AFC prove they’re up to the test

Macclesfield Express - - SPORT -


AFC Mac­cles­field passed their tough­est league test of the sea­son so-far against Mersey Val­ley FC on Satur­day.

Mersey Val­ley al­most opened the scor­ing on 20 min­utes when a quick counter at­tack and left Mac­cles­field in trou­ble. A lack of com­mu­ni­ca­tion re­sulted in goal­keeper Jor­dan Hitchin hav­ing to come off his line and make a last-ditch tackle.

Hitchin seem­ingly won the ball but the ref­eree didn’t agree and pointed to the spot. Mersey Val­ley con­verted the penalty.

Within five min­utes, Mac­cles­field were on level terms. A 30-yard strike from Sam Wil­liamson re­sulted in a great save from the Mersey Val­ley keeper, but like ev­ery good striker, Mac­cles­field’s cap­tain Greg Mathers was on hand to fol­low up the re­bound.

Mac­cles­field con­tin­ued to cre­ate chances with Mathers be­ing de­nied a rare headed goal by a su­perb save.

Man­ager Ed Haslam was forced into a change at half-time when ever present Chris Allen was taken off with an an­kle in­jury, Adam Ledgar his re­place­ment.

Two min­utes into the sec­ond half and dis­as­ter struck for Macc when sub­sti­tute Ledgar went into a 50/50 tackle and came out clutch­ing his shoul­der. Ledgar was later taken to hos­pi­tal to dis­cover he had bro­ken his col­lar bone.

That meant Mac­cles­field were forced into another change and a change in for­ma­tion with Jonny Ca­vanagh com­ing into the fray.

Af­ter that dis­rup­tive start to the sec­ond half, Mathers got the ball on the left, touched it past Mersey Val­ley’s right-back and thumped the ball with his weaker right foot into the top cor­ner to make it 2-1 to Mac­cles­field.

With 20 min­utes left Mersey Val­ley came on the at­tack again.

Right-back Chris Me­gar­rell was forced to make a tackle in­side the box, but un­like the first penalty award, there could be no de­bate. Mersey Val­ley con­verted the penalty and made it 2-2.

The home side started to put pres­sure on Mac­cles­field’s back four.

A cross came in from the left and was fly­ing over Mersey Val­ley’s cen­tre-for­ward but in­stead of let­ting the ball go out, he tried to bring it down with his hand.

He had been cau­tioned ear­lier in the game and the ref­eree had no choice to but to show a red card.

With the ex­tra man, Mac­cles­field be­gan to dom­i­nate once again, and with 12 min­utes to go the win­ner came.

A stun­ning pass­ing move re­sulted in Jack Banis­ter find­ing Jonny Ca­vanagh in the box to slot the ball home.

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