By Brian Bennett
Ashington FC’s assistant manager Gareth McAlindon saw his side go down to a single goal defeat at the hands of West Auckland at Woodhorn Lane on Saturday – but Steve Bowey’s number two thought his side were worthy of a share of the spoils.
A tenth minute goal by Anthony Bell proved decisive but a clearly disappointed McAlindon said afterwards: “I thought there was nothing in the game overall and we didn’t get a bit of luck. On Tuesday against Billingham Synthonia we didn’t perform but got a 2-0 win whilst today we have performed well and lost.
I thought we definitely deserved a point on our second half performance and also after the way we dealt with the first half.” McAlindon stressed the point that the visitors had scored when Ashington were temporarily down to ten men: “I thought we were doing okay then there was a foul on Tom [White] which obviously the referee didn’t spot.
White had to come off because of the blood on his leg and their goal came during that time when we were outnumbered in the middle of the field. Having said that, it was up to us to deal with it but there was a bit of confusion with a midfield runner.
Apart from that, West Auckland had quite a bit of pressure down the hill and with the wind but I thought we did well and didn’t think there was much in the game in the first half at all.” McAlindon praised the Ashington lads for their second half performance: “I thought we were by far the better team after the interval,” he said, “We knocked the ball around and some of our play was brilliant.
Dale [Pearson] has had one cleared off the line and some of the play including the passing was fantastic. The lads played how we want them to play and the work rate was excellent. We want to see that the players care and put in performances like today – because if we do, we will beat a lot of teams.”
McAlindon thought the red cards issued to Ashington’s Dale Pearson and West’s Ross Colquhoun were both harsh: “Dale has gone to ground but he was low and he hasn’t hurt anybody,” he added, “The West Auckland lad was dismissed for nothing really because it wasn’t a bad challenge at all and in the final analysis, you wouldn’t have argued if both players had received a yellow card instead of red one.”
McAlindon believes there is a good bond amongst the playing staff: “There is a togetherness there and you can feel it,” he said, “It transfers onto the pitch and you can visibly see that.”
Ashington have no midweek fixture but for Saturday’s trip to face Dunston UTS, skipper Craig Scott, Luke Salmon and Ryan Bell all return to the squad.
Dale Pearson will find out if he will be able to play in the game on Friday afternoon following an appeal by Ashington CFC over his dismissal.