Newcastle Benfield vs Birtley Town


Newcastle Benfield

  • Connor Walker - 1 (59') goal(s)

Birtley Town

  • Scott Heslop - 2 (85', 86') goal(s)
Sat 11 Nov 2023 | 3:00 pm
Newcastle Benfield


Scott Heslop produced a quick fire double to give Birtley all three points against Newcastle Benfield on Saturday. 

The Hoops left it really late to secure the points in a fierce contest in the East End. It was Birtley’s first fixture in 21 days with numerous postponements due to the ongoing bad weather. The Hoops were without Kyle Wharton who has picked up an injury and Alex Francis who was attending the birth of his new baby boy. 

The first half was a close encounter with neither side creating any clear chances in the opening period. Liam Wotherspoon fired over the bar from a long range free-kick after 15 minutes before the game was paused due to an arm injury to Benfield defender Alfie Hyde. Everyone at the club wishes Alfie well with his recovery. Benfield were causing the visitors problems with neat play in midfield and a couple of fizzing long range efforts were well dealt with by Alfie Gordon. Gordon then denied Jay Errington’s downward header. Birtley had a penalty shout late in the first period as Callum Turnbull looked to be pushed in the back from a Callum Smith corner. The half-time whistle shortly followed in a well matched opening period.  

HALF TIME | Newcastle Benfield 0 – 0 Birtley Town

The second half started with tempers flaring from both sides. It was Benfield who took the lead. The hosts broke down the right-hand side through Connor Walker and his cross deflected off both Sam Hedley and Callum Turnbull before finding it’s way off Alfie Gordon and into the empty net. The goal lifted Benfield and they dominated the period following the opener. The Hoops made a series of changes to try and change the course of the game with Stephen Hall, Lewis Orrell and Matty Ward replacing Drew Lake, Callum Smith and Jack Robson. 

Birtley pilled on the pressure and went very direct in their approach. Stephen Hall and Scott Heslop were beginning to find little pockets of space while crosses and throw-ins bombarded the Benfield goal. The pressure eventually paid off when a long Sam Hedley throw-in seemed to deflect off a number of players before Scott Heslop prodded home. Within just 18 seconds of the restart, Birtley had turned the game on it’s head. Sam Hedley found Stephen Hall who held the ball up while inviting pressure from Benfield. Hally then managed to slip through Scott Heslop who took one touch before firing a sensational curling effort into the far corner from around 20 yards. 

There was a late push from Benfield before Connor Walker was sent off for a second yellow card. 

FULL TIME | Newcastle Benfield 1 – 2 Birtley Town

A fierce and hard fought game in which both sides deserve credit. A moment of class from Scott Heslop proving the difference between the two sides. 

Attendance – 225 including a sizeable following from Birtley. Both teams paid respect to members of the armed services for a minute’s silence before the game. 

Credit to Newcastle Benfield.

Player of the Match – Scott Heslop

H2H v Benfield

31.10.2018 Newcastle Benfield 2 0 Birtley Town League Cup | Round 2 93

Manager’s Corner

Manager Paul Bryson was delighted with a brilliant team performance. “We were hit with late news about missing Kyle Wharton and obviously Alex missing due to family reasons. We had to adjust our plans but the lads were excellent. It was a real Northern League performance. We had to dig in to get a result, it makes it so much better when you win this way. The first half was fairly even. They had a numerical advantage in the middle of the pitch and we had to try and combat that. Alfie made a couple of good saves from difficult long range efforts. I thought we had a good shout for a penalty, I was just expecting Callum Turnbull to head home before he looked to be pushed over. 

“I through we started the second half well before conceding a goal. Again we had chances to clear our lines and we were punished. We had a couple of chances through Smiggs and Jack Robson but it wasn’t to be. The biggest part of the game was the impact of the substitutions. Wardy and Lewis Orrell helped us with their cleverness alongside Hally with his presence. I was delighted with their impact. Hezzy was on the spot for the first one and then to instantly score another. Within 20 seconds Hally has done brilliant and it’s a brilliant finish. That it was Scott Heslop is about.”

“We managed the game well and we are delighted with the win.”

Next up…

Birtley travel to West Auckland in the 2nd round of the Durham FA Challenge Cup



Date Time League Season
Sat 11 Nov 2023 3:00 pm Northern League D1 2023-24


Newcastle Benfield
Newcastle Benfield Football Club, Sam Smith's Park, NE6 4NW


Team1st Half2nd HalfGoals
Newcastle Benfield011
Birtley Town022

Birtley Town

1Alfie Gordon Goalkeeper
2Josh Strassheim Defender
3Sam Hedley Defender
4Liam Wotherspoon Midfielder
5Owen Lancaster Defender
6Callum Turnbull Defender
7Jack Robson 14 Midfielder
8Ben Pentland Defender
9Scott Heslop Forward 85', 86'
10Callum Smith 15 Forward
11Drew Lake 12 Midfielder
12Stephen Hall 11 Forward
13John Mordey Goalkeeper
14Lewis Orrell 7 Midfielder
15Matty Ward 10 Forward
16James Proctor Midfielder
Yellow Cards
Red Cards
Sin Bin
Own Goal
Player of the Match

KO KO 24 36 53 59 63 70 70 76 85 86 86 89 91 91 92 FT