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Match reports

Newcastle Benfield 6 Sunderland RCA 0

Submitted by Simon Mears on Thursday, 23 March 2017
Wednesday, 22 March 2017 - 7:30pm
Northern League 1

RCA's Ross Preston defends Benfield's John Campbell in the second half of the match. Photograph: Simon Mears.

For more photos from the match please click here.

Goal scorers - Benfield: Campbell (5); McEvoy.

Sunderland RCA travelled to Newcastle Benfield this evening for another rearranged Northern League fixture. The original match, on January 14th, was abandoned after 21 minutes due to a part of the pitch being frozen. RCA had weathered early pressure from the home side to take the lead in the ninth minute with a well-worked goal from Stephen Callen. Michael Charlton hit the post with a lovely chip, and then, shortly after, the captains gathered with the referee over the part of the pitch that was causing concern and it was handshakes all round - match abandoned.

The two clubs have remarkably similar records so far this season: Both have 48 points, made up of 13 wins and nine draws. RCA have a game in hand, but Benfield have a superior goal-difference.

Benfield were worthy winners, 3-1, in the reverse fixture at Meadow Park back in September - although the RCA side was severely depleted that night.

RCA made two changes to the side that drew nil-nil with Newton Aycliffe on Saturday - Craig Hodgson and Michael Charlton were both ruled out injured and were replaced by James Armstrong and James Cassidy.

The sides lined up as follows:

Benfield: Grainger; Turnbull (c); Dummett; McArdle; Tobin; Scorbie; McCarthy; McEvoy; Brayson; Campbell; Cornish.

RCA: Carmichael; Richardson; McGuinness; Preston; Swansbury (c); Armstrong; Cassidy; Hubbard; Butler; Larkin; Callen.

Sunderland RCA o Newton Aycliffe 0

Submitted by Simon Mears on Sunday, 19 March 2017
Saturday, 18 March 2017 - 3:00pm
Northern League 1

Captains' challenge: RCA captain Greg Swansbury and Newton Aycliffe captain Jamie Owens compete for the ball. Photograph: Simon Mears.

For more photos from the match please click here.

Sunderland RCA welcomed Newton Aycliffe to Meadow Park for this mid table Northern League match. A win for RCA would close the gap on the sides immediately above as the push for a top ten place continues. A win for Aycliffe, however, would open up a comfortable lead over their hosts. So a real mid table six-pointer to look forward to.

RCA won the reverse fixture 3-2 at Moore Lane in my result, if not performance, of the season - from being 2-0 down after 65 minutes, RCA fought back with three second half goals in ten minutes to win the match.

RCA made just one change to the side that pushed Morpeth Town all the way on Wednesday evening. Reece Noble - injured early on at Morpeth - was ruled out and replaced by Luke Richardson.

The two teams lined up as follows:

RCA: Carmichael; Richardson; McGuinness; Preston; Swansbury (c); Hodgson; Charlton; Hubbard; Butler; Larkin; Callen.

Newton Aycliffe: Pentony; Lovegreen; Howes; Brown; Browne; Mitton; Banks; Trotter; Costello; Owens (c); Gray.

Prior to kick-off there was an impeccably observed minute’s silence in memory of RCA fan Alf Gibbons, who sadly passed away shortly after our home game with Whitley Bay on December 17th.

Morpeth Town 3 Sunderland RCA 2

Submitted by Simon Mears on Thursday, 16 March 2017
Wednesday, 15 March 2017 - 7:30pm
Northern League 1

Luke Richardson shields the ball from former RCA favourite Joe Walton. Photograph: Simon Mears.

For more photos from the match please click here.

Goal scorers - Morpeth: Graydon (pen); Morris; Walton. RCA: Callen; Larkin (pen).

Sunderland RCA made the trip to current FA Vase holders Morpeth Town for this rearranged Northern League fixture. RCA are currently on a mini-unbeaten run of three matches - with a draw and two wins.

This season Morpeth have been formidable at home in the League - winning 14 of their 15 matches at Craik Park. Only South Shields have taken points courtesy of a 4-0 win.

RCA made one change to the side that won impressively at Bishop Auckland on Saturday. Recent signing Craig Hubbard was given a full debut after coming off the bench on Saturday, replacing Jonathan Davis in midfield.

The two sides lined up as follows:

Morpeth Town: Dryden; Forster; Novak; Sayer; Reid; Turner; Taylor; Graydon (c); Walton; Henderson; Morris.

RCA: Carmichael; Noble; McGuinness; Preston; Swansbury (c); Hodgson; Charlton; Hubbard; Butler; Larkin; Callen.

Bishop Auckland 1 Sunderland RCA 2

Submitted by Simon Mears on Sunday, 12 March 2017
Saturday, 11 March 2017 - 3:00pm
Northern League 1

Goal scorer Stephen Callen clears the ball under pressure from former RCA player Stuart Thompson. Photograph: Simon Mears.

For more photos from the match please click here.

For Peter Jackson's photos please click here.

Goal scorers - Bishop Auckland: Bennett. RCA: Butler; Callen.

Following the postponement of consecutive home matches against Penrith and South Shields last week, Sunderland RCA were back in action today with a trip to Bishop Auckland.

Both sides had a win and a draw in their previous two matches - RCA drew with Chester-le-Street and beat West Allotment Celtic a fortnight ago. Bishops, meanwhile, beat Seaham Red Star 3-0 at Heritage Park and drew 1-1 with Ryhope Colliery Welfare last time out.

RCA made three changes to the side that won at West Allotment Celtic a fortnight ago. Jonathan Carmichael returned in goal in place of Neal Bussey and Michael Charlton and Jonathan Davis were back in midfield replacing Brad Wilson and James Cassidy, who took a place on the bench.

The sides lined up as follows:

Bishop Auckland: Dawson; Thompson; Hoganson; Colquhoun (c); Madden; Griffiths; Williamson; Bennett; Johnson; Ward; Smith.

RCA: Carmichael; Noble; McGuinness; Preston; Swansbury (c); Hodgson; Charlton; Davis; Butler; Larkin; Callen.

West Allotment Celtic 0 Sunderland RCA 3

Submitted by Simon Mears on Sunday, 26 February 2017
Saturday, 25 February 2017 - 3:00pm
Northern League 1

Reece Noble goes into another challenge at West Allotment Celtic. Photograph: Simon Mears.

For more photos from the match please click here.

Goal scorers - RCA: Larkin (3).

Following last Saturday’s goalless draw at home to Chester-le-Street, Sunderland RCA travelled to West Allotment Celtic - another side in the Division One relegation zone. West Allotment had lost their previous two matches against Chester-le-Street and Shildon to a single goal - so would be looking to bounce back.

RCA made four changes to the side that drew with Chester-le-Street last Saturday. New father Neal Bussey was in goal, Greg Swansbury returned to captain the side, Stephen Callen was back on the left wing, and Colin Larkin returned up front.

The two sides lined up as follows:

West Allotment: Bannon; Pendlebury; Douglas; Dunn (c); Stoneman; Hall; McGlen; Stephenson; Reay; Henderson; Parkinson.

RCA: Bussey; Noble; McGuinness; Preston; Swansbury (c); Hodgson; Butler; Larkin; Callen; Wilson; Cassidy.

Sunderland RCA 0 Chester-le-Street Town 0

Submitted by Simon Mears on Sunday, 19 February 2017
Saturday, 18 February 2017 - 3:00pm
Northern League 1

Ross Preston clears the ball during the first half of the match. Photograph: Simon Mears.

For more photos from the match please click here.

Two sides in need of a win - Sunderland RCA and Chester-le-Street Town - went into today’s Northern League match at Meadow Park on the back of losing runs - RCA have lost their last four matches, following a seven-match winning streak, while Chester-le-Street have lost their last five games. But despite being at the foot of the table, Chester-le-Street are a side not to be underestimated - It took a penalty shoot-out for North Shields to knock them out of the League Cup, after a creditable 1-1 draw. And in their previous match, they recorded their only home win of the season after beating League champions Shildon 2-1 in arguably the most notable result of the season.

RCA won the reverse fixture 4-2 back in August with a penalty from Jonathan Davis and a Stephen Callen hat-trick.

RCA made three changes to the side that lost to Marske United last time out - Ross Preston returned to captain the side in the absence of the injured Greg Swansbury, and Reece Noble and Brad Wilson returned, replacing Stephen Callen and Nathan Cummings.

The sides lined up as follows:

RCA: Carmichael; Gordon; McGuinness; Preston (c); Hodgson; Noble; Charlton; Wilson; Butler; Davis; Cassidy.

Chester-le-Street: Wilson; Stephenson; Reynolds; Grant; Grant-Soulsby; Hepplewhite; Hailes; Megran; Surrey; Laws; White.

Sunderland RCA 2 Marske United 4

Submitted by Simon Mears on Wednesday, 8 February 2017
Tuesday, 7 February 2017 - 7:30pm
Brooks Mileson Memorial League Cup

John Butler scored RCA's first goal in the League Cup Quarter Final. Photograph: Simon Mears.

For more photos from the match please click here.

Connor Lamb's match report is here.

Goal scorers - Marske: Bulmer; Butterworth; Round; Coffey. RCA: Butler; J Davis.

Sunderland RCA welcomed Marske United to Meadow Park for a Quarter Final tie in the Brooks Mileson Memorial League Cup - with a place in the Semi Final the reward for the winners.

For RCA this was a first Division One side to be faced in the League Cup this season - having beat Esh Winning, Northallerton Town and, most recently, a five star - and five goal - performance at Whickham.

Marske, meanwhile, have had home victories over fellow Division One sides Guisborough Town and Bishop Auckland in previous rounds.

RCA recalled Kevin Gordon and Nathan Cummings in defence and John Butler started up front.

The sides lined up as follows:

RCA: Carmichael; Gordon; McGuinness; Cummings; Swansbury (c); Hodgson; Charlton; Cassidy; Butler; J Davis; Callen.

Marske: Dean; Dinsdale; Bell; Butterworth; Ramsbottom; Wheatley (c); Bulmer; Gott; Earl; Coffey; Round.

Ashington 3 Sunderland RCA 2

Submitted by Simon Mears on Sunday, 5 February 2017
Saturday, 4 February 2017 - 3:00pm
Northern League 1

Adam McGuinness launches an attack late in the match at Ashington. Photograph: Simon Mears.

For more photos from the match please click here.

Goal scorers - Ashington: Downey (pen); McAndrew; Harmison. RCA: McBryde (2).

Sunderland RCA were back in Northern League action today with a trip to Ashington. RCA had lost their last two matches - conceding nine goals in the process - and were looking to bounce back and rediscover the excellent form shown in December.

Going into the match, Ashington were on their worst run of results this season, having lost their last six Northern League games and a League Cup tie. Back in August, RCA won the reverse fixture with a 2-1 win at Meadow Park.

RCA recalled Adam McGuinness at left back and Liam McBryde up front and Jonathan Davis started after coming off the bench last Saturday.

The two sides lined up as follows:

Ashington: Grant; Henderson; Salmon; Bell; Christensen (c); Buchanan. Richardson; Bell; Downey; Harmison; Pearson.

RCA: Carmichael; Richardson; McGuinness; Hodgson; Swansbury (c); Noble; Charlton; J Davis; McBryde; Callen; Cassidy.

Newport Pagnell Town 3 Sunderland RCA 2 (AET)

Submitted by Simon Mears on Sunday, 29 January 2017
Saturday, 28 January 2017 - 3:00pm
FA Vase

Swanna and The Swans: RCA captain Greg Swansbury attacks a first half corner. Photograph: Simon Mears.

For more photos from the match please click here.

Goal scorers - Newport Pagnell: Smith; Pryke; Lawless. RCA: Larkin; Callen

Sunderland RCA made the long journey to Buckinghamshire and to Newport Pagnell Town for today’s Fifth Round tie in the FA Vase. For Newport Pagnell this was a first ever Fifth Round match, and for RCA, a second after also reaching the Fifth Round last season. For the winners a place in the Quarter Final for the first time and the thrill of knowing that Wembley would be just two rounds, and three matches, away.

Both sides had progressed to this stage of the Vase with some impressive results in previous rounds and - with similar league records this season - it looked like a close game was in prospect.

RCA’s terrific run of seven wins in a row came to an end last Saturday with a home defeat to Shildon, while Newport Pagnell were also losing away to Yaxley in a less than ideal preparation to the big game.

With Ross Preston and Adam McGuinness again cup-tied, Luke Richardson was switched to left back with Clayton Davis returning at right back. Reece Noble started in central midfield for the first time since returning from Washington, with Craig Hodgson moving from midfield to central defence.

The sides lined up as follows:

Newport Pagnell: Osborn; Wilkinson; Williams; Smeathers (c); Pryke; Muya; Smith; Ling; Sandy; Lawless; O'Neill.

RCA: Carmichael; C Davis; Richardson; Hodgson; Swansbury (c); Charlton; Cassidy; Noble; Butler; Larkin; Callen.

Sunderland RCA 3 Shildon 6

Submitted by Simon Mears on Sunday, 22 January 2017
Saturday, 21 January 2017 - 3:00pm
Northern League 1

James Cassidy, scorer of RCA's first goal, during the match against Shildon. Photograph: Simon Mears.

For more photos from the match please click here.

More photos from Martyn Tweddle.

Shildon photographer Tom Clegg's photos are here.

Photos from Dennis Clegg are here.

Goal scorers - RCA: Cassidy; Charlton; J Butler. Shildon: Wing (2); Greulich-Smith; O.G.; Bell (pen); Rae.

Sunderland RCA welcomed Northern League champions Shildon to Meadow Park for what promised to be a highly competitive match. Shildon are currently sitting in third position in the table, hanging onto the coat-tails of North and South Shields as they bid to retain their title - an ambition which was dented by a surprise 2-1 defeat at Chester-le-Street in their most recent Northern League match.

The big talking point among RCA and Shildon fans alike was the news on Friday evening that Shildon’s long-serving management team of Gary Forrest and Stuart Niven had resigned from their positions - with Daniel ‘Bobby’ Moore taking over as manager.

RCA made six changes to the side that won so impressively at Whickham on Tuesday. Jonathan Carmichael returned in goal, Luke Richardson was in at right back, Greg Swansbury captained the side, Craig Hodgson and Mark Robinson returned in midfield, with John Butler up front.

The teams lined up as follows:

RCA: Carmichael; Richardson; McGuinness; Preston; Swansbury (c); Hodgson; Charlton; Robinson; Butler; Larkin; Callen.

Shildon: Jeffries; Harwood (c); Robson; Dodds; Parker; Groves; Bell; Hodgson; Purewal; Wing; Greulich-Smith.

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