Harmison looking for games to ‘lift atmosphere’

Ashington manager Steve Harmison in the dugout Picture by Ian Appleby - www.ianapplebyimages.com
Ashington manager Steve Harmison in the dugout Picture by Ian Appleby - www.ianapplebyimages.com

Ashington FC manager Steve Harmison is desperately hoping that his side’s match against North & Stockton Ancients on Saturday will beat the elements.

The Colliers have now had three postponements inside the past ten days.

And the boss admitted that apart from a hangover still circling around the club, the atmosphere is in need of a lift.

After the cancellation of their Techflow Northumberland Senior Cup tie at North Shields followed by match off decisions at Penrith and at home to Shildon, Harmison is eager for his side to return to action.

Cramlington-based official Kirk Freeth was the latest official to give the thumbs down at the weekend after incessant and heavy rain turned the pitch at Woodhorn Lane into an unplayable quagmire, which shunted the rematch against the Railwaymen of Shildon firmly into the sidings.

“From where we have come following the defeats at North Shields and against Seaham, there is still a hangover at the club,” said Harmison.

“The atmosphere is not what it should be, which is understandable, but the players have trained well.

“We had a run of nine matches unbeaten, which was very good, but the last two performances have not been great.

“Unfortunately you are only as good as your last game and we need a return to competitive action.

“We have taken the lads away from the Woodhorn Lane surroundings to the fitness rooms at Longbenton.

“From a team environment point of view it has been excellent, with good sessions, and we may repeat the exercise this week as we prepare for the trip to Norton & Stockton on Saturday.”

Meanwhile Jonathyn Quinn and Lewis Robson have both made the switch to Alnwick Town.

“Jonathyn is a talented footballer who came to us from the professional game at Newcastle and it’s no good him sitting on the bench,” said Harmison.

“First and foremost, it’s not fair on him because he needs to be playing first team football, but he lives at Alnwick and doesn’t drive.

“He has been great and it will do him the world of good to get back to playing football, doing well and scoring goals.

“Lewis is a youngster who is at Gateshead College and who trains every day.

“It will do his education the world of good playing every week at a club who can give him first team football and playing against men.”

Harmison also revealed he is monitoring the progress of injured trio Scott Blandford, James Taylor and Dylan Williamson ahead of Saturday’s trip to Teesside.