by Jeff King
It's Monkwearmouth Charity Cup Semi-Final Day on Saturday as United take on the tough challenge of Gateshead Leam Rangers.
Back in August, the 14th to be precise, Leam Rangers arrived at The Riverside for a Wearside League game. They left after a tight encounter with all three points after taking a 1 - 0 win.
Since then both Leam Rangers and United have had excellent seasons in the Wearside League and various Cup competitions. Leam Rangers are currently 3rd in the League, six points behind United but with three games in hand.
They are also in two other semi-finals with a date against Darlington Town in the Durham Trophy coming up and then a semi-final opponent in the Alan Hood Trophy to be confirmed.
Their league record is excellent. They've only lost three times in seventeen games and have thirteen wins. Whilst goals scored is one of the lowest, 46, in the top half of the table they have only conceded 16 goals in the league.
Star performers are striker Aidan Rutledge who has fifteen notched so far this campaign as well as five Man of the Match awards. Goalkeeper Jordan Bolton meanwhile leads the Wearside League's Golden Gloves table with only 14 conceded in 14 games.
One player missing from Saturday's game for Leam Rangers through suspension will be Rob Houghton who actually struck winner in the league game back in August.
United's line-up will be very interesting as there have been several changes in their make-up since that game and there could be as many as seven changes from the team that took the field back in August.
It all points to a blockbuster of a game that should be quite a spectacle to see. Kick-off at The Riverside on Saturday will be at 14:00pm and a big crowd is expected.