Mathers on the mark yet again for AFC
AFC Macclesfield played their final group game of the J A Walton Challenge Cup last Saturday when they came up against a strong Egerton team.
Macclesfield started brightly and their first chance at goal came to top scorer Greg Mathers who let fly from an acute angle, only to be denied by a great save from the Egerton keeper.
Egerton found their feet and forced the Macclesfield keeper into action with an effort that saw Dom Chell tip the ball over the bar.
Just before half time, Jack Banister danced his way past two Egerton players and had his sights on goal, but before he could get his shot away, an Egerton midfielder tackled high and made no attempt to get the ball.
With Banister receiving treatment, the referee brandished a straight red card to the Egerton player.
With Egerton pinned back, Macclesfield started to dominate and on the stroke of half-time Harry Wheetman closed down the Egerton centre back. With no other option, the Egerton man played the ball back to the keeper; Mathers anticipated the decision and superbly made it 1-0 and moved his personal tally to 39 for the season.
With Macclesfield continuing to press, a huge decision from the referee changed the pattern of the game. Macclesfield’s defender Pat Walker was shown a straight red. There was no doubt that Walker won the ball but the referee deemed there to be excessive force and pulled the red card from the back pocket.
Defending a lead and now down to 10, manager Ed Haslam shuffled the pack.
Macclesfield sat back and invited pressure but the defence could not be beaten and Macclesfield ran the clock out to grab the win.
This result leaves AFC Macclesfield in the qualification places but await other results to determine qualification to the knockout stages.
Next game: AFC Macclesfield V Linotype CHN in the Stockport & D F A Senior Cup Semi Final at the Stockport Sports Village, kick off 3pm. All supporters welcome - free admission.
●● Greg Mathers