Dan shows he’s the man that can

Macclesfield Express - - MOTORS -

DANNY Whi­taker ad­mits he’s not quite sure why he was on hand to score Mac­cles­field’s win­ner at Grimsby, but he’s glad he could earn his side a much-needed win.

The Wilm­slow mid­fielder struck late in the day at Blun­dell Park to get 2015 go­ing on a high and end what had been a fruit­less Christ­mas run, squeez­ing in an 85thminute win­ner after Adri­ano Moke’s ball from the right had been hand­ily par­ried into his path.

And after his late charge re­sulted in that vi­tal goal, the veteran couldn’t say why he’d aban­doned the no­tion of shoring up the mid­dle and see­ing out a cred­itable draw.

“I don’t know why I was up there for the goal, I’d just left my man and the rest is his­tory re­ally,” said the 34-year-old after the 2-1 win. “It was a good cross from Mokes and I made my run, he’s not stayed with me and I got it, that was it re­ally.

“It’s a good start to the year, def­i­nitely – we needed a re­sult at the end of the day, after the last two re­sults we’ve had and we’ve gone and done that to­day.

“We knew we had to work hard and we knew we could more than match them and we’ve proved that.”

And his man­ager John Askey says that, while he’d have been happy to bring home a point, he knew there was a great chance of all three once that loose ball fell to Whi­taker.

“Danny is a re­ally good finisher, not only did he get the win­ning goal, he was ter­rific through­out,” said Askey of the lo­cal lad, who re­turned to his home­town team in the sum­mer of 2013.

“He is a re­ally good player and he’s one that we’re lucky to have – if he wasn’t liv­ing in Mac­cles­field we prob­a­bly wouldn’t have him, I think we’re very for­tu­nate.”

Although the Silk­men had fallen to a 4-0 de­feat at Bris­tol Rovers in 2014’s fi­nal fix­ture they were per­haps more frus­trated by their Box­ing Day loss at home to Grimsby.

Then, for­mer winger Jack Mack­reth struck with what was just about the Mariners’ only chance of the game to end Macc’s in­vin­ci­bil­ity at the Moss Rose.

And while the three points on the east coast pro­vided sweet re­venge for that loss, Whi­taker feels it could have been four – or even six – points from the home and away clashes with their fel­low play-off con­tenders.

“We de­served some­thing in the first game,” he added.

“It was one of those games where there was noth­ing in it and if it was 0-0 every­body would have been happy with that but un­for­tu­nately it wasn’t.

“And there was noth­ing in the first half against Bris­tol un­til just be­fore half-time and once they got that first goal it was al­ways go­ing to be a hard game to get back into.

“Un­for­tu­nately it proved to be that way, but we’ve come here and put a great shift in against Grimsby.

“The tim­ing of the first goal at Bris­tol killed that game, we more than matched them, it was a set-piece that cost us and from then on it was al­ways go­ing to be tough.”

Many may have feared a point-free fes­tive sea­son when the fix­tures had landed the two games against Grimsby – in fourth spot – sandwiching that un­en­vi­able trek down to sec­ond-placed Rovers.

And now that Macc have come through that three-game pe­riod rel­a­tively un­scathed Whi­taker re­mains con­fi­dent that the 2014/15 sea­son can still end in pro­mo­tion glory that few, if any, could have fore­seen be­fore the cam­paign got un­der way.

“Christ­mas has been up and down, we knew it was go­ing to be tough and ob­vi­ously those two re­sults weren’t great but we just got on with it and got the three points in that third game,” said Whi­taker, who moved to Port Vale in 2006 but de­lighted the club’s sup­port­ers when he made his un­ex­pected prodi­gal re­turn ahead of last sea­son.

Not quite as sprightly as the man that left the Moss Rose for the Valiants Whi­taker was rel­ish­ing the prospect of some rest and re­cu­per­a­tion be­fore their bid for a Foot­ball League re­turn restarts on Jan­uary 17 at Kid­der­min­ster Har­ri­ers.

“We’ve started the new year with three points and hope­fully we can kick on, the play-offs are a pos­si­bil­ity, def­i­nitely,” he said.

“There’s no team in this league that’s miles bet­ter than us, I’d prob­a­bly say Bar­net are a lit­tle bit stronger but apart from them all the teams can beat each other.

“I’m def­i­nitely look­ing for­ward to a break now, it couldn’t have come at a bet­ter time.

“We can get a few lads back who’ve been in­jured and the gaffer can maybe bring one or two in to boost us and then we can rest and go again.

“We’ve got Paul Lewis com­ing back and Will Hain­ing has come on for a few min­utes, he’ll be back in con­tention and it makes us a stronger squad all round.”

We needed that re­sult at the end of the day

THE lat­est £100 win­ners of the Su­per Silk Lotto over the Christ­mas pe­riod have been an­nounced.

The De­cem­ber 26

Peter Hil­ton Pho­tog­ra­phy

●● Danny Whi­taker wheels away after scor­ing the win­ner at Blun­dell Park

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.