Words: Alex Birch; Pictures: Stefan Willoughby
The Magpies gave up the Vanarama National League North top spot as Blyth made it seven wins on the spin on a tough day at Victory Park.
The Magpies made three changes to the team that outplayed Darlington last weekend as Danny Eccles, Josh Wilson & new loan signing Lewis Baines came in.
Spartans made two swaps from their FA Trophy victory at Lancaster with Aaron Cunningham & Kieran Green coming in.
Chorley: Eccles; Challoner, Blakeman, Teague (c), Baines (Hooper, 75′), Jordan, A.Newby, O’Keefe, Carver, Wilson (Almond, 73′), E.Newby. Subs not used: Cottrell, Meppen-Walter, Lee.
Blyth Spartans: Jameson; Cunningham (Rivers, 68′), Liddle, Mullen (c), Buddle, J.Watson, Horner, Oliver, Maguire (Fewster, 89′), Reid, Green (Holmes, 68′). Subs not used: Nicholson, I.Watson
The Magpies dominated the first half, creating numerous chances but failing to take advantage despite keeping Blyth ‘keeper Pete Jameson busy. The pattern was set for the majority of the half, before a long ball on 38 minutes undid the Chorley backline, culminating in Danny Eccles taking down Daniel Maguire in the area. Sean Reid dispatched the spot kick with ease, and as Chorley pushed for an equaliser the visitors broke away and scored a second through top scorer Maguire, whose finish from the angle of the box was sublime.
The home side’s response was instant as Andy Teague’s cross was headed back across goal and into the net by Josh O’Keefe as time expired.
Blyth came out for the second half in determined mood but didn’t really threaten Eccles’s goal, and after a succession of home corners The Magpies finally found a way through when Blakeman’s short ball was fired home from the edge of the box by an unmarked Elliot Newby.
With the game in the balance and goalmouth action suddenly at a premium, out of blue Maguire hit the deck and won a second penalty for the visitors. This time sub Jamie Holmes sent Eccles the wrong way.
Then, adding insult to injury, Holmes grabbed his second to finish the game off after Jarrett Rivers did his best Lionel Messi impression, beating four Chorley players on route to the assist.
Man of the match chosen by Price & Price Building Ltd, Neave Utilities Ltd & Magpie Ultras: Josh O’Keefe
That’s what he said
That’s probably the most disappointed I’ve been after a game this season. I thought the penalty decisions were dubious and we probably should have got something out of the game but ultimately we didn’t – Jamie Vermiglio
HT 1-2 / FT 2-4
Goals: O’Keefe (45’+1), E.Newby (55′); Reid (38′ pen), Maguire (44′), Holmes (74′ pen, 82′)
Cautions: Carver (61′), O’Keefe (66′), A.Newby (72′); Mullen (22′), Jameson (57′), Holmes (86′)
Referee: Matt Corlett
Assistants: Oliver Noonan & Daniel Bruce
Weather: Mild & dry
A Boxing Day tussle with FC United at Broadhurst Park (3pm) followed by another visit to Greater Manchester on Saturday when we take on Curzon Ashton at the Tameside Stadium (3pm).
Wednesday’s game with FC United is ALL TICKET for away fans. The club shop is open 11am-3pm on Christmas Eve for ticket sales and any last minute Christmas shopping!