair play.
RACA’s lead doubled a minute later when Jasper’s clever dummy put Outterside clean through inside the area. The winger was hesitant with the shot and appeared to lose the chance to score, but recovered well to tee off Dick. His shot was blocked by the keeper straight into the path of Gunn - who slotted home comfortably from close range.
The number ten turned creator almost instantly, jinking past several players on the right flank and floating an inviting ball into the area. A 50/50 battle in the box saw Jack Moody claim possession, and he laid it off to Jasper to nod home for his second goal in as many games since his RACA return.
Washington looked poor, with half of them looking as though they were still in the dressing room. A whirlwind opening 20 minutes saw them blown away as Albion hardly gave them an inch of grass from the first whistle.
Lowerson pulled off a superb save to tip Gav Dick’s 40-yard bullet onto the crossbar - with frustrations starting to show for the away side not long after when star man Brad Chisholm hacked down the Albion midfielder on 43 minutes. The challenge resulted in a flare-up between both teams and the Washy winger picking up a caution.
The fourth came just before half time when Law burst down the left-wing, cut inside his fullback and tested Lowerson from distance. Gunn was there again to mop up the spilled rebound as a goal-fest was unfolding at Kingsley Park.
Washy did improve in the second half with Chisholm having two half-decent chances to pull one back. A glimmer of hope came when Joyeux gave away a penalty and substitute McGeoch converted from the resulting spot-kick.
It proved too little too late and their dismal day was complete when an efficient counter-attack was rounded off by Jasper.
Lee Richardson, who had only been on the pitch momentarily, switched a lovely pass out wide for Outterside. The winger put the afterburners on as he charged towards the penalty area, cutting it back to the Albion forward for a simple finish.
Richardson himself will be disappointed not to score when he drew a quality save from Lowerson at point-blank range, as RACA coasted to a comfortable victory and a much-needed three points.
It had been 10 years to the day since a team of Geordies defeated a team of Mackems 5-1 on Tyneside. That scoreline was replicated at Kingsley Park instead of St James’ Park yesterday afternoon as Albion displayed their best performance of the season.
With key players back from injury, the team can start looking up the table rather than other their shoulder, with the squad for the first time in a while showing depth in offensive areas.
Everybody at the club knew that this was a game they needed to win and, when the pressure was on, they delivered in style.
A special mention for Michael Stephenson is thoroughly deserved as well. After the departure of Joe Shperherd to Bedlington in midweek, the centre-half stepped up to the plate and didn’t put a foot wrong throughout the whole 90 minutes.
Starting XI: Hansen, Joyeux, Turnbull, Stephenson, Moody, Davis, Dick, Outterside, Gunn, Law, Jasper
RACA fans Man of the Match - Scott Jasper