RACA 0-1 Cullercoats
It was a disappointing return to action at Kingsley Park as a second-half goal from Jos Thompson snatched a tight win for the Seasiders.
The winger’s strike on the hour mark was enough to edge out a closely fought game - with big chances being squandered at either end.
Albion haven’t played at home since the 0-0 draw with Washington on March 7 and Mark Bullock’s men went into today’s clash slightly out of nick having only picked up one win in pre-season so far.
A poor first-half saw neither team manage to take control of the game but RACA should have been ahead on the stroke of half-time with headers from Josh Crews and Louie Anderson being cleared off the line - both from Harry Outterside corner kicks.
The stand-out performer of Albion’s first-half was young defender Crews, signed during the summer having played for Park View Academy last season. Only 17-years old, he is comfortable playing out from the back but isn’t afraid to put a foot in either, possessing physical strength that is a rarity for a youngster of his age.
Cullercoats pressed harder after the break and almost broke the deadlock when Robbie Williamson drilled a low cross into the box only for it to travel inches wide of striker Michael Laws’ outstretched toe.
Bullock freshened things up shortly after with four changes as he introduced Matty Law, Ben Joyeux, Callum Turnbull and Joe Shepherd into the fold.
The visitors did get their reward when midfielder Brian Dodworth slid in Jos Thompson who calmly buried his effort into the bottom corner past David Hansen.
Hansen protested with the linesman calling for offside but his objections were quickly dismissed by the referee - confirming that the Seasiders had taken an unlikely lead.
From this point on the game opened up and Cullercoats almost doubled their lead on 68 minutes when Hylton Hubb had one cleared off the line by Gavin Dick.
Those in attendance at Kingsley Park thought the scores were set to be level when Law burst onto the end of a through ball only to be beaten to the chance by goalkeeper Scott Mason.
Harry Outterside was a threat from out wide throughout and another whipping delivery in the final stages was almost turned in but for another decent stop by Mason.
As the referee blew the final whistle it succumbed Albion to another pre-season defeat, but one that gives Bullock plenty food for thought ahead of our trip to Rutherford on Wednesday.