The Non-League Football Paper - - VANARAMA NATIONAL LEAGUE - By Nick Lough­lin

MACCLESFIELD showed why they pos­sess the best away record in the National League after they stole vic­tory at Hartle­pool United.

Macc were sec­ond best for 85 min­utes at Vic­to­ria Park but nabbed two goals in the last five min­utes to record their eighth win on the road this sea­son.

Late goals from Ryan Lloyd and Keith Lowe put Macc a point off top spot and boss John Askey said: “It’s a great feel­ing, our away record is fan­tas­tic with eight wins this sea­son and it’s pleas­ing to score so late like that.

“Full credit to our play­ers for work­ing their socks off again and we played some good foot­ball. We had chance to put away, but we have 41 points at the half­way stage so we will take that.’’

Op­po­site num­ber Craig Har­ri­son wasn’t quite so chirpy, how­ever. He kept his play­ers locked in the dressing room for the best part of TWO HOURS be­fore emerg­ing at 7pm to say: “It’s frus­tra­tion more than any- thing else. Take away four min­utes at the end and we played well. Then we haven’t done our jobs well, ba­sic jobs, nothing spe­cial or out of the or­di­nary. Just what we are after and the two oc­ca­sions we didn’t we are pun­ished.

“De­ci­sion mak­ing has to be bet­ter at key mo­ments. We have been through it in the dressing room, peo­ple picked out, named and told in front of ev­ery­one – which is for the dressing room to man­age.’’

Up un­til the fi­nal stages, Pools played with en­ergy on the front foot with­out re­ally threat­en­ing the Macc goal un­til the 38th minute when they fi­nally broke the dead­lock. Jake Cassidy broke down the right side and picked out Michael Woods, who cracked a low-an­gled fin­ish across keeper Sh­wan Jalal into the net.

Two min­utes later, how­ever, Macc came within a whisker of lev­el­ling with a Scott Burgess from 20 yards which brought a fine save from Scott Loach.

Macc were out early for the sec­ond half and were al­most soon two-down. First Carl Mag­nay’s shot was blocked and then a storm­ing run from Woods ended in the area when he ran out of gas.

Macc still failed to re­ally trou­ble Loach, while Ja­mal was busy keep­ing out shots from Con­nor New­ton and Jack Munns, the lat­ter also curl­ing a shot wide after be­ing teed up by Mag­nay.

But the vis­i­tors stole a lev­eller on the break. A low ball was fizzed across the face of goal by El­liott Dur­rell and Ryan Lloyd slid in to con­vert for an un­likely lev­eller.

And min­utes later, Macc stole it. As a header came back off the bar, Lowe was on hand to nod in the sim­plest of win­ners.

PIC­TURE: Me­dia Im­age

GAME OVER: Keith Lowe of Macclesfield Town cel­e­brates after scor­ing his late win­ner

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