9/02/2019 3:00 pm
Referee: Geoff Eltringham
|Macclesfield Town||Crewe Alexandra|
|Wilson, Cameron, Cole||Bowery, Porter, Ray|
Crewe Alexandra couldn’t quite hold on at the death after an end-to-end Cheshire derby at Moss Rose against Macclesfield Town. The away side had taken the lead 3 times through Jordan Bowery, a Chris Porter penalty and skipper George Ray (in the 95th minute) but were pegged back after goals from Scott Wilson, Nathan Cameron and Reece Cole.
Manager David Artell named an unchanged line-up from the game against Colchester United with loan defenders Aaron Taylor-Sinclair and Jamie Sterry on the bench with Dave Richards, Shaun Miller, Tom Lowery, Owen Dale and Nicky Hunt.
The opening opportunity and goal came in the third minute with Harry Pickering’s lofted ball finding Bowery lobbing the ball over the on-loan Manchester United keeper Kieran O’Hara into the home goal before the first equaliser of the afternoon came with Ben Garratt and George Ray getting in a mix-up with Wilson prodding the ball home after a push on Ray wasn’t given.
Callum Ainley almost gave the Alex the lead moments after the leveller as his strike from just outside the area hit the post before O’Hara made the first decent save of the afternoon with Ray heading Pickering’s inswinging corner goalwards. We would take the lead just after the half-hour mark with O’Hara fouling Porter, getting a yellow card in the process, from a short back-pass with the veteran striker scoring the resulting penalty.
After the break, the action continued with another short-headed back-pass from Ray almost gifting Wilson a second before the Macclesfield striker would be denied an equaliser by a good tackle from Eddie Nolan just after the hour mark.
Town did level on 74 minutes as an inswinging corner from Michael Rose was turned in from close range by defender Cameron after Garratt had dropped the ball. The hosts could have taken the lead on 84 minutes with substitute Liandro Martis’ cross from the right was almost turned into his own net by Pickering before there were 5 minutes of stoppage-time that would live long in the memories.
Firstly, in the 95th minute, George Ray would head home a Lowery corner to send the 1500+ fans behind the goal into pure delight before Cole would level a couple of minutes later, his first Macc goal, after a succession of poor defensive errors from Garratt, Dale and Green would see the away end deflate almost as quickly as the hysteria had started.
We have Carlisle United on Tuesday night at the Alexandra Stadium before a trip to Oldham Athletic next Saturday, a game that could see Paul Scholes make his debut in the home dugout.
What have we learnt from this game?
Whilst most of the focus straight after the game was on Garratt’s performance yesterday, he wasn’t the only one that didn’t play well. Ray’s miscommunication with his keeper for the first goal didn’t help matters and Kirky must have touched the ball about 15 times in the 82 minutes that he was on the pitch for with Owen Dale looking fairly bright in his limited time on the pitch as Richards and Dale coming in for Garratt and Kirk being the two changes that I’d make for Tuesday night.
Special mention to O’Hara though as he kept Macc in the game at 1-1 but was lucky that there wasn’t trouble after the late 3rd goal for Macc, having already been booked and dove into the home fans (bookable offence right?) then winding the Alex fans up.