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Newcastle Blue Star 2 - 1 Chester le Street Town (22/04/2024)

Blue Star win it at the death against Chester Le-Street. 

Blue Star lined up to face Chester Le Street in what was their final home game of the season. With both teams looking for a win for different reasons the stage was set for a tight affair. Two hundred and forty-nine in attendance and with Blue Star in their black and white stripes, the game was ready to kick off. 

After just two minutes, an early scare for the home side, as Chester Le-street’s forward forced a big save from Phil Mills in between the sticks. The forward found space in the box and unleashed a left footed strike to the right of the goal, however Mills got down well to deny the visitors and early opener. 

After the early test in the opening minutes the game began relatively quietly with The Star having the majority of the ball. However, after, seventeen minutes Mills was forced into action again for Blue Star pushing away an effort from the away sides free kick. His save was then cleared but only as far as the visitor's opposing winger who delivered a cross to an unmarked Chester Le Street player who headed into the roof of the net to open the scoring. Not the start Blue Star wanted, and it was a good job manager Marc Nash was unable to be in attendance as he would’ve been furious. 

Blue Star responded to their early deficit by maintaining the possession, but they were struggling to create as forward Dan Lanning was marked tightly by too tall centre halves. The first real opportunity came from Tom Potter, as he found space on the edge of the box and hit a viscous strike towards goal. His effort looked fairly routine for the goalkeeper, however the venom on the strike caused the ball to slip through the keepers' hands and roll towards the line. Luckily for him, the goalkeeper managed to scramble back and recover despite the claims that the ball had crossed the line. 

Despite their lack of possession Chester Le-Street continued to be dangerous going forward. The away side won a corner and proceeded to take it short, which then lead to an effort from outside the box that crashed off the bar. Yet another scare for Blue Star which would’ve been against the run of play. 

Apart from a few tame efforts towards goal, it was a disappointing first half for Blue Star and as the whistle went for half time, they found themselves 1-0 down at the break. 

The second half began in the same way, with blue Star putting dangerous crosses in but unable to turn them goal-wards. Winger Dan Turner was getting a lot of the ball out wide but without a real physical presence up front, there wasn’t too much to aim at. 

Sixty minutes saw the first changes for Blue Star who still trailed and were looking for those all-important goals. Regan Patterson replaced Turner and continued to get joy in the same way. 

Time was beginning to run out for Blue Star, until substitute Regan Patterson won a dangerous free kick on the eighty-minute mark, when he was bundled over on the edge of the box. Up stepped in form striker Dan Lanning, who placed the ball high into the top left corner to equalise. His eighth goal in four games and a massive equaliser for Blue Star. 

Blue Star had their tails up with around ten minutes to go and it looked as though that equaliser had given them momentum. With just five left to play, Newcastle counter attacked Chester Le-Street as Dan Lanning lead the charge. He found the run of substitute Regan Patterson who was baring down on goal one on one. Patterson took the ball round the keeper, and it looked like Blue Star had themselves a winner, however his shot was headed off the line to the despair of The Star fans. 

Just when you thought that was it, in the fifth minute of stoppage time, striker Dan Lanning began to press as he had done all game. His tireless work, which is pivotal to the Star, finally paid off, as he took the ball of the centre back. Lanning won the ball in the opposing box, took one look up and finished calmly into the bottom left corner. This sparked jubilation from the home crowd and the Blue Star bench as Lanning knee slid before being swarmed by teammates. Blue Star won the game with the last kick of the game giving them a 2-1 victory.  

An important victory again for The Star who look to end the season in second place to give themselves two home ties in the play offs. Dan Lanning goes into the final two games on 9 goals in 4 games, a brilliant time to find his form. Blue Star now look towards their final two games against Chester Le-Street United and Thornaby.  

Written by Alex Waters.


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