The new season is drawing ever closer and with just 17 days till we see the release of our SkyBet League Two fixtures, we’ll be taking a look at our opponents for the upcoming campaign. First up on the list is Bury, who were condemned to relegation from League One last season.
Bury were formed in 1885 by Aiden Arrowsmith, through the coalition of the Bury Wesleyans and Bury Unitarians. After winning the Lancashire Challenge Cup in 1892, the club then joined the Football League Second Division in 1894. Bury’s membership of the Football League from 1894 is now the 3rd longest ongoing run, following behind Preston North End and Notts County.
At the start of the 20th century, Bury enjoyed their most successful period to date, winning the FA Cup in 1900 and 1903 with wins over Southampton and Derby County respectively. Their second triumph remains arguably the most impressive in FA Cup history, as they achieved success without conceding a goal in the entire competition. Their 6-0 victory over Derby remains to be an FA Cup Final record.
Between 1923 and 1929, The Shakers enjoyed a six-year spell in the first division. However, they were relegated at the end of the 1929 season and have never played in the top-tier of football since.
At the start of the 21st century Bury were plunged into a financial crisis, and the club was relegated to League Two in the 2001/02 season following a spell in administration for financial irregularities.
In 2005, Bury became the first football club to score a thousand goals in each of the top four tiers of the English Football League. Two seasons later, they were the first team to be bizarrely thrown out of the FA Cup for fielding an ineligible player in their second-round victory over Chester City. A 16-game winless run followed, and The Shakers survived relegation to the Conference by the skin of their teeth.
Since then Bury have been plagued with financial insecurity and have found themselves bouncing between League One and League Two for the past decade. A transfer embargo in December 2012 helped condemn Bury to relegation to League Two, but the club bounced back two seasons later under the guidance of Kevin Blackwell, boasting a club-record points haul of 85 to finish the campaign third.
Gigg Lane has been the home to The Shakers since their inauguration in 1885, however it wasn’t officially declared as their ground until it was handed over by the Earl of Derby as a gift. The stadium has seen numerous developments during its 133-year period, and now holds a capacity crowd of 11,840.
The 2017/18 season proved to be a disastrous one for The Shakers as they finished at the foot of the League One table.
Despite an overhaul in playing staff under Lee Clark, which seen the likes of Jermaine Beckford arrive at Gigg Lane, Bury struggled to match the expectations that preceded them.
After collecting just 12 points from his 16 games, former Birmingham boss Clark was sacked following Bury’s 1-0 defeat at the hands of Doncaster Rovers.
Club veteran Ryan Lowe filled the vacant managerial hot seat on a temporary basis before former club icon Chris Lucketti took the role on a permanent basis.
Lucketti spent six seasons as a player with the club, making 235 league appearances between 1993 and 1999, however the former Shakers captain failed to win a single game in charge, enduring a goal drought that lasted over 12 hours before he was finally sacked after just 10 games.
Lowe returned for the rest of the season as Bury chairmen Stewart Day sought for a short-term solution, but the appointment proved to be too little too late as the Shakers won just four of their last 19 matches, ending their three year stay in League One.
Head to Head
The Silkmen have met Bury on 18 league occasions, with 14 of those fixtures appearing in League Two.
Macclesfield wins: 4
Games Drawn: 6
Bury wins: 8
How to get there
By train – Train to Manchester Piccadilly. You will find a tram service to Bury Metrolink, which is approximately a 10/15 minute walk from the ground.
By car – Head towards the M60 heading northbound onto the M66. Then take exit 2 onto the A58, before turning left onto Heywood Street. Follow the road straight down to Parkshill Road before turning left onto Market Street. At the next roundabout you will find Gigg Lane.
Gigg Lane, Bury, BL9