Vinny Bailey’s second half wonder goal earned all three points for Atherton Collieries as they earned a third successive win, extending their unbeaten run to six games at the expense of their Peak District opponents and former North West Counties League adversaries.
Having defeated Mossley 3-1 last weekend, Micheal Clegg’s charges travelled south in the hope of adding to their previous victory on the road when the black and whites crossed the Welsh border a fortnight ago and ran out 2-1 victors at Colwyn Bay.
On a fine winters day, the hosts started brightly but found Colls goalkeeper Greg Hartley in fine form, coming up with a terrific save after five minutes to claw away a Brad Roscoe header that had seemed destined to be heading for the top corner.
Ten minutes in, Colls had a close call of their own when Glenn Matthews – imperious throughout- struck a 25 yard effort that clipped James Aspinall’s crossbar.
Hartley was to again frustrate the hosts, pulling off another outstanding save on 15 minutes to keep out a Chris Baguley free kick from the edge of the area.
Glossop did eventually find a way past Hartley, going a goal up on 33 minutes when giant centre back Courtney Meppen-Walter nudged the ball home from close range after Colls failed to effectively clear a free kick in to the area.
The one goal margin would last only a matter of seconds, however, as Colls promptly strolled up to the other end to level the scores, Ben Hardcastle curling a beauty of a strike in to the top corner from the edge of the box.
With a strong breeze at their backs, Colls started the second half strongly with Danny Lafferty heading over from a corner before the moment that would seal the victory for Colls.
Glossop goalkeeper James Aspinall, on a work experience loan from Bolton Wanderers, claimed a Glenn Matthews free kick and looked to spark a home counter attack, but on trying to throw the ball to his midfield, the alert Vinny Bailey snaffled the loose ball, took one touch and picked his spot from thirty yards out, sailing the ball over Aspinall’s head and in to the net to the joy of the visiting hordes behind the goal.
With Bailey, a recent returnee to the black and whites after a spell with Marine, Josh Messer and Brad Cooke dominating midfield and Ben Hardcastle and Glenn Matthews a constant threat down the flanks, Colls never looked in danger of losing their lead and were able to celebrate a third successive win, extending their unbeaten run to six games in the process and climbing as high as fourteenth in the league table.
Colls are back in action on Monday evening when Brighouse Town are the visitors to the Kensite Stadium before welcoming Hyde United to downtown Athy next Saturday.
Glossop North End: James Aspinall, Bradley Roscoe, Callum Spooner, Courtney Meppen-Walter, Adam Jones, Kane Hickman, Mike Roddy, Chris Baguley, Ben Deegan, Callum Chippendale, Ryan White (Ruben Jerome 60′). Substitutes (not used); Cavell Coo, Will Shawcross, Mark Haslam, Jack Higgs
Atherton Collieries: Greg Hartley, Jake Kenny, Daniel Lambert, Daniel Lafferty, Chris Lynch, Josh Messer, Ben Hardcastle, Brad Cooke ©, Jordan Cover (Adam Farrell 69′), Vinny Bailey, Glenn Matthews. Substitutes (not used); Matt Grimshaw, Neil Chappell, James Sigsworth
Man of the Match: Glenn Matthews
Match Report: Matt Lawton
Photo: Joseph Gibbons