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This Week In History

20 February 2019

In the latest instalment of our regular feature for the official site, we take a look back at what happened at Macclesfield Town between 17th and 23rd February over the years.

70 years ago - After a credible two-all draw against Stockport County Reserves the previous week, William Edwards' Macclesfield Town headed over to Crewe to face their second-string in the Cheshire League.

Boasting a seven match unbeaten league run, The Silkmen made the journey across Cheshire full of confidence. Yet they were brought back down to earth as The Railwaymen secured a comfortable 3 - 0 victory back on 19th February 1949.

45 years ago - Having progressed through to the FA Trophy Third Round courtesy of a 4 - 0 victory over Worksop Town the previous Tuesday, Eddie Brown's Silkmen side faced two games in as many days forty-five years ago this week.

The first clash saw Hyde United visit the Moss Rose in the Cheshire Senior Cup Second Round. The defending champions secured their safe passage into the Third Round that evening, as goals from Ian Morris and Bruce Birtwistle was enough to hand the hosts a 2 - 0 victory.

Twenty-four hours later, Eddie Brown's side hit the road as a Northern Premier League fixture at Wigan Athletic beckoned.

Macc were in a devastating run of form which would see them unbeaten in eleven games and headed to Springfield Park without fear.

Their confidence proved to be justified - a brace from Bruce Birtwistle was added to by strikes from Graham Heys and Fred Goodwin as Macc ran out 4 - 2 winners in front of 2941 spectators.


25 years ago - Sammy McIlroy's new-look Macclesfield Town side faced a Cheshire derby with Runcorn on 19th February 1994, as they sought to continue their solid league form.

Vauxhall Conference fixtures against The Linnets were renowned as being incredibly hard-fought contests and this one proved no different.

Although Neil Sorvel and Phil Power went close to breaking the deadlock, the contest ended goalless in front of a 1004 strong crowd.

Two days later, Sammy's men returned to the Moss Rose as they faced Worcester City in an FA Trophy Second Round Replay.

The first tie had ended in a rather uninspiring goalless draw at the Victoria Ground - yet the second attempt at finding a winner proved to be anything but.

Three goals in twelve first half minutes put The Silkmen firmly in the driving seat that evening, as Phil Power, John Askey and an inadvertent own goal gave Sammy's men a commanding half-time lead.

Worcester launched a spirited fightback in the second period, yet their two strikes proved to be little more than a consolation as Macc progressed into the Third Round where they would face lowly Billingham Synthonia.

10 years ago - Keith Alexander's Macclesfield Town faced Notts County on 17th February 2009, as The Silkmen looked to bounce back from three consecutive defeats at the hands of Rotherham United, Exeter City and Rochdale.

The Moss Rose faithful proved to be in fine voice that evening and the players unquestionably responded - particularly within the opening exchanges.

After Simon Yeo had sent a guilt-edged header wide with less than five minutes on the clock, the former Lincoln City hitman made amends by seizing on a loose ball and firing Macc into the lead on 26 minutes.

Lee Bell and Gareth Evans could well have doubled our lead, before future Silkman Matty Hamshaw restored parity for the visitors on 72 minutes when he majestically volleyed home Myles Weston's teasing cross.

Evans subsequently saw his ferocious effort cannon off the angle in the dying seconds, leaving Alexander's men with a share of the spoils.

1 year ago - This time last year, John Askey's Macclesfield Town embarked on a season-defining three day period which saw them face the daunting prospect of trips to fellow promotion-chasers Aldershot Town and Tranmere Rovers in rapid succession.

Yet, our blue and white clad heroes stepped up to the challenge with passion and defiance as they played their part in what proved to be a memorable seventy-two hours.

First up was the trip down to Hampshire, and in front of a raucous away following Macc took control of the clash with barely three minutes on the clock.

Nathan Blissett surged through on goal and when he was impeded by Will Evans, the referee not only brandished an early red card but also handed Askey's side the perfect chance to break the deadlock.

Up stepped Danny Whitaker and he was calmness personified as he confidently despatched from twelve yards out.

Three minutes into the second period and our lead was doubled, as Elliott Durrell's darting run saw him take the ball around the Aldershot 'keeper and provide Nathan Blissett with a straight-forward finish in front of the shell-shocked home fans.

Harbouring promotion dreams if their own, The Shots rallied and would reduce the deficit just after the hour mark when Scott Rendell rolled home a controversially-given penalty.

All the subsequent home pressure was gallantly repelled, as the first-half of an epic double-header was completed in consummate style.

Three days later, we made the trip over to Birkenhead to face a Tranmere Rovers side hot on our heels at the National League summit.

Despite the fact that the hosts had secured nine consecutive victories in front of their own fans, the Silkmen fans descended on Prenton Park in gargantuan numbers - all of whom were in expectant mood.

After soaking up copious amounts of first half pressure, the deadlock was broken during added time when Elliott Durrell's teasing ball into the area was clinically finished by our magic man, Danny Whitaker.

The expected Tranmere onslaught manifested itself after the interval and parity was restored on 49 minutes when Andy Cook's close range header flew past Shwan Jalal in the Silkmen goal.

What followed will unquestionably be etched into the hearts and minds of all present forevermore.

Six minutes after Tranmere's equaliser, Elliott Durrell picked up the ball in the middle of the park and mesmerisingly cut in from the left hand side before emphatically guided the ball into the far corner of the net from twenty-five yards out.

Just after the hour mark, Macc claimed a two-goal advantage when Liam Ridehalgh was penalised for handling in the area and for the second consecutive game, Danny Whitaker made no mistake from twelve yards out.

Durrell continued to terrorise the Tranmere rearguard and just four minutes later he re-enacted his glorious first goal with a carbon-copy second.

In the closing stages, Durrell was withdrawn to a standing ovation from both sets of fans - exemplifying the fact that he had played a monumental role in what proved to be a pivotal battle in our glorious title-winning season.

You can watch highlights from this epic encounter below -

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