North-East Football Live: Saturday, January 11

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4:54pm

Hartlepool 0 Rochdale 3 

Defence cut open too easily and sub Donnelly taps in - second 3-0 home defeat in a row for Pools on the cards. 

4:54pm

Fulham 1

Sunderland 4

Full-time - and what a result that was.

Adam Johnson was the hat-trick hero, with his three goals inspiring Sunderland to their second away win of the campaign.

Ki was equally excellent, and while Sunderland remain bottom, the result means they have closed to within a point of safety.

4:53pm

Harrogate RA 0 Darlington 2

Goals from Tait and Thompson. DFC's eighth win in nine games, but they remain fourth.

4:45pm

Harrogate RA 0 Darlington 2
Fisher shot saved by keeper’s foot. Crook has stopped it being a much larger scoereline. 85mins.

4:45pm

Fulham 1

Sunderland 4 (Johnson pen, 85)

What a way to seal the win.

Johnson completes his hat-trick from the spot after Senderos is penalised for a foul on Altidore.

The winger claimed the ball, and calmly rolled home his third goal of the afternoon.

4:40pm

Harrogate RA 0 Darlington 2
Purewal header following a corner saved on the line by Crook and the follow-up shot by Davis was wide. 80mins.

4:29pm

Fulham 1

Sunderland 3 (Johnson 69)

Sunderland restore their two-goal lead thanks to a brilliant counter-attacking goal.

Altidore played the ball to Ki, and the South Korean threaded a fantastic pass behind the full-back.

Johnson raced on to it, and slotted an excellent first-time finish through the goalkeeper's legs.

4:26pm

Harrogate RA 0 Darlington 2
Scramble in the Harrogate penalty area, cleared off the line by Thirkell. 66mins gone.

4:25pm

Harrogate RA 0 Darlington 2

Official attendance here is: 1,026. Incredible support for Darlington. Just to put that crowd into perspective, Harrogate's total attendance figure before today was 1,217 and the average was 94.

4:25pm

Hartlepool 0 Rochdale 2

One hell of a strike from Cavanagh - and Pools are two goals down at home. 

He ran onto the ball on the edge of the area and wellied it into the corner. Flinders got something to it, but not enough to keep it out

4:24pm

Fulham 1 Sunderland 2

This is a really good game now, with Fulham throwing more and more men forward in search of an equaliser and Sunderland trying to hit them on the break.

Stockdale turned Cattermole's deflected shot around the post, before Fletcher headed Johnson's cross over the bar.

That was Fletcher's last real input, as he's been replaced by Altidore.

4:12pm

Hartlepool 0 Rochdale 1

48 minutes, corner from the right, Donnelly hit it, shot blocked, rebounded back off Donnelly and beyond Flinders. 

A scrappy goal for a scrappy game. 

4:12pm

 

Fulham 1 (Sidwell 52)

Sunderland 2

SUnderland concede within seven minutes of the restart - and it's a really poor goal to give away.

Duff delivers a corner from the right, and Sidwell runs between Cattermole and Alonso to head home from close range unopposed.

From a position of strength, Sunderland suddenly find themselves in a real battle.

 

4:11pm

Harrogate RA 0 Darlington 2
Joe Tait heads wide after meeting a Terry Galbraith free-kick.

4:05pm

Harrogate RA 0 Darlington 2

Not had it confirmed by Harrogate, but been told attendance is 845. That would mean around 700 Darlington fans here. Second half has just started.

3:49pm

Fulham 0

Sunderland 2

Half-time, and Sunderland deservedly lead 2-0.

That's an excellent first half from the Black Cats, with the in-form Johnson undoubtedly the star of the show.

3:49pm

Harrogate RA 0 Darlington 2

Goals: Tait 8mins, Thompson 44mins.

3:48pm

Hartlepool 0 Rochdale 0

Not much else to say really !

3:48pm

Harrogate RA 0 Darlington 2
A well-worked goal makes it 2-0, Stephen Thompson scoring on 44 minutes. Several players involved in the build-up before a pass into the penalty area by Terry Galbraith was headed by Amar Purewal to Thompson who volleyed home emphatically.

3:47pm

Fulham 0 Sunderland 2

Sunderland's second might well go down as a Senderos own goal.

Looks like Stockdale saved Ki's initial shot, but the ball cannoned off Senderos and went in.

3:43pm

Fulham 0

Sunderland 2 (Ki 41)

After an excellent ten minutes or so, Sunderland deservedly double their lead.

Riise conceded a free-kick with a dreadful foul on Borini, and was somewhat lucky to stay on the field.

Sunderland dished out some punishment of their own though, with Johnson rolling the ball to Ki, who swept home a first-time strike via a deflection off Senderos.

It was clearly a rehearsed training-ground routine - and it worked a treat.

3:40pm

Harrogate RA 0 Darlington 1
Darlington have had enough chances to put this game out of sight. Thompson has just put another one over the bar. 39mins.

3:39pm

Harrogate RA 0 Darlington 1
Fine save by Peter Crook keeps it at 1-0, leaping to his left to keep out a Stephen Thompson shot following Joe Tait’s dinked pass over the top. From the second of two Terry Galbraith corners that followed, Jordan Robinson whacked the ball off the stanchion behind the goal holding the net up.

3:32pm

3:31pm

Fulham 0

Sunderland 1 (Johnson 29)

Sunderland break the deadlock thanks to an excellent free-kick from Johnson.

The winger won the free-kick himself, although he seemed to go down easily under minimal contact from Sidwell.

There's no quibbling about the quality of the finish though, with Johnson curling a brilliant strike into the top right-hand corner.

3:31pm

Hartlepool 0 Rochdale 0

It's been 15 mins before any sort of action in a very tame opening.

Free-kick from Richards lifted over the Dale defensive wall onto the bar. Burgess was there for the follow up, but didn't hit it true enough and the ball was blocked on the line.

3:30pm

Harrogate RA 0 Darlington 1
Great tackle by Harrogate’s Wood, taking the ball off Dowson’s tie as he met Hopson’s pass over the top of the defence. Was a lovely pass from the play-maker too.

3:28pm

Harrogate RA 0 Darlington 1
David Dowson nearly makes it 2-0. His hard work had earned him the chance, taking the ball off a defender, and after receiving the ball back from Dale Hopson he cut inside Simon Wood but the shot was blasted over the bar. 26mins.

3:26pm

Fulham 0 Sunderland 0

Sunderland are still being their own worst enemies in defence. This time it was Colback giving the ball away in his own half, and Mannone had to be at his most alert to beat out Taarabt's near-post effort.

3:23pm

Fulham 0 Sunderland 0

Sunderland's first chance sees Phil Bardsley drill in a decent effort from 20 yards, but Fulham keeper David Stockdale keeps it out.

They then create a better opening, but after O'Shea heads Johnson's free-kick back across goal, Fletcher heads over the bar after beating Stockdale to the ball. The striker really should have done better.

3:22pm

Harrogate RA 0 Darlington 1
Not long after Tait’s goal, Amar Purewal tested keeper Peter Crook, who saved the shot taken from inside the penalty area. So far o good for Darlington, who are not being threatened by the 12th placed hosts.

3:20pm

Harrogate RA 0 Darlington 1
Harrogate RA, without Nathan Cartman who has joined Harrogate Town, have started with a centre-back playing up front in Jon Maloney.

3:20pm

Harrogate RA 0 Darlington 1
What a way to mark his return, a goal after eight minutes for Joe Tait. Wasn’t really a clean connection, but shot from 12 yards after a pass from the right was enough to beat the keeper.

3:11pm

Fulham 0 Sunderland 0

A big let off for Sunderland as Brown concedes possession really cheaply in his own half, but Berbatov fails to convert Riether's cross.

Sloppy from the defender, who had time, but produced a dreadful first touch.

At the other end, Riether covers well to prevent Borini slotting in Colback.

3:07pm

Fulham 0 Sunderland 0

Fulham have started the brighter, with Sidwell and Parker seeing plenty of the ball at the heart of midfield.

The first chance came from a Taarabt corner, but Berbatov's weak downward header was easily claimed by Mannone.

3:01pm

Fulham 0 Sunderland 0

We're under way at Craven Cottage, with Sunderland lining up in a 4-1-4-1 formation as expected.

The visiting fans gave Darren Bent a loud booing as his name was read out prior to kick off.

2:56pm

Harrogate RA v Darlington

Harrogate RA: Crook, Thirkwell, L Hunter, Wood, Morris, Dixon, Youhill, Metcalfe, Sellars, Radcliffe. Subs: C Hunter, Ibrahimi, Bromley, Kidd, Jordan

Darlington: Bell; Harrison, Hunter, White, Galbraith; Tait, Robinson, Hopson; Thompson; Purewal, Dowson. Subs: Jameson (gk), Weldon, Davis, Johnson, Fisher

2:56pm

Harrogate RA v Darlington

Joe Tait rejoined Darlington yesterday and returns to the line-up for today’s game at Harrogate RA as one of two changes.

Dale Hopson also comes into the line-up at the expense of Jonny Davis, who drops to the bench. Tait takes the place of Leon Scott who begins a three-match ban.

Harrogate are without leading scorer Nathan Cartman, a 13-goal striker who yesterday joined neighbours Harrogate Town.

In front of the large travelling support that has followed Quakers to Station View, Darlington aiming to continue their good form by making it eight wins in nine games.

Harrogate are 12th  but managed a 0-0 draw at Heritage Park earlier in the season.

2:55pm

Harrogate RA v Darlington

The chap announcing the teams here at @THERAILFC is, shall we, say a bit odd. Seems a bit excited. Waiting for LET'S GETTING READY TO RUMBLE!

2:50pm

Blackpool v Middlesbrough

He's not 62. He's 39.

2:50pm

Blackpool v Middlesbrough

Little fact for you from today's hosts. They have named two players on the bench - Henry Cameron and Mark Waddington - who played in an Under-18 game for Blackpool this morning, as well as goalkeeping coach Tony Warner, who I believe is 62.

2:46pm

2:40pm

Blackpool v Middlesbrough

Hello from a predictably windy and chilly Bloomfield Road.

Your big team news is that Kenneth Omeruo, Boro's on-loan defender signed this week from Chelsea, and the subject of a fairly lengthy feature in today's Northern Echo - you can see where I'm going here - is NOT involved in Aitor Karanka's matchday XI. He's not even in the squad. I'm not sure whether he even travelled down. Or, if he has, maybe he was enticed by Blackpool's famed nightlife and has simply just sacked it off.

Having parked up earlier and wandering around Blackpool's faded seafront for a good half-hour, I bet Omeruo hasn't been tempted to partake in the city's extra-curricular activities.

Anyway, team news.

BLACKPOOL: Gilks, Robinson, Mackenzie, Ince, Bishop, Ferguson, Basham, Fuller, Cathcart, Barkhuizen, Martinez. Subs: Warner, Davies, Caton, Eccleston, Harris, Cameron, Waddington.

MIDDLESBROUGH (4-2-3-1): Given; Varga, Williams, Ayala, Friend; Whitehead, Leadbitter; Adomah, Ledesma, Emnes; Jutkiewicz. Subs: Dimi, Richardson, Butterfield, Carayol, Gibson, Main, Smallwood.

2:39pm

Fulham vs Sunderland

Craven Cottage looking as quaint and appealing as ever - speak to most North-East fans, and this tends to be their favourite London trip.

A couple of beers outside Putney Bridge Station, a nice stroll along the bank of the Thames and then into a ground that hasn't changed much since the pre-Premier League days.

That's my routine anyway......minus the beers unfortunately.

2:30pm

Hartlepool v Rochdale

Two changes for Pools - Walton in for Dolan and Richards in for Duckworth.

The right-back is injured, suffering a thigh strain which has forced him out. 

HARTLEPOOL UNITED: Flinders; Richards, Baldwin, Burgess, Austin; Walker, Walton; Franks, Poole, Monkhouse; James. Subs: Rafferty (gk), Collins, Compton, Sweeney, Holden, Rodney, Hawkins.
ROCHDALE: Lillis; Bennett, Cavanagh, Vincenti, Hogan, Lund, Done, O’Connell, Rose, Henderson. Subs: Thomson, Rafferty, Eastham, Donnelly, Allen, Cummins, Bunney.
Referee: Ray Lewis (Shrewsbury)

2:23pm

2:22pm

Fulham vs Sunderland

Sunderland boss Gustavo Poyet has made two changes to Sunderland's starting line-up for today's game at Fulham.

Jack Colback and Adam Johnson come into the side after starting Tuesday's Capital One Cup semi-final win over Manchester United on the bench.

Colback replaces Seb Larsson, and is expected to play alongside Lee Cattermole at the base of midfield.

Johnson, who produced an excellent second-half cameo in the week, is preferred to Emmanuele Giaccherini, with the Italian winger dropping down to the bench.

Fulham give a start to Clint Dempsey as he begins his second spell at Craven Cottage, but former Sunderland striker Darren Bent is only named among the Cottagers' substitutes.

FULHAM (4-4-1-1): Stockdale; Riether, Senderos, Amorebieta, Riise; Duff, Parker, Sidwell, Dempsey; Taarabt; Berbatov.

Subs: Etheridge (gk), Kasami, Kacaniklic, Richardson, Hughes, Dejagah, Bent.

SUNDERLAND (4-2-3-1): Mannone; Bardsley, Brown, O'Shea, Alonso; Cattermole, Colback; Johnson, Ki, Borini; Fletcher.

Subs: Pickford (gk), Larsson, Gardner, Celustka, Altidore, Giaccherini, Ji.

2:14pm

Welcome to another action-packed afternoon of live football. We've got the best live coverage of all the North-East action, with Sunderland, Middlesbrough, Hartlepool and Darlington all in action.

Sunderland have travelled to London for a crucial game against Fulham at Craven Cottage. Brilliant in the cups but all over the place in the league, Gus Poyet's side cannot afford another slip up this afternoon.

In the Championship, Middlesbrough have travelled to the seaside to take on a Blackpool side reeling from the loss of a host of loan players this week.

Hartlepool are at home to Rochdale in League Two, while Darlington travel to Harrogate RA as they look to keep the pressure on Curzon Ashton at the top of the Evo-Stick League table.

5:39pm

Darlington and Stockton Times:

Newcastle subs: Elliot (gk), S Taylor, Dummett, Obertan, Ben Arfa, Shola Ameobi, Cisse
Man City subs: Pantilimon (gk), Kolarov, Richards, Lescott, Garcia, Milner, Dzeko

NEWCASTLE TEAM NEWS

Newcastle are without Mathieu Debuchy, who is suspended following his dismissal at West Brom, and Fabricio Coloccini, who is nursing a knee injury. Davide Santon faces a late fitness test on a thigh problem, but is expected to  be fit, while Tim Krul and Yohan Cabaye are both available after missing last weekend’s FA Cup defeat to Cardiff. 

MANCHESTER CITY TEAM NEWS

Man City are without Sergio Aguero (calf), but Yaya Toure and Jesus Navas are available after recent injury concerns.

Referee: Mike Jones (Chester)
Odds: Newcastle 17-4, Draw 3-1, Man City 7-10
It’s a fact: Manchester City are unbeaten in their last 14 Premier League matches against Newcastle, winning the last eight.

Comment by SCOTT WILSON: With Newcastle deprived of two members of their first-choice back four, this is not the time to be facing an in-form Manchester City.

Prediction: 0-2

5:34pm

Darlington and Stockton Times:

Fulham subs: Bettinelli (gk), Amorebieta, Richardson, Kasami, Kacaniklic, Dejagah, Bent
Sunderland subs: Dixon (gk), Celustka, Altidore, Colback, Gardner, Johnson, Ji

SUNDERLAND TEAM NEWS

Steven Fletcher is fit despite being forced off against Manchester United with a knock.

FULHAM TEAM NEWS

Rene Meulensteen has nearly a fully fit squad to choose from with Brede Hangeland the only senior player currently in the treatment room.

Referee: Mike Dean (Wirral)
Odds: H: 6/5, D: 23/10, A: 12/5
It’s a fact: Sunderland’s record league victory away to Fulham came on their first ever visit to Craven Cottage – a 3-0 win in April 1950.

Comment by STEPH CLARK: The Black Cats have to start taking points from the teams around them and today presents the ideal opportunity for Gus Poyet’s side to do that.

Prediction: 1-2

5:32pm

Darlington and Stockton Times:

Pools subs: Rafferty (gk), Collins, Richards, Compton, Holden, Sweeney, Rodney
Dale subs: Rafferty, Eastham, Donnelly, Thomson, Allen, Cummins, Dicker

HARTLEPOOL TEAM NEWS

Pools are without Matty Dolan after he returned to Middlesbrough, which means a recall for Simon Walton in midfield. Jack Compton and Jordan Richards are both fit after injury.

ROCHDALE TEAM NEWS

Dale are likely to stick with the same team that beat Leeds in the FA Cup last weekend.

Odds: H 13/8; D 12/5; A 15/8
Referee: Rob Lewis (Shrewsbury)
It’s a fact: The teams have met in the Football League on more occasions than any others.

Comment by NICK LOUGHLIN: The key for Pools is to get ahead in a game and not have to come from behind. They are up against one of the division’s fancied teams today

Prediction: 1-1

1:58pm

Darlington and Stockton Times:

Blackpool subs: Warner (gk), Harris, Davies, Angel, Caton, Eccleston, Dobbie
Middlesbrough subs: Konstantopoulos (gk), R Williams, Gibson, Butterfield, Smallwood, Ledesma, Jutkiewicz.

BLACKPOOL TEAM NEWS

Blackpool boss Paul Ince must decide whether to play his son, Tom, who is the subject of sustained speculation linking him with a £4m move to Swansea. With the Seasiders tightening their belts, this week has seen five loan players – Tyler Blackett, Nathan Delfouneso, Dan Gosling, Bradley Orr and Marvin Zeegelaar – all return to their parent clubs.

MIDDLESBROUGH TEAM NEWS

Middlesbrough manager Aitor Karanka will hand a debut to Kenneth Omeruo, who joined on loan from Chelsea this week. Kei Kamara (knee) and Jason Steele (ankle) remain unavailable because of injury.

Referee: Mick Russell (St Albans)
Odds: Blackpool 19-10, Draw 12-5, Middlesbrough 8-5
It's a fact: Blackpool have the worst disciplinary record in English football, with nine red cards (three of them in one game) and 42 yellow. In addition, manager Paul Ince was banned for five games after a confrontation with a fourth official.

Comment by SCOTT WILSON: With the wheels coming off at Bloomfield Road, Boro could hardly have wished for a better time to visit the seaside. Expect the Teessiders' excellent recent league run to continue.

Prediction: 1-3

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