Heroes do honours

At the awards presentation are (left to right) Malcolm Macdonald, Ray Wrightson, Andy Bowman, Ron Tatum and Anthony Woodhouse.
At the awards presentation are (left to right) Malcolm Macdonald, Ray Wrightson, Andy Bowman, Ron Tatum and Anthony Woodhouse.

DANNY Patterson has been named the North Shields FC Player of the Year and second winner of the George Thompson Award.

Femi Akinbolu was the inaugural winner last year of the trophy inscribed in memory of one of the Robins Wembley heroes who sadly died in 2009.

The presentation evening had shades of 1969 written all over it, for making the awards were George ‘Bomber’ Thompson’s team-mates, skipper Ronnie Tatum and striker Ray Wrightson alongside club president Malcolm Macdonald.

It was a double success for Patterson for he also received the votes of his fellow players to be a worthy recipient of the Players’ Player trophy.

Patterson was part of a Shields defence that leaked a mere 36 league goals all season, the best record in the division, and is renowned for his surging runs upfield.

The ex-Queen of the South left back signed for the Robins at the start of the season from West Allotment Celtic and made 41 appearances, netting once in a 6-1 win at Hebburn.

Hot-shot Keith Douglas who notched 40 goals won the supporters’ votes and, in a poignant moment, received the Don Winskill Golden Boot award from the North Shields legend himself.

The prolific Winskill incredibly scored 59, 52 and 51 goals in three successive seasons for the Robins between 1964-67.

Douglas led the line superbly all campaign, his tally the highest of any player donning a Shields shirt since Brian Joicey and Tommy Orrick bagged 46 and 45 respectively in that historic treble season in 1968-69 under Frank Brennan.

In Northern League campaigns Douglas overtook Jim Pearson, who struck 34 times when Robins player-boss in 1983-84, England Amateur International George Brown 33 in 1973-74 and Ian Mutrie 33 in 1984-85.

Defender Martin Graham who made his North Shields debut in 2003 and was part of a side that lifted the Shipowners Cup and earned promotion back to the Northern League that season, was named Clubman of the Year.

Graham, still a valuable member of the squad rarely misses even a training session started a match ten times and came on as substitute a further ten times.

Long serving Andy Bowman, now player-coach, is still famed for that hat-trick against Newcastle United in 2002 and found the net on seven occasions this time round despite only starting one match was chosen by Anthony Woodhouse to receive the Manager’s Award.

Second and third in the Shields scoring stakes in 2010-11 were Andy Hay, last season’s Golden Boot winner, with 16 including a brilliant hat-trick at Darlington RA and James Luccock 15, including four in the home match with Darlington RA when he came off the bench.

Making most appearances were Mark Rasmussen and Jonathan Hall (both 45), Douglas 44, Patterson 41, Luccock 40, Akinbolu 38, Michael Robinson, Paul Watson and Robbie Livermore all 37.