Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Rover and out as Agony Goes on for Marwood

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Rover and out as Agony Goes on for Marwood

Article excerpt

Byline: Jeff Bowron

HAVING rekindled their playoff ambitions with victory at Altrincham on Tuesday, Gateshead face two six-pointers in the space of four days.

Second-placed Forest Green Rovers head for Tyneside on Saturday with a trip to fourth-top Braintree Town to follow next week.

Four points from two important games would be a good return for the Heed, who need to keep picking up points to stay in contention.

Gateshead are one of seven sides competing for the last two play-off places, with Forest Green a poignant fixture for two players in particular.

Goalkeeper Sam Russell made over 150 appearances for the wellbacked west country outfit before he joined Gateshead in the summer.

The Teessider kept a clean sheet on his return to the New Lawn in September when a Jimmy Phillips goal gave the Heed a 1-0 win.

While Russell will attempt to repeat the feat at the weekend another ex-Forest Green man will cut a frustrated figure in the stands.

James Marwood returned to Tyneside from Rovers in the summer after playing half a season in the Cotswolds, determined to get his career back on track.

Marwood had been Gateshead's leading scorer with 15 goals in a 2013-14 campaign that ended in Wembley heartache in the Conference play-off final.

Previously a winger like his father Brian who played for the likes of Arsenal and Hull City, his impressive performances came mainly through the middle.

The Newcastle United academy product's form earned him an England C call-up and a move to Scottish top-flight club St Mirren.

Last season was also to prove a frustrating one for Marwood, now 25, as he was limited to 15 games for the Saints without finding the net.

A mid-season move to Forest Green brought only four starts in his 16 outings, a solitary goal at Alfreton his lot for Ady Pennock's side.

It was hoped a move back to Gateshead would rekindle former glories, but a double injury setback has wrecked the St Albans-born player's season.

A freak broken wrist sustained in a pre-season friendly at Harrogate Town while in the defensive wall at a free-kick saw him miss the start of the season. …

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