First of all I congratulate Atherton LR on the win, and Secondly when I see comments of deserved victory I have to question it. For me, deserved is when a team dominates a game from start to finish, and unless I was with the man on the moon, at no time did our opponents dominate the game, just the opposite. We dominated the game, had we have had a clinical natural finisher on the pitch and despite our opponents scoring three goals, they would and should have been well out of site. Only last week I muted we needed a ruthless finisher, it was proved today against Atherton. We got a good early lead from a well taken goal from Anthony Hall but Anthony should have come away with at least an hat-trick this afternoon. Don't get me wrong, they weren't all bad missed opportunities, some credit must go to the Atherton Keeper especially the reaction save he made just before half time. 
Credit to Atherton with their equaliser capitalising on a rare error from our captain who incidentally should probably not have played due to a chest infection. However whilst I credit Atherton for taking the lead, again for the second week running their second goal came about due to an official failing in his responsibilities when not only was Callum Hewitt blatantly fouled but the infringing player continued to lay on top of him preventing him to get up to recover. The fact that the official failed to react to the challenge on Callum brought about a reaction from Ryan Siddle. Ryan was then sin binned and due to something said towards the official the red quickly followed for a comment. 
This put us down to ten men and still went for it in order to get us back into the game, which resulted in a third break away goal for the visitors and almost a fourth when Bradley Hancock made a rash challenge in the box for a penalty. I had no issues with that decision but our keeper Henry Turner made one of only two saves in the game he has had to make.
The manager finished by saying, again I congratulate Atherton on their win but I question the word deserved, as for Bacup, if I don't find a clinical finisher quickly then we could be in trouble.



"The scoreline certainly does not reflect our boys performance. We played quite well in the first half and possession was good and we constantly knocked on the door with more than our fair share of opportunities.

The frustrating part for me was going a goal down before the break, and lets be honest, it came down to incompetent officiating by a linesman with the ball clearly over the line. In reality this should have been a throw to us and we made the cardinal sin of stopping and not playing to the referees whistle. From that play Pilkington were awarded a free kick at the edge of the penalty area and struck it well beyond Harry.

In the second half the incompetence of the officials again played a major factor when, Kyle Siddle was wiped out in the box, no penalty given. All credit to Pilkington though on their second goal. A good inter passing before the ball was smashed goal bound from twenty five yards out, yet again giving Harry no chance, every credit to the lad who picked his spot.

The next goal for both sides was vital, sadly it was our lads that gifted them the opportunity at a time when we had Pilkington pinned back. My defender had done the hard work by dispossessing their player, he then dwells on the ball and gets his pocket picked.

The fourth goal was another clinical long range effort that gave our keeper no chance side footing into the top corner from the edge of the area. Anthony Hall struck a free kick that sailed past their keeper giving us a consolation goal. As I said at the beginning, the scoreline does not do our performance justice, this said I do think in the final third we must start to execute the right pass at the right time.

We also need to be more positive rather than over playing and make the right runs in order to not get caught offside. Disappointing scoreline, all we can do is go again on Tuesday at home to Golcar United...get behind the lads"



“It’s always a difficult game up at Holker and it’s usually a game of two halves due to the slope. So during that first period we knew that they would be a lot of defending to do. I thought we dealt with the pressure well but as always happens with us we often seem to make uncharacteristic mistakes and that’s exactly what happened for the first goal.


I felt that if Davison Banda would’ve adjusted his body position better he would have cleared the danger. Instead he opted to dangle his leg at it, missed the ball and gave the forward the license to run through on goal and slot it clinically passed Harry.


After that just before half-time another situation came. A situation that disappointed me. The ball has been allowed to come across our goal from our left side. I can accept the ball coming into the box because the player marking out on the left was Brad Hancock and he was carrying a hip injury and was substituted at the break. What I can’t defend is the way the full back as managed to get away from Anthony Hall at the back post and get their second goal. It should’ve never happened in a month of Sundays. We were in a comfortable position, two on one and Anthony has switched off and allowed the lad to get away. 


We changed things a bit in the second half to complement the fact we were going down the slope. We were forced into changes with injuries to Brad and Anthony by replacing them with Milo Ogden and Joel giving us more attacking options and putting pressure on Holkers rearguard.


We did have a lot of possession in the second half but could break them down. We huffed and puffed but couldn’t find a way to score, and unfortunately the game fizzled out.


You could say that the game was one of fine margins and yet again individual mistakes have cost us in the end. I think we couped well with the physicality of Holker but the disappointment comes from our decision making. And coming away with nothing wasn’t a good feeling but I can’t remember the last time we actually gained a point up there. 


We can’t feel sorry for ourselves. So we brush ourselves down and go again…. “ 


Despite the fact that we had to come from a goal down to then take a 3-1 lead with only a quarter of the game left, it was disappointing to have drawn the game from a two goal lead, and yet again it was down to bad defending. When I talk about bad defending it's not pointing the finger at our defenders as such, more talking about the team out of possession defending. All we had to do was to put a block of five in front of our back four, nullify any space, and in this our strikers have to take some of the responsibility by dropping on the end of our midfield. The fact this did not happen allowed Daisy Hill to exploit this by working the gaps which was enough to get them back on level terms. 

It was a great shame really because the boys had worked hard throughout the game, but when players dont listen this or more to the point strikers shirking their  defensive responsibilities, we finished the last ten mins with ten men following a Ryan Sidall late challenge resulting in a second yellow card. 

Both Dave Felgate and myself say time and time again that the Ryan's commitment and enthusiasm is second to none, but he must learn it is not always necessary for him to go and win the ball, this was one of those situations given that he was already on a yellow card from previous, but this apart, Siddal, along with his midfield counterparts of milo and Hewitt were a massive improvement on our previous game. The icing on the cake was the outstanding quality finish to give us a three one lead, our regret being Ryan's quality finish  was not good enough to see us over the line. His second goal of the afternoon was that special it deserved to secure us the three points, unfortunately it wasn't to be. We did have a penalty claim turned down almost at the end, when their keeper told me after the game it was a stone wall penalty, then the fact it was not given makes me even more perplexed, credit to Daisy Hill for their continued fight spirit and credit to our boys for coming from a goal down, just a pity we did not manage the game better in order to secure the win. 



When one uses the terminology it was 'Men verses Boys', there are several different reasons this terminology can be used. I am going to use it because in terms of AFC Darwen's overhaul players stature, physicality, they were strong young men in comparison to our young team who's stature & physicality was just that, Men v Boys. AFC Darwen were just too physically stronger than us. We basically were getting out muscled in various areas which prevented us being able to get on the ball forward to feed our strikers.


Obviously I give credit to AFC Darwen, no way were they going to give us any chance of getting a grip on the game. They pressed, they were stronger and also brighter in mind, this all said, their opening goal had an element of luck when it deflected off Oliver Crew passed Harry Turner who most certainly would have had the ball covered. We had opportunities to have made it 1-1 at the break, but it wasn't to be. 


The second half just prior to our opponents getting their second, they managed to clear our effort off the line, but credit to the scorer of their second goal, it was very much a quality finish picking out the top corner and giving Turner no chance. 


Their third goal just typified my point of a vast contrast in physicality. Young Alex Mellor had tracked their striker but a basic hand off pushed Alex a side before getting into an area, fronting up our goal keeper who had no chance, these two second half goals apart, in the second half following a tweak on our shape and the introduction of Alex Nwachukwu and Alex Mellor, we did on several occasions work ourselves into some great positions to do some damage, this was epitomised  when we pulled a goal back. It was an excellent move down our right, joel drilled the ball across the box,  Nwachukwu flicked the ball cleverly towards Anthony Hall who scored with an excellent finish. We were constantly knocking on the door, but the vast differences between the two teams was physicality.  Going to the gym and working on their upper bodies would be a good start.



Over the past 24 hours football in England has almost come to a standstill with all professional fixtures being postponed until further notice in relation to the severity of COVID-19 Coronavirus, and following those discussions the vast majority of the leagues in England have taken the decision to postpone their fixtures until more information is made available by the FA which we believe will be made available when they meet on Monday 16th March.


In fact one of our own players was recently sent home from work to self isolate as a precautionary measure after showing signs of contracting the virus. This same player was also present at training on Thursday evening, and in turn another player in close proximity to the player in question has also reported signs of contracting the virus.


This information has been relayed to the league who are fully supportive of any decisions the club and our opponents decide in relation to the game.

The manager, Brent Peters has spoken to the match official and our opponents, Golcar United, and it was decided by the official that the game would be postponed on health and safety grounds.

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