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.