Farsley Celtic started life in the National League North with a superb 3-1 victory against Darlington yesterday.
Tyler Walton, Nathan Cartman and Jimmy Spencer all scored in a stunning first half for the Celt Army, while Adam Campbell’s second-half strike proved just a consolation for the Quakers.
After a strong start from the visitors it was Farsley who broke the deadlock, Louis Laing’s poor clearance falling to Tyler Walton 25-yards out, and the debutant unleashed a stunning strike that flew into the top corner.
Just minutes later Farsley doubled their lead, Jack Higgins played a ball over the top to Will Hayhurst who squared for Nathan Cartman to tap home against his former club.
After 35 minutes Adam Lakeland’s side were in dreamland, as Darlington made the fatal mistake of leaving Spencer unmarked in the box. The Quakers failed to deal with Isaac Baldwin’s long throw, and Spencer slotted home unchallenged at the back post.
However, Alun Armstrong’s side came out fighting after the interval, and after a couple of half chances Campbell managed to pull a goal back, curling a sumptuous strike into the top corner from outside the box.
That was as good as it got the for the visitors, as Farsley held on to take an excellent three points to start the season.
A delighted Adam Lakeland said after the game: “In the first-half I thought the lads applied the game plan to perfection.
“We knew they’d have more possession throughout the game, and there were certainly, in that second half, long spells where we didn’t have the ball, but I thought our organisation and discipline was really good.”
Next up for Lakeland’s men is a trip to York City tomorrow night. The Minstermen were 3-1 winners against Altrincham on Saturday.
Guiseley also began the new campaign in impressive style with a 3-0 home victory over King’s Lynn Town.
Two Jamie Spencer strikes and a goal from Aaron Martin proved the difference for the Lions who had too much firepower for their newly-promoted opponents.
The hosts nearly made the perfect start, when a ball over the top beat the away side’s defence and Kaine Felix was one-on-one with the keeper but his effort drifted wide.
The opener arrived with just under 20 minutes gone, Reiss McNally crossed and Martin scored with a well-placed header into the top right-hand corner.
The home side would double their advantage with the first opportunity of the second half, a powerful run by McNally saw him pass to Spencer who placed a curling effort into the net from the edge of the area.
Spencer was full of confidence and he soon got his second goal – beating three defenders before running through to score. King’s Lynn almost gained a consolation goal but Adam Marriott couldn’t get his close-range effort past Scott Garner who made a superb block.
“It’s an excellent start,” said Guiseley joint manager Russ O’Neill. “I think we have beaten a really good team, we stood strong and looked a threat going forward.
“We’ve had a good pre-season but we had to do it on the pitch when it really matters and we have done that, so I’m delighted.”
The Lions travel to Bradford Park Avenue tomorrow night for their first derby of the new season. Park Avenue suffered a setback yesterday losing 5-0 at Curzon Ashton in Garry Thompson’s first match in charge.