With the Northern League Division One about to reach its climax, one set of fans were in jubilation while two others were left in despair.
Saturday’s fixtures saw newly promoted South Shields travel to North Shields in the local derby, where North Shields knew that if they lost, their title hopes would effectively be over.
North Shields showed the resistance which has made them a force in the division this year and it eventually took a phenomenal strike from David Foley in the 23rd minute to secure the victory and push the Mariners to their 31st consecutive win.
South Shields were in for a difficult second half as the Robins began to press for an equaliser and it was eventually made harder after Julio Arca received his second yellow card early in the half.
The pressure wasn’t enough though and South Shields held on to claim promotion. And a 4-0 win over Marske United on Tuesday saw them move three points above their rivals with a game in hand.
Meanwhile, at the other end of the table, West Allotment Celtic hosted Guisborough Town and Chester-le-Street Town travelled to Penrith knowing that if either of them lost they’d be relegated.
Unfortunately for the two teams that was exactly what happened – Celtic lost 1-0 to their relegation rivals in a tight battle which was decided by a moment of brilliance by Guisborough winger Steve Roberts.
Meanwhile, the Cestrians failed to recover from an early Penrith goal as the Cumbrians took all three points in a 3-1 victory after goals from Andy Murray-Jones and Martyn Coleman (2) condemned Chester-le-Street to relegation.
Celtic and the Cestrians will be replaced by Stockton Town and Team Northumbria who were both promoted after Billingham Synthonia’s 2-0 loss to Whickham.