Half of Salford City's first team were missing from the team sheet yesterday as long serving players like popular goalkeeper Andy Robertson and fans' player of the year, Matty Cross, plus midfield maestro Mattie Burke, have decided to move away from Moor Lane. Fans are still awaiting the official fate of Jack Redshaw and Adam Morning.
Given the player crisis, Salford City did well to pull a half time two goal deficit back, thanks to a last minute pile driver from Scott Metcalfe, fast becoming the Ammies' star scorer.
Clitheroe had taken the lead, against the run of play, after only ten minutes, a through ball slicing open Salford's defence. The hill team doubled the lead before half time following a defensive mix up amongst the strangers on the back line. As in recent weeks, Salford players had left themselves a mountain to climb. The interval statistics said it all – Clitheroe: three attacks, two goals. Salford: the majority of possession, no goals.
The second half was only seconds old when Rhodri Giggs' dressing room hair dryer treatment obviously had an affect, Scott Metcalfe cutting in from the left and hammering a shot into the net, to pull a goal back.
From then on, Salford City piled on the pressure, with Rhodri Giggs himself hitting the bar from a free kick. But it all looked too little too late, until Scott Metcalfe grabbed his second in the dying seconds, driving in a shot from the left as chaos engulfed the Clitheroe defence. It was no less than Salford City deserved, after a battling performance that showed, no matter who pulls on the tangerine shirt, there is a positive spirit running through this team.
Replay Tuesday night up in the hills of Clitheroe to see who marches on in the non-League FA Cup…
Meanwhile, this Friday sees an experimental home league fixture against Curzon Ashton at Moor Lane…
"The club have been looking at ways of increasing attendances at Moor Lane, and generating more interest within the city, and this is one option" said a statement on the club's website "If it's successful we may ask for future games to be rescheduled as well."
Friday 14th October 7:45pm kick off Salford City v Curzon Ashton £7 adults £3 kids
Further news at www.salfordcityfc.co.uk
Photos by Andrew Goudie