Report: Atherton Collieries 6-1 Stockport County

Thank the lord for Jordan Cover. In a matter of just six second half minutes, he turned what looked to be a run-of-the-mill pre-season bore-fest into something quite special. With just four attempts at goal between the 49th and 55th minute of the match, Cover found the net on every occasion, marking one of the most remarkable goal hauls you will ever see at any level. The game was thankful for Cover's influence. The second half substitute helped us forget about the abysmal first half - which in truth was reminiscent of the Disaster of Gijon, when West Germany and Austria played out a goalless draw to ensure both progressed in the 1982 World Cup. That first half, as unmemorable as it was, did include one goal, however. Mark Kirby's low strike left the goalkeeper stranded to give Colls a 1-0 lead. And that was pretty much that for the opening 45 minutes. A good run out against lively opposition, manager Michael Clegg will probably tell you. But it was not much of a spectator occasion. So much did the first half drain the life out of some supporters, they were still refueling their beer tanks in the clubhouse as Stockport leveled just 30 seconds into the second half. But then, up stepped Cover, who produced the same sort of sensational form in front of goal that Mark Battersby produced game-on-game for Colls last season. First he pounced on a defensive error before slotting home to give Colls their lead back, before benefiting from a startling run by Mark Truffas before smashing home to extend the scoring to 3-1. He completed a five-minute hat-trick straight from kick-off - and just when the faithful fans who stuck around thought it was done, his header cannoned off the underside of the crossbar to complete his personal scoring. Four goals in six minutes. Suddenly, 10 minutes into the second half, we had gone from witnessing a true abomination of a first half to seeing six goals in the match. Kris Holt could have bagged before the end with a mazing run into the penalty area, but could not direct his effort goalwards. But a sixth goal was found when 16-year-old debutant Joe Bibey slotted past the helpless keeper to complete the scoring. Full time: Atherton Colls 6-1 Stockport County XI Atherton Collieries: Danny Taberner, Jake Kenny, Nathan Battersby, Luke Gibson, Nathan Ogden, Ahmed Sullay, Matt Cross, Matty Boland, Wes Bancroft, Lewis Coleman, James Kirby - Substitutes: Keith Wedge, Gareth Carson, Kristian Holt, Ben Hardcastle, Mark Truffas, James Moore, Joe Bibey, Jordan Cover  Match report by Aaron Flanagan The views expressed in this match report are those of the author

Vacancy: Kit Man/Woman

Atherton Collieries are currently looking for someone to fill the position of First Team Kit Man or Woman ahead of the 2024/25 Northern Premier League

Read More