First Team



Billingham Synthonia

Fri 13 Dec 2019 | Northern League Div 2 | Home


Kingsley Park, Crawcrook




Richard Rowe



Albion stop the rot with a much needed victory with just ten men for three quarters of the game as Liam Barker was controversially sent off

 RACA returned to winning ways in a tempestuous Friday 13th night match with in form Synners, a brace either side of the interval from Scott Jasper ensuring the Teessiders went home empty handed.


A depleted Albion side hosted in form Billingham Synthonia on a Friday the 13th fixture hoping not to face the nightmare of a fourth straight league defeat. An uneventful opening period saw the game flow from end to end without either keeper being troubled. The tenth minute saw Ryton's Scott Jasper hit the deck in the Synners' box following a challenge by early substitute Ellis Bashir but referee Richard Rowe who was to have a difficult evening, waived away the home side's penalty claims. This prompted a period of niggly fouls where the physios & the match officials were the busiest people in the ground as the game was repeatedly held up with players from both side regularly needing attention. This came to a head in on 22 minutes with an on pitch pushing match following Billingham's Joshua Smith ending up on the floor. Following this Ryton's Liam Barker was dismissed for an alleged stamp & hostilities broke out again even spilling out on to the stands as a few angry exchanges were made between spectators while a clearly distraught Barker left the field of play protesting his innocence. Fears that this would extinguish any hopes of an Albion win ended up unfounded as perhaps the sense of injustice fired up the remaining ten players into arguably their most resilient performance of the season. While the Teessiders were impressive on their regular breaks forward, they were either unable to get on the ends of any crosses or were wayward in their shooting, problems that plagued them all game & would ultimately cost them dearly. With the game still punctuated with stoppages for fouls, there wasn't a great deal of goalmouth action although RACA's Sam Norris did go close with an effort on 38 minutes. With the game into the elongated stoppage time Albion took the lead when keeper Josh Graham booted the ball upfield to Jasper who had got goal side of his marker & nodded over keeper Tom Orton to send the home support into raptures. With the cheers still ringing round Kingsley Park, Billingham created what was to be their best chance of the game when Foster Garton drove in a low shot that Graham did well to push away to safety ensuring his side went in to interval 1-0 up.



It was hard to see who had the extra man as Ryton continued to make light of their numerical disadvantage in a still niggly second half & it took only four minutes for them to double their advantage when Joe Shepherd squared to an unmarked Jasper who slotted home his tenth goal of the season. The two goal advantage could have been three in the 53rd minutes but Norris' shot was cleared off the line by Christopher Salmon. The men in green and white resumed their forays forward into RACA territory but profligate finishing & an inability to connect to crosses continued to haunt them, the only exception being when Daniel Earl brought out another fine save from Graham with ten minutes left. Albion comfortably saw the game out to claim possibly the most important three points of the campaign, in doing so completing the double over Synners whose own winning streak was over.





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