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Classic Encounters: Macclesfield Town 4 v 1 Cambridge United. 5th December 1998.

2 May 2019

As we continue our build-up to Saturday's vital Sky Bet League Two clash with Cambridge United, we take you back to December 1998 when the two sides met at the Moss Rose in a memorable FA Cup tie.

After an epic battle against non-league Slough Town in the FA Cup First Round, Sammy McIlroy’s Second Division stars took on Cambridge United in the Second Round.

On a bitterly cold December afternoon, The Silkmen took a break from their league campaign, as they faced The U’s for a place in the coveted Third Round of the competition.

The hosts started brightly, with Stuart Whitaker terrorising the visiting defence on both flanks for much of the first period.

John Askey would give Macc the lead ten minutes before the interval, yet it was clear for all to see that one goal would not be enough against a Cambridge side who fought gallantly against their Football League superiors.

On 56 minutes, parity was restored when the visitors silenced the Star Lane End, yet former Manchester United forward Graeme Tomlinson was then to take centre stage with a devastating eleven minute hat-trick.

He would fire The Silkmen ahead on the hour mark, after he confidently rounded Shaun Marshall in the Cambridge goal and five minutes later he bagged his second with a powerful drive to end the game as a contest.

Tomlinson secured the match ball on 71 minutes, firing an unstoppable drive into the net from fifteen yards out.

It was a great confidence booster for the side and for Tomlinson in particular, due to the fact that the recent arrival Pedro Mathias and the extended loan of Peter Smith meant that his place in the starting eleven was under constant threat.

Macc would face Premier League opposition in the Third Round, with a trip to Highfield Road to face Coventry City.

Macclesfield Town: Price, Tinson, Hitchen, Payne, Wood, Sodje (Ingram 74), Askey, Sorvel, Tomlinson, Sedgemore, Whittaker (Davenport 82)

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