Reice Charles-Cook’s Macclesfield Town were eliminated from the Stay Intertoto Cup after a courageous display against tournament favourites Lorient.
The French side, controlled by seasoned FIFA player Umot Bozok, look certain to win the cup, however that didn’t stop the Silkmen providing one of their most difficult challenges yet in the tournament.
Le Fee opened the scoring for the favourite as he tapped into an empty net following some superb football from the hosts. Despite their lead, Macc were the team who were taking the game to their opponents. Tollitt proved to be a big influence on the game, hitting the post and seeing a shot cleared off the line after Lorient’s opener.
The French side grew into the game and they doubled their advantage just before the end of the first half when Kitala finished exquisitely into the far corner.
However, Reice’s attacking threat proved to be too hot to handle for Bozok with the Lorient controller. Blyth provided hope for Macc once more as his clinical strike flew past the ‘keeper to bring the score back to 2-1.
Tollitt completed Macc’s ten minute turnaround with an incredible volleyed equaliser which sent the travelling Silkmen delirious.
However, heartbreak struck for the Silkmen deep into stoppage time. Buzok found some space and he smashed in the 1st leg winner from close range, meaning the Silkmen would need another second leg fight back to advance.
Kitala provided an early blow to give Lorient a two goal advantage once more, but Blyth provided a glimmer of hope with a tidy finish to make it 4-3.
Two quick Lorient goals were a sucker punch for Macc and it was an uphill task from then on with tournament favourite Bozok already showcasing his counter attacking abilities.
Blyth’s second of the game and third of the tie looked to be a mere consolation and that was proven to true shortly afterwards. Lorient wrapped up the win with another goal to send Macc out of the Stay Intertoto Cup.
A huge congratulations must go to out virtual manager Reice Charles-Cook who guided us all the way to the final eight of the cup. All at the virtual Moss Rose thank you for your service, Reice.