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Newcastle Blue Star 4 - 0 Billingham Town (12/04/2024)

Lanning Stars in emphatic Blue Star win. 

After the rain had finally stopped and some hard work from the groundsmen, Blue Stars Friday night fixture was given the green light to go ahead. Three hundred and eleven supporters came through the gates to watch the fixture against Billingham Town, who last time out were on the receiving end of a 0-5 defeat at the hands of Marc Nash’s men.  

The game started off brightly for The Star as they controlled the ball and had the majority of the possession. The home side seemed to be looking to play direct towards striker Dan Lanning with some early balls from Tom Bexton at centre half. Blue Star began to show promising signs down their right-hand side, as Rio Joisce and Harry Barclay combined and delivered the ball into the box finding Lanning’s head, who’s effort went just over with only four minutes on the clock. 

The next opportunity fell after fourteen minutes to midfielder Tom Mcintyre who found space on the edge of the box and fired a shot to the right-hand side of the goal, which was saved out for a corner by the Billingham goalkeeper. 

The game seemed to be all Blue Star as they continued to come forward and attack the Billingham defence, and on twenty-seven minutes, Star’s striker, Lanning, took the ball past two defenders onto his left foot but again lashed the ball over. Just four minutes later Newcastle’s right back Barclay found space again and delivered a dangerous cross to the back post which was flicked out for a corner.  

With ten minutes left of the half Blue Star were really pushing for the opener and midfielder Connor Oliver had a concession of shots which were blocked & fired just wide, and then shortly after, saved by the keeper. No luck for Blue Star in the first half as the referee blew his whistle for half time at 0-0.  

The lads started the second half in the same fashion, pushing for a goal, and a massive chance fell for Tom Mcintyre just two minutes after kick off as the ball came to him in the box, however his shot flashed wide much to the disappointment of manager Marc Nash. Just minutes later Mcintyre made up for his mistake, after his bursting run into the box was found by Dan Lanning, the forward pulled the ball back and Mcintyre lifted the ball over the on rushing goalkeeper, and into the top corner from around 10 yards out.

The opener had been coming for Blue Star and Mcintyre was relieved to finally put them 1-0 up. 

Another opportunity came for the home side minutes later, Blue Star played a long ball over the top and the Billingham keeper tried to head it clear, however his header fell short to striker Lanning, but his effort was blocked by the Billingham defender, it looked as though it wasn’t the striker's day.  

However, that couldn’t be more wrong as Rio Joisce found Lanning on the edge of the box who then unleashed a strike with his left foot which crashed off the bar, bounced off the floor and into the roof of the net. A fantastic, well-deserved goal that put Blue Star 2-0 up. 

After 73 minutes came the first scare for the home team as Billingham put the ball into the box and a free header at the back post forced a first save from Millis, however the Blue Star #1 caught it comfortably. 

At the other end Blue Star continued to threaten down the right as Harry Barclay combined with Joisce and delivered his cross which was met on the volley by Lanning who smashed the ball past the keeper and into the net. A second for Lanning and a third for Blue Star who in that goal had nine different players involved with a total of 15 passes.  

After 85 minutes Lanning found space on the edge of the box and looking for his hattrick he fired his shot to the right of the goal which was saved by the goalkeeper. One final chance came for Lanning to get his much desired third goal as a foul on the edge of the box gave Blue Star a dangerous free kick. Lanning stood over the free kick then smashed the ball past the keeper into the left-hand corner, completing a brilliant hat trick. A brilliant 4-0 win for Blue Star who now look forward to their game away at Boldon before they then play 4 games in 7 days as they look to confirm their playoff place.  

Report by Alex Waters.




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