Sunderland based Seaham Red Star came to town on Saturday as both clubs looked to take one step closer to Wembley in the FA Vase.

The game started of brightly for the Collieries who had the first substantial effort of the game, Winger Mark Truffas drilled his corner into the Seaham area for defender Mark Ayres to head just over the bar under little pressure from the Seaham defence. After this effort the Colls controlled the game, holding possession well against a well drilled Seaham side.

On 26 minutes however, Seaham began to get into the game a little more. Atherton goalkeeper Danny Taberner saved really well from a Liam McBryde shot after he made an advancing run into the Collieries area following David Palmer’s pin point long ball forward.

Two minutes after that Seaham effort Red Star found themselves in front. Seaham’s Sonny Andrews scored from the penalty spot, which was tucked well into the bottom left hand corner, despite the best efforts of Taberner.

Everybody inside Alder House knew that the game was going to be that of a close one and for the remainder of the half, that is exactly what it was with neither team winning the midfield battle.

Half Time – Atherton Collieries 0-1 Seaham Red Star

Five minutes after the restart, Atherton found themselves with a corner. Mark Battersby won the ball in the Seaham half of the pitch, having twisted his way deeper into the Seaham half, Battersby threaded the ball through to Truffas who was located inside of the Seaham box, Truffas curled the ball towards the Seaham goal to force the corner. Form the resulting corner, defender Gaz Carson was denied by a superb save from Seahem stopper Shaun Newbrook.

Three minutes later, 54 minutes in, Truffas had another fine chance to draw the two teams level. Truffas, in the top right hand quadrant of the box received the ball and cut it onto his other foot. Unfortunately, Tuffas couldn’t get enough behind the ball and curled it straight into Newbrook’s palms.

It was Newbrook who was hugely influential in Seaham’s second goal of the game. Newbrook’s free kick was launched forward for the midfield to head the ball deeper into the Collieries’ half; David Palmer ran onto the loose ball and duly dispatched after he had beaten the Colls’ defence and ran into the box.

However, the spirit of Atherton was shown four minutes later. Not wanting to give the game to Seaham the Colls worked hard and pulled a goal back. A Colls long ball was collected easily after substitute Jordan Cover evaded the Seaham back line; Cover went on to roll the ball past the keeper at a tight angle. Simple but effective.

Following the goal, the game spiced up a bit as Atherton found themselves back in the game. A minute after Cover’s goal, the forward nearly scored again. Following a Colls forward move, Cover pinged the ball right at the top right hand corner, it was destined for the back of the goal but was denied by a superb save from Newbrook who was quite clearly have a fine game.

With just five minutes of the game left the Collieries had one last chance to draw level. Substitute Matt Boland volleyed wide after Cover chested the ball down to him.

Full Time – Atherton Collieries 1-2 Seaham Red Star

Both teams gave 100 percent throughout the game in what was the most competitive game of football seen at Alder House so far this season. Seaham were a solid and well organised side and we wish them look in the next round and for the rest of the season. As always, your support on Saturday was excellent and was appreciated by everyone at the football club. The Collieries go again on Wednesday when they make the journey to Flixton to play Northwich Flixton Villa back in the NWCFL.

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