Macclesfield FC 1 Squires Gate 0: League leaders pick up three points

Squires Gate suffered defeat despite a strong performance against the NWCFL Premier Division leaders.

By James Ashton
Sunday, 12th December 2021, 4:45 pm

Gate boss Luke Evans made two changes from the team beaten by Congleton Town, bringing in Isaac Abankwah and Chris Webster for Alex Welsh and Sope Awe.

They started the brighter of the two sides, with a dangerous ball across goal from Ryan Riley just evading James Boyd inside the opening three minutes.

Riley’s free-kick deflected into the arms of Macclesfield keeper Sam Ashton before a Jack Iley effort was deflected just over.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Squires Gate were narrowly beaten at Macclesfield FC Picture: Ian Moore

Read More

Read More
Top county honour for manager Luke Evans after ensuring Squires Gate FC survived...

It was Macclesfield who took the lead on 20 minutes, Gate losing possession and Max Bardsley-Rowe breaking in behind before slotting clinically past Mike Hale.

Gate looked to respond, with Saad Mekkaoui-Abouzaid’s curling effort well held.

Hale then made a big save at the other end to deny Brandon Lee before Gate defender Luke Holden was forced off through injury, replaced by Nathan Bartram.

The hosts ought to have doubled their lead on 42 minutes but were unable to force the ball over the line before Gate had to make another change, Abankwah being replaced by Welsh at left-back.

Trailing at the break, Gate started the second half strongly and thought they had equalised on 48 minutes.

Riley received the ball just inside the area and saw his shot parried to Iley, who tapped home but saw the offside flag raised.

Riley went close himself five minutes later, firing just over from the edge of the box, before Neil Danns then volleyed narrowly off target at the other end.

Iley dragged another effort just wide from 18 yards before a Macclesfield free-kick was tapped straight into Hale’s arms by Tom Clare.

Mekkaoui-Abouzaid again showed excellent feet to drive forward on the hour mark, only for his effort to be well held.

A great ball in behind by Riley found Iley but Ashton came out quickly to close down the angle.

Iley had an even better chance on 73 minutes, cutting back on his right foot just inside the box and curling the ball agonisingly wide of the post.

Gate continued to push for an equaliser and dominated possession, but they were unable to break down their hosts.

Evans’ men are back in action on Saturday when they host Charnock Richard.

Squires Gate: Hale, Ridings, Abankwah, Gray, Holden, Muir, Riley, Webster, Iley, Mekkaoui-Abouzaid, Boyd. Subs: Welsh, Rogers, Bartram, Hothersall, Awe.

Thanks for reading. If you value what we do and are able to support us, a digital subscription is just £1 per month for the first two months. Try us today by clicking here