Depleted Colne hold promotion contenders

Thomas Berwick puts into a 2-0 lead.
Thomas Berwick puts into a 2-0 lead.

Colne saw off the challenge of promotion contenders Glossop North End in a fighting display in a 0-0 draw at the XLCR Stadium on Wednesday evening.

The Reds were severely hit by injuries and manager Steve Cunningham played the full 90 minutes in the side, alongside several fringe players who emerged with great credit.

The visitors came with clear intentions to take the three points but Colne made a lively start and gave the opposition plenty to think about.

The Reds should have taken the lead after 20 minutes when Mark Coyne raced clear on a ball over the top of the defence but allowed keeper Greg Hall to save at his feet.

Chris Anderson and Tom Berwick stamped their class on midfield and Stevie Cassidy was a constant thorn in the side of the Glossop defence.

Glossop stepped up the pace at the beginning of the second half and the Colne defence needed to produce some resolute defending.

When the Reds won a free kick on the counter attack, Berwick’s pile driver was too hot for Hall to hold on to and Coyne fired in the rebound.

But Colne’s celebrations were short-lived as the flag was raised for off-side.

In the closing stages, the Reds brought on Jason Hart and it was Colne who looked the more likely to get a winner.

But in the end a draw was a fair result and a satisfying one for Cunningham.

On Saturday, the Reds beat Stockport Sports 3-2 at home, snatching all three points with a late comeback.

The Reds took the early lead after six minutes when Brandon Barski was put through on the left and his low cross was slotted home by Berwick.

Two minutes after the interval, Stockport were reduced to 10 men when Tom Bane was sent off for a two-footed tackle. And six minutes later, Chris Anderson doubled Colne’s lead with a curling free kick just inside the far post.

Stockport reduced the deficit after 66 minutes when Alex Crowe blasted an unstoppable free kick past Chris Thompson from 20 yards, and 11 minutes later, they were level terms when Crowe’s free kick was bundled in by Paul Walley.

Stockport went down to nine men on 82 minutes when Jordan Young was sent off for dissent, and in the last minute, Anderson was brought down in the area and Berwick blasted home the spot kick.

Tomorrow, the Reds are at West Didsbury and Chorlton, and on Monday, the reserves host Lancaster City in the Galaxy Lancashire League Cup quarter-final (7-45 p.m.).

DAVE PRIESTLEY