Birtley Town vs Sunderland West End


Birtley Town

  • Alex Francis - 2 (42', 72') goal(s)
  • Liam Wotherspoon - 1 (83') goal(s)
  • Aidan Rutledge - 2 (2', 69') goal(s)
  • Tom McIntyre - 1 (52') goal(s)
Sat 01 Apr 2023 | 3:00 pm
Birtley Town


Birtley continued their promotion push on Saturday as they were comfortable 6-0 winners against Sunderland West End.

Match programme is available HERE. Match Highlights are available HERE

Thanks to Mike Snowden for the match report. 

Fresh from a midweek 9-0 win (with their No. 9 scoring six), Birtley thumped six past West End, with Rutledge getting a mere two goals.  They’re hitting top form just at the right time, with automatic promotion and play-offs only a couple of weeks away.

It took him less than two minutes to get going, seconds after their first attack when Rutledge passed the ball to Callum Smith, he chipped it back to Glen Hargrave whose strike produced a fine, reflex save by West End keeper Neal Bussey.  Within seconds they were 1-0 up:  Rutledge with a turn and shot that Bussey managed to get a hand to but was unable to keep it out of the net.

After a blistering start by Birtley, West End just about managed to hold their own despite several attacks by the home team:  Another Hargrave shot stopped by Bussey, a Lewis Orrell strike taken at the second time of asking by the keeper and a Smith shot deflected for a corner.

Half an hour in, West End started to work their way into the game, while Birtley seemed to run out of attacking ideas.  West End started to win some 50-50 balls and Daley Clarke had a header that went wide of the post.

Birtley picked their game up in the last couple of minutes of the half.  Bussey pulled off another good save as Smith tried to bend the ball past him, with the keeper getting his fingertips to the ball to send it out for a corner.  From the corner, Birtley skipper Alex Francis got a glancing header to the ball to send it into the top right hand corner of the net despite a defender getting a touch on the ball.  2-0.

They started the second half in similar mood.  In the opening minute, Hargrave saw a flying header bounce off the bar.  Then, in the 52nd minute, it was Rutledge with the assist, setting Tom McIntyre up.  The No. 11 duly buried it into the goal.

After the third goal, West End managed to re-group but it was only delaying the inevitable. Birtley won a corner that was hit to the far post, Francis headed it back across the goal and Rutledge was on hand to drill it in.  That was quickly followed by a fifth.  A free kick was launched into the West End area by Smith, met with a diving header by Francis for his second of the match.

The scoring was wrapped up when Liam Wotherspoon prodded a ball by Andrew Clarkson home from a couple of feet away.

Birtley came close to adding more:  Bussey pushed a Clarkson header out for a corner, Francis saw a volley bounce off the bar, the keeper managed to get a foot to a shot while lying on the ground, with Birtley unable to push the ball over the line in the ensuing scramble, and then Birtley sub Matthew Ward had their last chance, but his shot was kicked away close to the line by Daniel Martin.

Rutledge’s brace takes his season tally to 55 league goals – a remarkable haul, with a couple of games still to go.

A win for Birtley on Tuesday night would secure their play-off position. 

Manager’s Corner

Paul Bryson was thrilled to see The Hoops form continue: “I was delighted with the way we started the game. The keeper makes a great save in the first minute before Aidan scored to make it 1-0. If I am going to be completely honest I was a bit disappointed with the next 30 minutes. I thought we were loose in possession, tried to force things and lost our way a little bit. When we got the second goal just before the break and I thought we were really good in the second half. The way we played, out of possession we were excellent, in possession we created chance and went onto score another four goals. fair play to our lads, they were tremendous in the second period. We got a strangle hold of the game. I thought Alex Francis was outstanding at the back. The three midfield players were very good and out set-piece delivery was excellent. It was a great day for us and another good crowd. It was fantastic to see Sam Hedley get another 70 minutes under his belt. Young Josh Straissheim is coming on leaps and bounds over the last four or five games. I was really pleased with another clean sheet. We look forward to the Boldon game on Tuesday.”

H2H vs Sunderland West End (all games)
P8 W3 D1 L4 GF15 GA17 Pts10

19.09.2015Sunderland West End 3-1 Birtley Town (DCC-Prelim)
(M. Soulsby)

25.10.2017 – Birtley Town 3-4 Sunderland West End (DCC-R1)
(A. Hall, J. Roberts, T. Smith)

07.09.2019Sunderland West End 4-0 Birtley Town

01.02.2020Birtley Town 2-0 Sunderland West End
(J. Honour, D. Candlish)

24.10.2020 – Birtley Town 1-1 Sunderland West End
(J. Barwick)

21.08.2021 – Birtley Town 1-3 Sunderland West End
(R. Tanoh)

11.02.2022 – Sunderland West End 1-4 Birtley Town
(L. Butler, R. Williamson x2 (2P), A. Morland)

25.10.2022 – Sunderland West End 1-3 Birtley Town
(A. Rutledge x2 (1P), A. Francis)

01.04.2023 – Birtley Town 6-0 Sunderland West End
(A. Rutledge x2, T. McIntyre, A. Francis x2, L. Wotherspoon)

Next up..

Birtley will look to secure their play-off position when they face Boldon C.A on Tuesday evening at the Arrowmark Home Improvements Stadium.    


Date Time League Season
Sat 01 Apr 2023 3:00 pm Northern League D2 2022-23


Birtley Town
Arrowmark Home Improvements Stadium, Durham Road, DH3 2QW


Team1st Half2nd HalfGoals
Birtley Town246
Sunderland W. End000

Birtley Town

1Conor Grant Goalkeeper
2Josh Strassheim Defender
3Sam Hedley 15 Defender 28'
4Alex Francis Midfielder 42', 72'
5Callum Turnbull Defender
6Liam Wotherspoon Midfielder 83'
7Lewis Orrell Midfielder
8Glen Hargrave 12 Forward
9Aidan Rutledge Forward 2', 69'
10Callum Smith 14 Forward
11Tom McIntyre 13 Midfielder 52'
12Matty Ward 8 Forward
13Andrew Clarkson 11 Forward
14Kevin Mirzakhanian 10 Midfielder
15Josh Holland 3 Defender
16Owen Lancaster Defender
Yellow Cards
Red Cards
Sin Bin
Own Goal
Player of the Match

KO KO 2 12 28 42 52 63 69 69 69 72 75 76 78 83 89 FT