Askey proud to defy odds
MACCLESFIELD Town manager John Askey insists his side have defied the odds by finishing the National League season in ninth place.
The Silkmen had their final league game on Saturday as they were held to 0-0 draw at home to Sutton United.
Askey initially hoped to stage a play-off push, but the team finished 14 points adrift of the top five in the end.
The team do have an FA Trophy final to con- tend with though, as they take on York City at Wembley Stadium later this month.
With that in mind, Askey is proud of what his team have achieved, and thinks they have performed well considering some of the issues they have faced throughout the campaign.
“I’m very pleased. We started the season with the lowest budget and have finished ninth in the table and are in in a cup final,” he said. “We have also had a great FA Cup run. We don’t owe any money – we’ve wiped off all the debts from the football club.
“It’s been a terrific season considering we have also had one striker for the majority of the season with Chris Holroyd.
“To think where we started at the beginning of the season, we were always up against it. You always want more, so I’m still disappointed that we haven’t got into the playoffs, but I know the reasons why that is and what we had to contend with, so finishing ninth is really good.”
Askey felt it was games at the Moss Rose that cost his side, along with a couple of refereeing decisions that ultimately proved crucial in the long run.
“Away from home we have shown good character but I don’t know why our home form after Christmas has been the problem,” he said.
“We had games where it could have gone either way and games where one or two decisions were ridiculous.
“I’m not making excuses but if those decisions had gone the other way then you never know what may happen. There was one at Barrow where the referee gave a penalty, and then various other games, but it just wasn’t meant to be.”
Macclesfield’s attention now turns to the FA Trophy final against York, who were relegated from the National League on the final day of the season.
Askey believes the problems York have faced this year helps to prove just how well Macclesfield have done.
“If York win it won’t mean a great deal to them having gone down, and a club like them going down shows our achievement,” he said.
“They have spent heavily and have still gone down, so for us to finish ninth shows people who are in doubt just what we do here.”
Macc played out most of the season with just one striker – Chris Holroyd