It was to be a contentious goal decision which decided the inaugural match at the newly named Skuna Stadium. Colls came into this FA Cup game having swept aside Skelmersdale United 9-1 last weekend but knew from the outset that this game would be a sterner test. The first half boasted a wealth of chances for each side with Gareth Peet clipping the crossbar for Colls early on and Jordan Cover seeing a looping header go just over.
Morgan Bacon, playing just his second game for the Collieries, produced some good saves and the two sides headed in at the break with honours even.
Kidsgrove raced out of the traps in the second half however and just 4 minutes after the restart they were ahead. Danger man Lee Williams capitalised on a defensive error to race through on goal and chip the ball over the onrushing Bacon to put his team in the lead.
After the goal, Kidsgrove sat back and defended resolutely then made a counter attack count, or so it was adjudged. They won the ball in their own half and broke down the right wing with Jordan Cole directing a header goalbound from a floating cross into the box. It looked as though Bacon had managed to pull off a wonder save but, without any input from his linesman, the referee adjudged that the ball had crossed the line and sent the Athletic players into delirium. Angry at the referee’s judgement, Colls manager Michael Clegg protested and was sent off by referee for doing so.
Despite being 2-0 down, the Collieries players didn’t lose spirit and continued to press forward and create chances to get themselves back in the game. In doing so, the team became susceptible to another counter attack and goal scorer Williams paraded into the box only to be brought down by Dave Sherlock and a penalty awarded to Kidsgrove. Captain Malbon stepped up to take the penalty but goalkeeper Bacon dived to his left and magnificently kept the ball out and kept Colls in the game.
As the game drew to a close, Kidsgrove players ran down the clock and went down at any opportunity to receive treatment with some in particularly unhappy with Jordan Cover’s aerial challenge. The Colls pressured constantly from the penalty miss until the full time whistle but unfortunately they could only manage the one consolation goal. In the 93rd minute, Luke Giverin danced through the Athletic defence and slotted home but it was to be Kidsgrove who headed home having progressed through to the next round of the FA Cup. Next up for Colls is a trip to Clitheroe in the league on Tuesday night. We hope to see you there! Atherton Collieries: Mason Bacon, Dave Sherlock, Gareth Peet, Danny Lambert, Danny Lafferty (C), Ian Rowlands, Ben Hardcastle, Josh Peet, Jordan Cover, Ben Conway, Glenn Matthews - Substitutes: Matt Grimshaw, Conor Gaul, James Sigsworth, Luke Giverin, Adam Farrell
Man of the Match - Glenn Matthews Attendance: 161
Match report: Ben Olawumi