Honours even as Pont get back in action

Gosforth Bohemians 1 Ponteland United 1 Northern Alliance, Division One

PONTELAND United returned to action after two weeks without a game and were without Chris Armstrong and Richard Kent for the visit to Gosforth Bohemians.

On a badly cut-up pitch it was quickly evident that both sets of players were somewhat cautious of the bobbly surface not only for ball control, but also for sureness of foot.

It was United looking the most dangerous in the early stages.

Wright collected a throw-in from L’Argent and worked himself along the goal-line only to see Salter block his angled cross into the goal area. A cross by Davidson was headed down into the path of Wright and his shot was destined for the net but it took a deflection for a corner.

After 30 minutes United lost Rankin with a hamstring problem to be replaced by Jack Bell.

The teenager was quickly involved receiving a neat ball from Holden and playing it down the line to Steve Rae who in turn found Wright, but his shot went over the bar. Five minutes before half-time Wright was through on goal but keeper Stephen Wilkinson dived to his left to thwart the striker.

At the other end Pont’s keeper Taylor who had been relatively quiet did exceptionally well diving to his right to deny Travis Cowling who had burst forward and played a quick one-two before shooting.

Holden and Wright up front were a constant threat with their speed and movement, but the end product just wasn’t there due in part to the playing surface.

Former Ponteland and North Shields player Stephen Salter was using his experience to good effect in defence often being in the right place at the right time to keep the visitors at bay.

The first half surprisingly ended all square with United missing some glorious opportunities and they could easily have been three goals in front at the interval.

Taylor had had little to do in the first half, but the one opportunity to Cowling just illustrated that Bohemians were still in this game despite United creating and spurning several chances.

The second half was only five minutes old when United took the lead.

Hodgson played a ball over the full-back to Holden down the left. He advanced into the penalty area and played the ball into Stevie Rae who just squeezed it past the outstretched arms of Wilkinson.

United piled forward in search of a second, but a goal didn’t come.

Anderson found Davidson and his powerful strike was deflected for a corner.

With half-an-hour remaining, Hodgson was penalised for a strong but considered reckless challenge and L’Argent cleared the free-kick for a corner. From Cowling’s corner, the ball was headed clear to Iain Harris, but his ambitious shot on the half-volley sailed high and wide.

United continued to create chances. Wright collected an excellent cross from L’Argent and his shot on the turn just cleared the bar.

A good move between Holden and Davidson ended with Davidson crossing to the far post, but unfortunately Anderson was stretching and could only slice the cross for a goal kick.

Bohemians started to come more into the game and had a good 10-minute spell. With 20 minutes remaining a free-kick by Nick Thompson found a colleague coming in from the right and although the ball finished in the net the assistant referee had flagged for offside.