Middleton pleased with the second half display

ASHINGTON CFC manager Gary Middleton was pleased with his side’s second half showing as they extended their unbeaten record to seven matches after wrapping up a 2-0 win over Billingham Synthonia on Saturday.

Middleton said: “I thought it was a really good three points over the 90 minutes and a win we had to work extremely hard for.

“I was disappointed with the performance in the first 45 minutes and we spoke at length about it at half-time that we were not doing enough collectively when we didn’t have the ball.

“For that Billingham worked the ball around well without threatening too much – but I wasn’t happy.”

However the boss was more pleased after the interval.

“We spoke about a few things at half-time and I thought the lads reacted to that,” he said.

“I made a couple of substitutions for heavy legs early on and I thought it was a well deserved victory.

“Overall, I was very happy ... it was a pleasing performance.”

The boss heaped praise on recent acquisition Jamie Clarke who came off the bench to score both goals on Saturday.

He added: “I don’t think you can fault Jamie since he has come to the club – his attitude is first class.

“Yes, he’s 37-years-old, but he knows where the goal is.”

Clarke scored with his first touch after coming on after the Colliers had been awarded a spot kick.

“I was about to bring him on in any case the next time the ball went out or play was stopped and it just so happened that we got a penalty – and that was it,” said Middleton.

“I had no hesitation that he took it; he had no hesitation either and you’ve got to take your hat off to the lad.

“For the second goal it was fantastic from a striker’s point of view.

“He knows where the goal is and he’s been in the right place to finish it off.”