LEAGUE leaders Ponteland United Reserves lost ground at the top of the Northern Alliance Development Division.

They suffered a 4-2 reverse at home to Swalwell, who moved up to seventh place after taking all three points at Druids Park on Saturday.

Sean Mcdonald and Steven Knox registered for the Black and Whites, but it was a day which simply didn’t go their way.

Manager Kennie Malia said Ponteland got off to a disappointing start in the game, from which they were unable to recover.

“The poor start gave us a mountain to climb,” he said. “But well done to Swalwell.

“We have to put this behind us and move on to the next game.”

It’s an interesting stage of the season for United’s Reserves. Despite Saturday’s defeat, they still hold a significant 10-point lead at the top of the league table.

Impressively, they have won 13 of their 18 games played so far, drawing twice and losing just three times. Ponteland are also the division’s highest goalscorers, with in-form striker Lutfur Karim contributing to their impressive haul of 58 goals.

But second placed West Jesmond and third placed Morpeth both have five games in hand, while North Sunderland, in fourth place, have six games in hand.

Ponteland’s next three league fixtures are all away from home. However, they are against bottom half sides, and Malia’s men will be aiming to take maximum points.

Next up for Ponteland is a trip to 12th placed Wideopen A on Saturday, followed by a visit to basement club Red House Farm a week later.