Northern League Cup Semi Final
3rd May 2018
Stockton Town v Dunston UTS
Attendance 267
  Stockton Town  



Dunston UTS beat The Anchors to reach the final....



Dunston UTS travelled to Stockton to play their fourth game in 6 days as they looked to reach their second cup final of the season. After a great performance the previous night when they beat Bishop Auckland six goals to one manager Chris Swailes found his side depleted with several players missing and only three substitutes, himself and two goal keepers. However the camp was in good spirits prior to the game and were really up for the task ahead against the FA Vase finalists.

Dunston began the game by attacking their opponents and putting them on the back foot. With Michael Hall in the unusual position in midfield they were winning tackles and getting forward as quickly as possible. Their first chance came in the 7th minute when Thear showed great control on the edge of the box only to be crowded out in the last minute. Stockton were playing a lot of possession football but were not making much progress against the Dunston mid field who were in command of the game.

Dunston again threatened the home goal when Thear released Elliott who went past this marker but his shot was turned around the post. Stockton finally threatened in the 20th minute when Kelly got behind the defence but his effort went just

past the post. Dunston took a deserved lead in the 25th minute when they were awarded a free kick for a back pass. Stafford laid the ball to Thear who drove it into the net. A lead fully deserved. Stockton strived to get into the game but Dunston defence were superb and Harrison in the Dunston goal was rarely troubled. In the 40th minute Owen Henderson raced into the Stockton half and beat two players only for the Stockton keeper to make a vital block.

Half time Stockton 0  Dunston UTS 1

Stockton began the second half being more positive and were getting the ball forward a lot quicker. However the Dunston work rate was massive and the defence held firm. Pearson, Stafford and Hall were working tirelessly in mid field and the defence were restricting Stockton to long range efforts. Thear and Elliott were causing the home defence problems and it came as no surprise when Thear beat his marker in the 59th minute to drill the ball inside the post and put his side two up. Stockton began to have a good spell but could not break down the Dunston defence until the 81st minute when a long ball from defence was controlled by Coleman who fired past Harrison.

A hectic ten minutes followed but in the 92nd minute Thear again beat his marker and brilliantly lobbed the home keeper to complete his hat trick and shoot his side into the final. Their first League Cup Final Since 2006.

Dunston Team: Harrison, Marrs, Capewell, Pollock, Halliday, C.Ellliott, Pearson, Hall, Stafford, Henderson, L. Thear.

Subs: Grant, Clark, Swailes


Man of the match could be anyone of the eleven who started and finished the game but I am sure the lads will not begrudge a special mention to Liam Thear. Three great goals and he tore their defence apart. Well done to you all.




Liam Thear  

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Report by MNJ