Colne show resilience

Billy Priestley battles for the ball against Alsager on Saturday
Billy Priestley battles for the ball against Alsager on Saturday

COLNE’S excellent recent run in the league came to a shuddering halt on Saturday.

But they showed great resilience to bounce back against Bacup on Tuesday night.

On Saturday, having had three players sent off, they went down 2-0 at home to Alsager.

And on Tuesday night, on a typical Colne early Autumn evening of gale force winds and driving rain, the Reds battled to a 1 - 0 victory.

Manager Nigel Coates was forced into two changes due to injuries, with Andy Moore replacing keeper Jamie Scott, out with a broken hand, and Richard Johnson replacing influential Joe Garvin.

In a game of few chances and little goalmouth action, the Reds played up the slope in the first half and into the elements.

After 15 minutes the Reds worked the ball up the right wing via Sam Hayes, who crossed into the area for Danny Boyle to stab wide from near the penalty spot.

Shortly after a Neil Stansfield cross into the area caused confusion and the Reds’ appeals for hand ball were turned down b y the referee.

The next Colne attack saw a Johnson pass well-worked between Mark Threlfall and Stansfield, who turned his marker and produced a tantilising cross which just evaded the onrushing Boyle.

The second half saw defences on top, and the first goalmouth action came on 65 minutes when a well-worked right wing move saw an Andy Tinker shot blocked and collected by the keeper.

On a rare Bacup attack, a ball from the left into the area resulted in a thunderous shot superbly blocked by Billy Priestley probably preventing the visitors taking the lead.

Colne took the lead on 75 minutes when, from a throw in on the right, the ball was played back to Danny Gleave whose pin point cross was headed into the top corner by captain Michael Cruz.

Colne continued to press their opponents back into their own half and saw out the game with a degree of comfort.

However, on Saturday, the official dominated the game at home to Alsager.

Colne began brightly and dominated the opening 10 minutes, where they forced four corners in quick succession, with Billy Priestley heading two chances just over.

The big centre half was involved in the next piece of action when a long ball out of the Alsager defence caused a coming together with an forward just outside the area, which the referee deemed to be a red card offence to the consternation of most of the fans.

The resultant free kick was blocked, and moments later Colne broke out of defence, and a ball over the top released an over lapping Sam Hayes, but his shot was blocked for a another corner.

Colne continued to have the majority of chances, with Mark Threlfall coming close on a couple of occasions.

On 40 minutes, a quick break by the visitors saw the home keeper Jamie Scott catch the ball, only to be caught dangerously late by an on-rushing forward, with the official awarding a yellow card after the resulting melee.

Disaster struck two minutes after half-time when a challenge by full back Joe Garvin was deemed dangerous and the full back received a second yellow card, leaving the reds to battle on with nine men.

With a numerical advantage, the visitors dominated possession, and on the hour, Scott punched a left wing cross to the edge of the area, where it was lobbed back only to hit the bar and bounce away.

Colne’s only real chance in the second half came on 70 minutes when a Threlfall flick was played through by Michael Cruz to Danny Boyle, who cleverly turned in the area only to see his shot clear the bar.

The visitors’ continuing pressure told on 80 minutes when a free kick was played into the area and Pearson shot home via the left hand post.

Keeper Scott saved the Reds from going further behind when he spectacularly turned over a shot from the edge of the area.

The Reds conceded a second goal when they were caught out by a left wing counter attack, and Boyle was adjudged to have brought down the forward, with the subsequent penalty being converted.

Things went from bad to worse when Colne were reduced to eight men when Threlfall was sent off for retaliation.

The Reds have no game this weekend and are in next in action on Tuesday with another home fixture against near neighbours Padiham with a 7-45 kick-off.

Final Score: Colne 0-2 Alsager Town

• Colne Reserves continued their excellent start to the season with a comprehensive 6-2 win at Formby last Thursday.

Colne made the perfect start when after five minutes Dom Allen broke down the right, and his low, hard cross to the far post was played back into the goalmouth by Sam Reeves for a Formby defender to slice into his own goal.

Colne increased their lead only three minutes later when a long throw by Reeves was collected in the area by Joe Walker, who cooly tucked the ball into the bottom corner.

Colne extended their lead after 12 minutes when a long diagonal ball by full back Luke McVarish released Ben Bridson on the right, who, after beating a defender, put the goalkeeper under pressure, and his mis-kick was pounced upon by Bridson to stroll the ball into the net.

The goals continued to flow and Formby pulled a goal back on 14 minutes.

Colne, however restored their four-goal lead on 20 minutes when, from a free kick just outside the area, Reeves feigned to take and Dave Blacklock curled the ball into the opposite corner.

Formby pulled another goal back when the referee awarded them a penalty for holding in the area which just eluded a diving James Kenyon.

The first half finished with yet another Colne goal when a long ball from Josh Walne to the left was expertly collected by Reeves, who won the tusle with the full back and then lobbed the ball over the keeper.

The second half was always going to be less eventful, but Colne added a sixth goal in the 56th minutes when a ball over the top was chased to the bye-line by Joe Walker, whose clever low cross was converted by Bridson.