Macc impress in
MACCLESFIELD Town’s first preseason friendly ended in a 2-0 defeat at the hands of our Championship opposition after a spirited display, that created an even contest at the Moss Rose.
Second half goals from Bradley Johnson and Mason Bennett broke the deadlock, but several Macclesfield players impressed their debuts.
There was some early pressure from the Championship side who fielded a strong first half line-up. In the 10th minute Curtis Davies hit the post with a powerful header from a corner, won after a great save from Alex Gogic denied Darren Bent.
Nick Blackman looked lively for the away side, but after withstanding the pressure the Silkmen grew in confidence with a strike from Scott Burgess only denied by a block on the edge of the area.
Derby looked dangerous via the aerial route, with the presence of Bent and Davies and Macclesfield’s triallist ‘keeper Alex Gogic dealt with the pressure well, a confident presence in the box.
Newly-signed Elliott Durrell was particularly impressive for the hosts, forcing Mitchell into a couple of fine saves towards the end of the first half. Despite the gulf in league positions and perceived quality, the teams went into the dressing rooms with the score at 0-0.
As is the protocol with pre-season fixtures both teams made several changes at half-time, with the visitors changing the entire team apart from Jamie Hanson, giving the fans a chance to see the likes of Scott Carson and Ikechi Anya take to the Moss Rose pitch.
The latter provided a different type of test for The Silkmen, with intricate runs and a low centre on of gravity leaving him hard to bring down.
Anya’s footwork let to an early second half free kick for the visitors but the home side’s defence was solid once again to clear away from the area.
Derby piled on the pressure in the second half, but Macclesfield continued to look dangerous on the break, and substitute Courtney Meppen-Walter tried his luck from long range against Ex-England international Carson.
Eventually the Championship side broke through after a Bradley Johnson free kick was blocked by the wall, he collected and fired home in the 72nd minute.
The goal gave Derby that added confidence boost, and birthday boy Mason Bennett - turning 21 today, headed home to double the visitors lead ten minutes after the opener.
Assistant boss Steve Watson was pleased with the way Macc applied themselves against a strong Championship side.
“Obviously you want to win every game but we were playing against a full strength, top end Championship team and I thought for large spells we did very, very well,” he said.
“I thought we caused them problems, in the first half we had as many chances as they did, there were some very good first performances and in preseason you are looking for lads to improve your squad and some of the lads did themselves a lot of favours today.”
Steve went on to discuss
‘You are looking for lads to improve your squad and some did themselves a lot of favours’
some of the players making their debuts in front of the home faithful at the Moss Rose on Saturday afternoon.
He said: “I thought we looked very bright, Scott Burgess looked very good in midfield, Courtney held the bottom of the field as we wanted him to do…Elliott Durrell, Scott Wilson,
Scott Carson featured in goal for a strong Derby County side
Elliott Durrell impressed for Macc