Blues prosper from purple patch in league

Warren Beattie scoring Nelson's winner at Bootle on Saturday . ''Picture: Mark Wilkinson
Warren Beattie scoring Nelson's winner at Bootle on Saturday . ''Picture: Mark Wilkinson
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Nelson made it three wins from four as they climbed to fifth in the North West Counties Premier Division table.

The Pendle clubs now make up three of the top five as rivals Barnoldswick Town top the pack while Colne sit in second spot.

The Blues were the first outfit to inflict defeat on Bootle as Mark Fell’s side ran out 2-1 winners on Merseyside.

The hosts took the lead inside five minutes when Josh Hamilton picked out Charlie Kelly in space and his crisp left-footed shot beat Ben Woodhead.

Tempers flared as Bootle’s William Smart clashed with Warren Beattie, but as play resumed the Admirals slowly took control.

With five minutes of the half remaining, Nelson turned the game on its head in emphatic fashion.

A beautifully crisp and incisive passage of play was finished off by Peter Wright as the striker shifted the ball on to his right boot before beating goalkeeper Dave Moran.

And on the stroke of half-time the visitors went in front. Andy Bell provided the delivery from the left hand side and Beattie turned the ball in to the net at the far post.

The second half didn’t provide any more goals, but there was plenty of action.

Bell lifted over Moran and the bar when coasting goal side of Bootle’s rearguard while at the other end James McGrane failed to hit the target when well positioned.

And in stoppage time Michael Ordish sought the equaliser but his free-kick drifted wide.

The Blues extended their purple patch midweek when beating West Didsbury and Chorlton 4-2 at Victoria Park.

Visiting keeper Paul Hughes paid the penalty when upending Wright inside the box and the striker dusted himself off before slotting home from 12 yards.

Debutant Kevin Leadbitter tested Hughes shortly after before Scott Mason struck the foot of the post as play switched ends.

The Blues have had the knack of scoring at key moments in recent outings and Wright struck again to make the home side’s half-time cushion more comfortable, nodding in Leadbitter’s corner.

Hughes atoned for his first half error when denying Wright his hat-trick after the striker raced through one-on-one before Scott Mason halved the deficit when his effort took a huge deflection and wrong footed Woodhead.

The hosts stretched their lead in the 67th minute when Ricky Mercer’s spectacular goal of the month contender cannoned in off the post from 30 yards out. Seven minutes later, under the lights at Little Wembley, the Admirals added a fourth.

Ashley Brierley sprung the counter from his own half, drove all the way in to the penalty area, before firing across Hughes and in to the far corner to open his account for the club.

After Hughes foiled Wright once again with a fine save at full stretch, the away side grabbed a consolation when Lee Gavin lobbed Woodhead to make it 4-2.

The Blues host Ashton Athletic on Lomeshaye Way tomorrow (kick off 3 p.m.).