Atherton Collieries progressed to the Second Round of the FA Vase after beating Daisy Hill 8-0 at New Sirs.

The second meeting of the season between these two local rivals produced another eight goals; this time it was far more one sided. A place in the Second Round Proper of the FA Vase was up for grabs and Collieries recorded an 8-0 mauling of Daisy Hill to book their place in Monday’s draw. The result equals Collieries best ever result since the formation of the NWCFL in 1982. In April 1995 Collieries beat Squires Gate 8-0 and then beat Bacup by the same score four months later.

Daisy Hill came into the match buoyed by their encouraging performance in the previous meeting between the two sides. They scored three goals and must have been confident of replicating this damage to a normally resilient Colls backline. No such joy for the home side who came up against a backline that showed no signs of conceding. The back four were first to every ball and not one header was lost. Collieries goalkeeper Danny Taberner was merely a spectator for the afternoon.

The match was over after just seven minutes when the visitors raced into a 3-0 lead. The first shot of the match actually came from Daisy Hill when Craig Farnworth smashed the ball low towards goal from 30 yards out. The resulting goal kick saw play move up field and a corner was awarded to Colls. Mark Truffas swung the ball towards the near post where Kris Holt was on hand to head past Daisy goalkeeper Aaron Ashley.

Just a minute later and Collieries doubled their lead when a flowing counter attack ended with Brad Cooke hammering the ball into the goal. Great build up play down the left hand side saw Matty Boland play the ball across the face of goal where Cooke simply had to beat the goalkeeper.

Arguably the best goal of the afternoon came on seven minutes when Mark Battersby picked the ball up in the middle of the pitch. Pivoting on the spot he chipped the ball over the Daisy defence to Ben Hardcastle. Taking one touch to move the ball forward he then volleyed it into the bottom left hand corner from the edge of the area.

On 14 minutes Cooke found himself one-on-one with the goalkeeper following a precise through ball from Holt. Unfortunately goalkeeper Ashley made a good save to prevent Colls from further extending their lead.

Collieries hit the post on 26 minutes when once again Daisy found it hard to cope with the attacking pace and movement of their visitors. Mark Truffas fed the ball to the left hand wing for Ben Hardcastle. The Daisy Hill right back was easily beaten and the ball was cut back across the face of goal for Mark Battersby who steered the ball against the left hand post.

Battersby was denied again three minutes later when a similar move resulted in his latest effort being cleared off the goal line. The striker was to get his first goal of the afternoon just a minute later from the penalty spot.

Cooke once again found himself one-on-one with the goalkeeper, with Daisy defender Simon Farrell chasing back to put in a last ditch challenge. You sensed Cooke would have scored, but Farrell rather carelessly brought the Colls skipper down and was sent off for his troubles. If the match wasn’t already out of Daisy’s reach, it certainly was now. Battersby stepped up and sent the ball past Ashley to make it 4-0.

On 35 minutes Jake Kenny played a long ball over to Mark Truffas to switch play. Truffas’ first touch set him off down the left hand wing before he cut in and curled the ball just wide of the right hand post.

Four minutes later and it was 5-0 when careless play gifted Collieries another. Mark Battersby was presented with the ball close to the halfway line and a through ball was sent to Matty Boland almost immediately. Playing against his former club, Boland needed no invitation to score and curled the ball around Ashley from the edge of the area.

41 minutes and Ashley pulled off a fantastic double save to deny Truffas and then Holt. Despite being 5-0 down the goalkeeper was having a man of the match performance for the hosts.

With a minute of the first half remaining the Colls Crazy Gang were celebrating again when Mark Battersby rounded the goalkeeper and passed the ball into an empty net.

The final shot of the first half saw Truffas hit the crossbar from a tight angle. If it had gone in it would have been one of Truffas’ best goals for Colls but it just wasn’t his day and he somehow didn’t get his name on the scoresheet.

Half time

Michael Clegg’s side came out five minutes early for the second half and started off where they had finished before the break. Granted it took five minutes to record their first shot of the half but this period of play was just as one sided and arguably boring for a neutral.

Matty Boland received the ball on the edge of the area and volleyed it towards goal. A Daisy Hill defender managed to get a leg in front of the shot which steered it marginally over the crossbar. The resulting corner saw the ball fall to substitute Andrew Heald who saw his powerful stinging effort palmed away by Ashley; another fantastic save.

Collieries were guilty of showboating at times, with one group of fans even breaking out into a chorus of “It’s just like watching Brazil” but they were soon silenced when their very own Neymar – Wes Bancroft – did everything but score when in front of goal. He danced his way into the area, swivelled past two challenges and even did a shimmy before he fired his effort towards the neighbouring cricket club.

55 minutes and it was 7-0 to Colls when Ben Hardcastle scored at the second attempt. He dribbled into the area and hit the ball towards the near post from a difficult angle. Ashley could only parry the ball out into the box and Hardcastle fired the ball through a crowd into the back of the net.

Truffas – still keen to get his goal – caused havoc down the right hand side in the second half accompanied by right back Jake Kenny who was also keen to get in on the action. Truffas hit the crossbar for the second time of the match on 61 minutes when he curled the ball towards the top left hand corner from the edge of the area.

Various opportunities came and went for Colls, with Aaron Ashley pulling off a succession of fantastic saves to keep the scoreline lower than it otherwise would have been.

The final goal of the afternoon came on 84 minutes through Jordan Cover. The substitute netted a true poachers goal, tapping in from close range after the ball was squared to him by Jake Kenny.

A second penalty was awarded to Collieries deep into added on time and Battersby once again was elected to take it. A goal here would have been record breaking for the club and it would have been yet another hat trick for the striker. The ball was hit low to the left and it bounced back off the post signalling the end of the match.

A fantastic performance from Collieries; simply outstanding. Daisy Hill weren’t poor, they were just outclassed across the pitch from the very first whistle. In truth the score line flatters the hosts as it could have quite easily ended up 15-0.

Atherton Collieries: Danny Taberner, Jake Kenny, James Brooks, Brad Cooke, Mark Ayres, Gaz Carson, Matty Boland (Jordan Cover), Ben Hardcastle (Wes Bancroft), Kris Holt (Andrew Heald), Mark Battersby, Mark Truffas – Substitutes: Andrew Heald (Kris Holt), Wes Bancroft (Ben Hardcastle), Jordan Cover (Matty Boland), Nathan Battersby, Matt Grimshaw

Daisy Hill: Aaron Ashley, Simon Farrell, Craig Naylor, Ryan Mee, Craig Farnworth, Robbie Todd, Scott Winstanley, Jake Foster, Curtis Cummins, Andrew Buckley, Stephen Barlow – Substitutes: Michael Gervin, Adam Farnworth, Thomas Pryce, Ashley Watson, Lee Green

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