Askey proud to defy odds

Macclesfield Express - - SPORT - SHELDAN KEAY

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.”

David Tol­l­i­day

Macc played out most of the sea­son with just one striker – Chris Hol­royd

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