Blues beaten by Celtic in play-off clash as Newcastle seal success

Newcastle United won the Whitby Town Challenge Cup. Picture by Brian Murfield.
Newcastle United won the Whitby Town Challenge Cup. Picture by Brian Murfield.

Whitby Town finished their Challenge Cup as the last-placed team, after falling 2-0 to a youthful Celtic side.

Goals either side of half-time from Broque Watson and Aidan Nesbitt ensured a third-place finish for the Bhoys.

A tight opening to the game saw both sides struggle to get a hold of the game and create anything of note, but eventually it was Celtic got the chance to open the scoring from 12 yards, 25 minutes in.

Broque Watson was felled inside the box, tumbling over Andrew May’s outstretched leg. Watson duly obliged from the spot, sending Shane Bland the wrong way, slotting into the bottom-right corner.

Whitby were undeterred, however, and searched for ways to get back into the match, creating a couple of good chances just ahead of the break.

Good play, started by May, saw Kieran Weledji volley just over from 12 yards, before the right-wing trialist fired just wide, first-time, from Snaith’s cross.

Celtic, though, came closest to doubling their lead. Ciaran Diver showed good skill, taking a touch from Watson’s pass, though his low, deflected effort could only graze the left-hand upright.

It can only be assumed that both managers asked for more of the same of their sides, and if so, they both got their wish. Neither side could find a way through, though Whitby arguably had the better of the half-chances, with the right-wing trialist providing

Celtic, too, had chances to double their lead through Aidan Nesbitt and Watson, but again, there was little of note, with defences winning out across the second period.

The visitors finally had a chance of note, with Ewan Henderson bearing down on goal, whilst Whitby waited for an offside flag, but he could only drive an effort through the legs of Bland and wide.

The lead was finally doubled to ensure third-place in the cup, with just a minute remaining.

Celtic attacked in numbers, with Henderson leaving Bland on the floor before chipping to the back post. The ball found Aidan Nesbitt, one of the shining lights of the tournament, who volleyed in from point-black range, despite the Blues' trialist's best efforts on the line.

Newcastle United then romped to the Whitby Town Challenge Cup title, with a 4-1 win over AZ Alkmaar.

Ivan Toney netted a hat-trick for the Magpies, with Mo Sangare wrapping up the win in the final minute. Abdelmalek El Hasnaoui replied for the Dutch visitors, though it was only to be a consolation.