The Clarets and Macc Lads get mired in the mud bath
By Andy Ashworth
Updated Sunday, 27th February 2011
Burnley and Macclesfield played out a 0-0 draw on a surface reminiscent of half a century ago, or perhaps a pre-'Desso' Turf Moor.
I wish I could say that the match started at a frenetic pace with fast flowing football, but unfortunately the pitch deteriorated at an alarming rate following heavy overnight rain. The quality of play suffered as a result and it became a scrappy battle in the middle of the park. That's not to say it was a match devoid of chances as it was anything but.
The first fell to Jackson as he ran on to a through ball and went one on one with the Macclesfield keeper. He drew him out and rounded him but saw has goal bound effort cleared off the line. The visitors went up the other end with a chance of their own but Woodhead passed his first test with a smart save low to his right. He followed this up with another close range block from a header.
We had the ball in the back of the net after about half an hour as Jackson slipped the ball past the keeper and in off the post, but it was ruled out through a marginal offside decision. There were also opportunities for Steven Hewitt, who shot weakly at the keeper, and Lazaar, who saw a far post header hit the side netting after good work on the right by Ross Wilson. Town also forced a melee in our box, but the mass off flailing limbs prevented any effort on Woodhead's goal.
The 2nd half started with some early chances for Hewitt and Archie Love but both were easily taken by the Macclesfield keeper. The sticky pudding pitch caused Tom Anderson a bit of a problem at the back and he was forced to employ tactics more suited to rugby, garnishing him with a yellow card. He nearly saw his time in the match ended when the ref then took exception to what looked like a perfectly good challenge and gave him a loud final warning.
On the hour mark we again had the ball in the back of the net and this time it was Lazaar with a lovely curling effort. The result was the same as previously though as he was frustratingly offside despite looking across the line.
Pash decided to change the system bringing on Shay McCartan for Love and moving to a 4-4-2 formation giving us some genuine pace up front. We pressed but Macc Town broke away and we were grateful to Woodhead for a good double save.
We made more changes with Lazaar leaving the field to be replaced by Adam Evans and James Taylor finally making his first appearance of the season following an injury nightmare.
We had a couple more chances as McCartan forced a save when clean through and Jackson headed over from a last minute free kick but time ran out for us and we had to settle for a point.
Team:- Ben Woodhead, Aryn Williams, Dean Overson, Tom Anderson, Alex Coleman, Archie Love (Shay McCartan), Steven Hewitt, Dave Lynch, Mehdi Lazaar (Adam Evans), Ross Wilson (James Taylor), Joe Jackson.
Subs not used:- Tommy Taylor, Curtis Woods