Coxhoe Athletic v Sunderland West End

2.30pm  21 October 2017

Wearside League
Coxhoe Athletic 1 Sunderland West End 8 (att 50)

Coxhoe may have been on the wrong end of a thrashing at the hands of Sunderland West End, but a visit to their Beechfield Park home epitomised why I enjoy visiting non-League football grounds so much.

It's a lovely venue, with only the lack of floodlights preventing it staging football at a higher level. The pitch, which looks well cared for, is surrounded by a collection of small stands and bits of cover, as well as one or two benches.

There's a decent snack bar for pre-match and half time refreshments, and the club and its friendly officials seem to get a good level of support from locals.

It's a ground I've wanted to visit for a while, and I was pleased when the Coxhoe Athletic name was restored to the Wearside League after a brief period when, to keep football going in Coxhoe, they took the identity of Spennymoor's reserve side.

They're still a young team though, and after taking an early lead thanks to a penalty they were comprehensively outclassed by a impressive Sunderland West End side. The visitors were soon level, and had a 4-1 advantage by half time.

Goal number five was in the opening minute of the second period, after which West End went half-an-hour without scoring, but as the hosts tired in the closing minutes three more goals were added to the tally.

An off-day for Coxhoe, but at least they've got a team of their own again, and I thoroughly enjoyed my visit despite the lopsided scoreline.

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