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Match Report


Posted Tue 03 Jul 12 at 23:09 PM

Silkmen come back to win.

Chris Holroyd’s tremendous individual goal in the 90th minute earned Macclesfield their first league win in four after going two behind in the first half. 

Matthew Barnes-Homer’s 14th of the campaign gave the Silkmen hope and when skipper Nat Brown’s header was judged to have crossed the line eight minutes from time, it set up a thrilling finale culminating in Holroyd’s late winner. 

In terrible wet conditions Macc made a horrendous start by gifting Hyde a goal after just four minutes, with a nightmare return for Brown who looked off the pace in the first half in his first game in almost two months. The captain chested down a cross from the right and seemed unsure whether to leave it for Lance Cronin or clear himself – in the end neither of them dealt with it and allowed Alex Brown to steal in and nick it past them before tucking into the open goal. 

The visitors were obviously full of confidence after winning 7-0 at the weekend, and could have doubled their lead on 8 minutes and again unfortunately it was a Nat Brown error which gave away the chance. A long pass forward seemed to catch the Macc man out and as he turned away, the ball struck him on the back and dropped perfectly for Phil Jevons who forced Cronin into a good save but he should have found the net. 

With conditions underfoot slippery and boggy in parts, Macc looked to get the ball forward quicker than normal, however the more direct approach failed to create many chances. 

The first effort on goal for Macc came on 16 minutes when Craig Braham-Barrett whipped in a cross from the left and picked out Barnes-Homer at the back post who headed just wide of the top corner from six yards. 

In the 21st minute Sam Wedgbury put a cross in from the right after receiving John Paul Kissock’s short corner and Nat Brown’s downward header bounced wide at the back post. 

The Silkmen slowly began to get a foothold in the game but were off target again a few minutes later when Ryan Jackson received the ball back after his own throw-in on the right, before cutting inside into the box and hitting a tame shot which was comfortable held at Chris Dilo’s near post. 

At the other end good work from Scott Spencer, who had played a handful of games on loan for Macc four years ago, allowed him to find Adam Griffin and the left back drew a good stop from Cronin with a vicious near post effort. 

Even taking the poor conditions into account the Macc defence seemed shaky and it seemed certain that another chance would be given away before long. Just before the interval a poor header by Jackson put Spencer through and when Brown got back to try and stop him he was judged to have brought the Hyde striker down in the box. The Macc skipper was furious with the decision and did seem to make some contact on the ball as well as the man. The referee wasn’t going to change his mind though and former Yeovil striker Jevons stepped up and slammed the spot kick low past Cronin. 

Whatever was said at half time seemed to work as Macc came out looking much improved in the second half, limiting Hyde to far less of the ball and keeping them on the back foot. 

Barnes-Homer held the ball up well to find Kissock who blasted well over from outside the box and numerous through balls from Keiran Murtagh were just cut out by the Tigers’ defence to deny Holroyd a run on goal. 

Macc got their lifeline in the 56th minute when Braham-Barrett skipped past his man on the left and stood a perfect ball up for Barnes-Homer at the back post who had the simplest of headers from just a few yards out. 

The home side came within a whisker of striking again almost straight from the restart with Barnes- Homer crossing from the right and finding Kissock, who controlled the ball around 15 yards out before his strike had the keeper beaten but came off the inside of the post, flew across goal and ran out for a goal kick. 

The pressure looked like it was beginning to tell on Hyde who became more panicked themselves at the back, with a number of missed passes or sliced clearances. In the 63rd minute Kissock’s low corner was cut back to Barnes-Homer and his low drive was well held by Dilo, diving low to his left. 

The Tigers should have regained their two goal advantage when Cronin stayed on his line rather than coming out for Griffin’s dangerous inswinging free kick from out on the right, and all it needed was a touch from one of the three players coming in for it, but fortunately for Macc it somehow evaded them all and bounced wide of the far post. 

Barnes-Homer should have done better when unmarked he headed Peter Winn’s free kick well off target from eight yards and minutes later the Macc hitman was found again unmarked this time from Murtagh’s set piece, but he again couldn’t hit the target and volleyed wide of the near post with no defender within yards of him. 

Cronin was called into action to make a string of saves to keep Macc in the game when substitute Matthew Blinkhorn was played through on goal by a neat backheel but shot too close to the keeper. Seconds later he denied the same man again when he was found in the area by fellow sub Stefan Cox, and again the Macc custodian parried expertly. Not to be put off Blinkhorn went for goal yet again when Macc struggled to clear and from the corner of the box his right footed curler skimmed off the top of the cross bar. 

The Silkmen equalised in controversial fashion eight minutes from time when Barnes-Homer crossed from the left and Nat Brown, who had stayed forward following a corner, thundered a header goalwards from only just inside the box. Keeper Dilo caught the ball just under his bar before taking a step backwards to steady himself, which had the linesman flagging to show that he had stepped back over the line with the ball and the referee awarded the goal to Macc’s delight and Hyde’s despair. 

Macc from then on were in the ascendancy pressing on for a winner and came close with three minutes to go when Wedgbury’s corner from the right caused panic in the Hyde box. An initial header was nodded off the line and then a follow up effort came off the bar as the Silkmen just couldn’t force it in. 

Substitute Amari Morgan-Smith saw his thunderous drive blocked just inside the box after a ball was half cleared to him, before Holroyd’s wonderful strike completed the comeback in the last minute. 

The loanee striker held the ball up well after receiving it into his feet and dribbled out wide to the left flank before darting back into the box between two challenges. A gap opened up for him as he did so and he wrong footed the keeper by driving low inside the near post to send the home fans wild and conclude a fantastic turnaround. 

Andy Brinkhurst

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