Gateshead 1-1 Darlington

26/12/2011, by Jeff Bowron

Martin BrittainGateshead made it three draws out of three against Darlington at the International Stadium after a disappointing derby at a blustery International Stadium.

The Tynesiders unimpressive home form continued when former Carlisle United midfielder Marc Bridge-Wilkinson levelled from the penalty spot eight minutes from time.

Gateshead's home results are becoming their Achilles heel and it is three months since a Conference win was recorded on Tyneside.

Martin Brittain's excellent 53rd minute free kick was never built on and Chris Carruthers was sent off in his first start since he was red carded against Tamworth in the FA Cup earlier in the month.

The concession of a late goal proved costly - the 5th time in the last seven home games that a goal has been conceded in the last 15 minutes.

The Heed had opened brightly with Kris Gate getting forward to good effect to support Jon Shaw and Brittain and former Quaker Chris Moore providing the width.

An early Gate header was deflected over the bar and then Brittain's curling free kick was turned away by Sam Russell.

Graeme Lee put a header just wide at the other end and then Liam Hatch cut inside to shoot past the angle.

Gate got in front of Russell to head over from another Brittain cross and then volleyed over as The Heed continued to press.

Phil Turnbull was wide of the near post from 18 yards but Darlington twice went close inside 40 seconds on the half hour.

Teenager Dale Hopson intercepted James Curtis' wayward pass to chip Tim Deasy from distance, the keeper just getting back to claw the ball away one-handed.

Liam Hatch then played in Jamie Chandler who looked a certain scorer until Deasy spread himself to make a crucial block.

Former Gateshead loanee Adam Rundle got the better of Craig Baxter to fire into the side netting as the Quakers ended the half strongly.

It was Gateshead, however, who made the breakthrough eight minutes into the second half after Lee had gone through Jon Shaw just outside the box.

Brittain brilliantly curled the ball into the far corner and then Gate blazed over from Shaw's lay-off as all looked fine on the home front.

Bridge-Wilkinson, however, almost got on the end of a Rundle cross while Russell palmed clear a Moore cross before Gate could pounce.

Gateshead had lost their way and they were made to pay as the clock ticked down.

John McReady was allowed to run across the face of the box and when his short ball found Bridge-Wilkinson the schemer was bundled over by Carruthers.

Cure another red card for the experienced full back and the equaliser as Bridge-Wilkinson sent Deasy the wrong way from the spot.

Neither side could find a winner as a scrappy derby ended all square, Darlington much the happier of the two sides.


Gateshead: Deasy, Baxter, Carruthers, Gate, Curtis, Clark, Brittain (Rents 83), Turnbull, Shaw, Moore (Marwood 73), Cummins (Fisher 46)
Subs (not used): Alnwick (gk), Gillies

Goal: Brittain (53)

Booked: Gate (61), Marwood (90)

Sent Off: Carruthers (82)


Darlington: Russell, Arnison, Brown, Chandler, Hatch (Harrison 79 6), Taylor, McReady (P.Gray 82), Lee, Rundle, Hopson, Bridge-Wilkinson
Subs (not used): Nixon (gk), J.Gray

Goal: Bridge-Wilkinson (pen-82)


Ref: Richard West (Hull)

Attendance: 1,522


Chris Moore

Chris Moore


James Marwood

James Marwood


Kris Gate

Kris Gate


Micky Cummins

Micky Cummins


Phil Turnbull

Phil Turnbull. Photos by Martin Avery.