COLIN Stromsoy will be in charge of Newton Aycliffe for the first time as manager when they go to West Auckland for their local derby on Saturday.

Stromsoy has plenty of Northern League experience having been a part of the Team Northumbria set up until they withdrew from the league at a moment’s notice during the summer. He also coached the University team in the National College League.

Aycliffe chairman Alan Oliver said; “Colin came to watch us last Saturday against Dunston, and then asked to have a chat. He was very impressive and has got some very good ideas.”

Stromsoy, who has UFEA A coaching qualifications, said; "I'm delighted to be joining Newton Aycliffe who are a progressive club with a great vision for the future.”

Keeper James Winter will have a fitness test ahead of Saturday’s game, but defender Josh Rodgers and striker Vinny Gash are both suspended, and striker Ben Wood and midfielder Shaun Hudson are both injured.

West Auckland, who are eighth, are missing Adam Mitchell because of suspension, while Anthony Bell, Dan Parker and Nathan Fisher are all injured, and Steven Snaith suspended while Arran Wearmouth is ill.

In the race for the title, Bishop Auckland are away to Seaham Red Star.

Bishops are in second place on goal difference above Consett, and a point behind leaders Dunston UTS.

Manager Ian Chandler said; “It’s getting more and more interesting as each game passes, but from our point of view Seaham is another must-win game. Seaham have signed some good players of late so it’s another tricky game. Slightly unknown opposition is a worry.”

Chandler expects to be at full strength with defender Darren Richardson returning after suspension. Bishops have only lost twice away from home in the league this season.

Bishops will be hoping that Shildon can do them a favour at Dunston UTS. Shildon had a great 6-1 home win over Consett in the Durham Challenge Cup in midweek to give them their seventh win in their last eight matches.

Manager Danny Moore, who has now been in charge at Dean Street for two years, will be choosing from a full squad, and said; “We’re just looking to finish as high up as possible in the league.”

Of the other first division games, Consett need to win at Ryhope CW.

In the second division, Chester-le-Street continue their pursuit of a top two place at home to West Allotment.

They have lost striker Joe Hailes to Seaham Red Star, but otherwise manager Colin Wake expects to choose from a full squad.

“We are expecting another tough afternoon against an Allotment side which has come into form,” he said. “They have some excellent players who are starting to gel.”

Willington, who are in seventh place need to win at Billingham Synthonia to keep their hopes of finishing in the top three alive. Bradley Burns return after suspension for them.

Second bottom Brandon play Crook in a local derby, and they include two new signings, Bradley Chisholm and James Connor in their squad, while Craig Hindmarch will have a fitness test. Jordan Lee and Kieran Alderson are both out because of injury.

Crook, who are in 13th place, are missing Jim Wilson and Nathan Stephenson, while Callum Johnston and Ellis Husband both return. Phil Caley will also have a fitness test.

Manager Jamie Tunstall said; “I’m expecting a very tough game against a Brandon side whose results haven’t matched their performances. No-one will be underestimating them and we’ll have to be at our best to beat them. They gave us a tough game in the reverse fixture.”

Bottom club Durham City are at home to Birtley, desperately needing a win to reduce the seven-point gap on second bottom Brandon.

Manager Billy Harper said; “We are hopeful for a few of the injured players to be available. We are looking to add more to the positive performance from last week against Chester-le-Street and get some much-needed points on the board.”

In the other games, second placed Thornaby are at Bedlington, and Redcar Athletic are at home to Jarrow.

The draw for the semi finals of the Durham Challenge Cup is: Hartlepool United v Shildon, Gateshead or Dunston UTS v South Shields.