Home » Dunston Midfielder Fixes The Floodlights In His Side’s FA Trophy Clash Against Marine

Dunston Midfielder Fixes The Floodlights In His Side’s FA Trophy Clash Against Marine

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He’s a bright spark in midfield! Non-league player goes from footballer to electrician to try and fix the failed floodlights after his Dunston side’s FA Trophy clash against Marine was halted by faulty fuse box

  • The floodlights cut-out during Marine’s FA Trophy clash against Dunston
  • Saturday’s game was suspended just after half-time as the problem was solved
  • Dunston midfielder Phil Turnbull attempted to solve the issue at the fuse box
  • The 34-year-old ultimately couldn’t fix the problem without his tools on hand
  • The game was eventually restarted after a 50-minute delay in the second-half

By Craig Hope for the Daily Mail and Isabel Baldwin For Mailonline

Published: | Updated:

When the lights went out during Marine’s FA Trophy tie with Dunston UTS on Saturday, visiting midfielder Phil Turnbull had one thought: ‘We can’t come all the way back here on Tuesday’.

So as the teams left the pitch with the game seemingly set to be abandoned, electrician Turnbull hatched a plan. ‘I saw one of Marine’s officials and asked where the electrical cut-out was,’ the 34-year-old tells Sportsmail.

‘I explained I did this sort of thing for a living. The club’s electrician had Covid so we got him on the phone. I was playing around with the circuit-breaker in the cupboard, telling him what was live and what wasn’t.

Phil Turnbull (pictured) took the action to the sidelines as he attempted to fix the floodlights

Marine found an electrician in the Dunston midfielder who looked at the clubhouse fuse box

‘We eventually got one of the floodlights back on and another sparky showed up and helped get the others working. Our lads were buzzing — we didn’t want another six-hour round trip!’

Unbeknown to Turnbull, his off-the-field efforts had gone viral on social media. When he returned to the dressing room after a shootout defeat — in which he scored — he checked his phone.

‘There were 300 messages on WhatsApp! I’m thinking, “Eh? What’s going on?” There was a clip on Soccer Saturday of the host saying, “Can he fix it? Yes he can!”

The floodlights at the Marine Travel Arena cut-out in the second half of the FA Trophy tie

‘When I played for Darlington they had a song about me and they’d adapted the words on Twitter… “Phil Turnbull, passes with precision, midfield magician, emergency electrician!” It was all a bit mental.’

Turnbull is also a former teacher, and he was certainly the brightest spark on Merseyside this weekend.

The game was called to a stop just after half-time when the floodlights at the Marine Travel Arena failed during the Merseyside outfit’s first-round tie.

Turnbull faced immense pressure after the referee announced that if the issue wasn’t sorted by 5pm, the game would have to be cancelled.

Ultimately, the 34-year-old was unable to solve the issue by himself as he didn’t have his tools with him but assistance arrived and play was able to resume after a 50-minute delay.

The game faced the risk of being suspended if the issue could not be fixed by the 5pm deadline

Marine’s Twitter account announced the return of play at 5.05pm after the issue was fixed

Marine – who famously hosted Tottenham Hotspur in the FA Cup third round in January – thanked Turnbull for his efforts, tweeting: ‘Thanks to @dunstonutsfc player Philip Turnbull for attempting to fix our floodlights.’

The match, which was watched by a crowd of 1,202, restarted in the 53rd minute with the score level at 0-0. It ultimately finished 2-2, with Marine going on to win 5-4 on penalties.

The electrics hero did attempt to save his side as he scored in the shoot-out, but Turnbull’s on-pitch heroics proved to be a losing cause.

Marine weren’t the only non-league side with technical issues at the weekend. The floodlights also cut-out during Hampton and Richmond FC’s National League South game against Braintree Town on Saturday.

The Merseyside club were keen to thank the midfielder for his efforts on social media

But Hampton and Richmond were not as fortunate as Marine to have Turnbull’s expertise on hand and the match was eventually suspended, with Braintree 1-0 up.

The club’s Twitter account posted: ‘A power cut at the ground has meant that the match between Braintree Town is officially abandoned.

‘We do apologise for this and for those with tickets for today’s game are advised to keep hold of them and further information on the re-arranged fixture will be out soon.’

And, Hampton and Richmond couldn’t resist having a joke with the Merseyside club over their shared misfortunes on Twitter.

Hampton and Richmond FC shared a joke with Marine over their shared floodlight problems

The club announced their National League South game against Braintree Town was suspended