Leckenby's Tea Rooms

This top v bottom clash ended as predicted, with a comfortable win for the reincarnation of the former Football League side on a bitterly cold day when most other games in the area were called off.

Leckenby's Tea Rooms

This one survived thanks to the artificial surface and the efforts of over 60 volunteers who cleared the overnight snow from the pitch, leaving a perfect surface upon which to play football.

And credit to the Rams, as their passing game belied their lowly position, allowing them to match their hosts for much of the first half.

Indeed, as they left the pitch for the break, they trailed by a single goal scored in the 18th minute by one of Macc’s former professionals, ex-Bury man Nicky Maynard.

He found space on the edge of the penalty area and his low effort crept in at the far post just beating the low dive from keeper Harry Turner, who had earlier made a fine save from Macc’s James Berry.

It was Berry, however, who gave the home side a two goal cushion early in the second half.

A clearance out evaded the Rams defenders, and Berry, racing onto the through ball from his own half, ran through, rounded Turner, and despite a lunging attempt from Michael Fitzgerald to prevent the ball crossing the line, the assistant referee deemed that it had indeed been in vain.

At that point the home side began to pass the ball around with more confidence with the Rams appearing to accept that to pull back a two goal deficit would be out of the question.

Two goals in quick succession half-way through the second period finally put the game to bed.

Man-of-the-match Berry, celebrating his birthday, then laid on a lovely through ball, initially for Maynard, but Neil Kengni nipped in to place a low drive past Turner from ten yards out, and no sooner had the cheers died down, but it was 4-0.

A ball in from the right hand side only found Oscar Radcliffe who inexplicably side-footed the ball past a helpless Turner for an own goal and finally seal the points for the home side.

That just about summed up the afternoon for Ramsbottom and for the remaining twenty minutes it was a case off damage limitation which succeeded line in keeping the score-line to those four goals.

It’s difficult to judge the overall performance of the team when facing the potential league champions, and the game on Saturday away at Hanley will give Lee Donafee and his coaching staff a better idea as to whether the recent recruits have enough to ensure that the team makes progress in moving away from the bottom of the league table.

Ramsbottom United: Turner, Radcliffe, McKenna, Lugsden, Barlow, Fitzgerald (Collinge 75mins), Hasler-Cregg, Hall, Croughan(Shannon 55mins), Jennings(Donaldson 45mins), Murphy. Subs not used: Ogunby, Osi-Efa

Attendance: 3,517

Pics: Jake Horrocks