West Auckland v Birtley Town


West Auckland Town

  • Will Constantin - 2 (62', 78') goal(s)

Birtley Town

  • Alex Francis - 1 (16') goal(s)
  • James Proctor - 1 (82') goal(s)
Tue 21 Nov 2023 | 7:30 pm
West Auckland Town


Birtley crashed out of the Durham Challenge Cup after losing a pulsating game on penalties. 

The Hoops crashed out of the Durham Challenge Cup with a 4-3 defeat on penalties after the sides had drawn 2-2 in normal time. West started the better of the two sides and should of been ahead through Will Constantin in the 11th minute however he missed the target after good work from Charlie Wood. James Harrison then had an effort on goal from the edge of the area before Birtley started to threaten. A long Glen Hargrave throw-in found it’s way to Alex Francis who fired the ball beyond Nick Liversedge to give Birtley a 16th minute lead. 

Birtley had opportunities to double their lead. Callum Smith cut in from the left but his right footed effort went beyond the far post. Glen Hargrave then chased down a long ball and rounded the keeper. Hargrave was left with a tight angle and he drilled the ball across the empty goal but Liam Wotherspoon was just a fraction too late. West had opportunities in the latter stages through Harrison and an excellent intervention from Josh Strassheim prevented a certain equaliser. 

HALF TIME | West Auckland 0 – 1 Birtley Town

West Auckland started the second half and piled on the pressure looking for an equaliser. That pressure paid off on 62 minutes when an unmarked Will Constantin headed home from a corner. Auckland thought they were ahead but Alfie Gordon superbly stopped Harrison when he was baring down on goal. West did take the lead on 78 minutes with Constantin getting his second goal from yet another corner. 

Credit to Phil Sage for the image.

Birtley made a series of changes to try and claw themselves back into the tie. It was a trio of substitutes who combined for the equaliser. Jack Robson carried the ball forward before finding debutant Ashton Wright. Wright then found the oncoming James Proctor who coolly finished into the bottom corner to take the game to penalties. 

FULL TIME | West Auckland 2 – 2 Birtley Town

Scott Heslop stepped up to take first penalty of the shoot-out however his effort was well saved by Liversedge. The scores remained 0-0 after Heggarty dragged his penalty wide for West Auckland. Liam Wotherspoon then sent his penalty over the crossbar. Alfie Gordon had looked to deny Josh Scott but the assistant referee ordered a re-take to which Scott gladly tucked away. Birtley scored their remaining penalties through Callum Turnbull, James Proctor and Alex Francis but West held their nerve to win 4-3 and book their place in the last eight. 

PENALTIES | West Auckland 4 – 3 Birtley Town

Attendance – 132

Player of the Match – Josh Strassheim

Manager’s Corner

Paul Bryson reflected on a pulsating cup tie “The pitch was heavy and considering the conditions I thought both sides give it a right good do. I was really pleased with the performance. We took the lead through Alex and played really well first half both defensively and going forward. We were fairly happy at half-time but West started the second half well.  We are disappointed with the two goals we have conceded as they are both from set pieces. That is unlike us so we were disappointed. I was really pleased with the impact of the substitutes again, we scored a great goal to take the tie to penalties. 
“You can flip a coin with penalties. We had three penalty shoot-outs last season and we won the two most important ones in the play-offs. This one didn’t go our way. We said at the start  of the season that we wanted to be competitive when playing against good side, we certainly were last night.”
“There were some real plus points. I thought Josh Strassheim was excellent and he’s still a young lad. Proc got some minutes under his belt too. It was a heavy pitch so we are pleased to have not picked up any injuries. Another huge plus point was Ashton Wright coming on from the Development side. It’s a real plus point for the club, it proves there is a pathway through the club. I am sure there will be a couple of others who step up the the 1st team this season.”
Credit to Phil Sage for the image.

H2H vs West Auckland Town (all games/competitions)

7 W1 D1 L5 GF9 GA25

10.01.2006 | West Auckland Town 2-0 Birtley Town – DCC Quarter Final (N/A)
02.10.2010 | West Auckland Town 6-0 Birtley Town – FA Vase R1 (N/A)
25.08.2012 | Birtley Town 1-4 West Auckland Town – FA Cup Preliminary (D. Smart)
30.10.2012 | West Auckland Town (5) 3-3 (4) Birtley Town – DCC R1 (Dan Smith, S. Telford, M. Hornsby)
08.10.2013 | West Auckland Town 3-1 Birtley Town – League Cup R1 – (D. Reaks)
28.04.2021 | Birtley Town 1-6 West Auckland Town – DCC SF – (J. Barwick)
| West Auckland 1-3 Birtley Town – League – (O. Lancaster, L. Wotherspoon, B. Pentland)

Next up…

Birtley travel to Crook Town on Saturday in a 3pm kick-off. 




Date Time League Season
Tue 21 Nov 2023 7:30 pm Durham Challenge Cup 2023-24


West Auckland Town
Wanted Stadium, West Auckland, DL14 9AQ


Team1st Half2nd HalfGoals
West Auckland Town022
Birtley Town112

Birtley Town

1Alfie Gordon Goalkeeper
2Josh Strassheim 16 Defender
3Sam Hedley Defender
4Liam Wotherspoon Midfielder
5Alex Francis Midfielder 16'
6Callum Turnbull Defender
7Glen Hargrave 15 Forward
8Ben Pentland 12 Defender
9Scott Heslop Forward
10Stephen Hall 17 Forward 32'
11Callum Smith 14 Forward
12Jack Robson 8 Midfielder
14Drew Lake 11 Midfielder
15James Proctor 7 Midfielder 82'
16Owen Lancaster 2 Defender
17Ashton Wright 10 Forward
Yellow Cards
Red Cards
Sin Bin
Own Goal
Player of the Match

KO KO 16 32 62 67 73 73 73 78 81 82 84 89 FT