CONSETT started their pre-season preparations a week later than intended (after the weather-enforced postponement of the previous weekend's game against Prudhoe Town) with a decent workout against Wearside League opponents. The starting XI contained four new signings - Calvin Smith from Spennymoor, Ian Davidson and Luke Olabode from Sunderland RCA and Steven Aiston from Whickham - along with two returning old boys, Andrew Cuthbertson and Mark Eccles.
It was Eccles who set up what should have been the opening goal on 15 minutes, latching on to a through ball and rounding the keeper before squaring for last season's top scorer Michael Mackay to pick up where he left off, but the linesmen said the pass had gone forward and ruled the 'goal' out for offside.
Mackay was not to be denied for long, however, and made it 1-0 on 30 minutes, picking his spot across the keeper from Cuthbertson's cross from the left. Six minutes before half-time it was 2-0, with Smith's pass leaving Eccles one-on-one to finish past the exposed keeper.
Consett made eight substitutions at half-time as manager Kenny Lindoe took the opportunity to look at some young players. But it was a familiar face, Mackay, who made it 3-0 on 57 minutes, finishing coolly after Smith's lobbed pass sent him clear.
More substitutions and chances followed: Lewis Teasdale could think himself unlucky not to get on the scoresheet after seeing a header and a shot well-saved by the keeper and another effort strike the foot of the post. Young Phillip McConnell was also unlucky not to notch, sliding in inches away from one chance and seeing a good shot rise just over the bar. With half a dozen established players unavailable for one reason or another, this was a useful start to the pre-season..