On Saturday we make a speedy return to Prescot Cable’s Volair park as we play tenants Skelmersdale United. Colls now sit 4 points clear at the top of the table with just 3 games left of the season.
Last season, our league clash away to Skem was memorable for the wrong reasons. The game quickly turned sour as Skem skipper Liam Hollett and Neil Chappell making a return to the Colls were both red carded for a coming together which despite numerous viewings we are unable to clearly describe exactly what happened. Certainly no one in the ground could recall two players receiving straight red cards for the same challenge. Colls were soon down 9 men as Darrhyl Mason managed to talk himself into a second yellow card in the first half, in what was his last appearance for the club. Gamely Colls stood firm to keep the game scoreless as our fortunes started to turn in the league.
The Blueboys visited Atherton in September and despite scoring early on through Paul Ennis, Colls ran out 9-1 winners, Jordan Cover’s hat-trick being eclipsed by Ben Hardcastle’s quadruple. Skem ‘keeper Terry Smith received a harsh red card in the second half that was later rescinded.
In contrast to the Colls, Skem sit at the bottom of the league and with only one team now being relegated following Colwyn Bay’s move to the Welsh league, they will be desperate to close the gap on Kendal Town above them. Skem are in a good run of form, a recent 1-0 loss at Colne saw manager Paul McNally praise the club for coming together and growing as a team, working hard for each other. The squad contains two former Colls men, Liam Wood who wore our colours in our North West Counties championship season and Henoc Mukendi who fans will remember from that FA Vase game. A local lad who is often seen down the Skuna!
For the Colls, Greg Hartley narrowly missed the win over Clitheroe and could be fit to return in goal. Chris Cheetham has proved to be an able deputy if not. Oliver Robert is also knocking on the door of a return. Both boosting manager Micheal Clegg’s options with another big game to come on Bank Holiday Monday at the Skuna as Integro Cup winners Trafford FC are the visitors for our final home league game of the season.