Buoyed by the news before kick off that top scorer and all round total Salford hero, Steve Foster, seems to have rejected a move to promotion hunting, wallet opening, glory buying Chorley, Ammies supporters unfurled the largest flag in the Evo-Stik League.
The majestic tangerine and black flag billowed in the wind, filling the vast empty, soulless terracing at Ashton and bringing a flavour of the Nou Camp to East Manc.
While the tangerine flag fluttered, the referee had his own idea of adding atmosphere, waving yellow cards like confetti at Salford City's players and sending off player manager, Rhodri Giggs in the hot tempered final moments when Salford were denied a penalty for clear cut hand ball.
But surely it was Ashton who should have finished with ten men. Curzon's no 8, Chris Curley, already on a yellow for a bad foul in the first half that saw Jamie Rother carried off, was shown staggering leniency when he scythed down yet more Salford players throughout a nasty game that saw the Ammies having to replace two more injured players. The usual derby chant went up from Salford supporters… `Same old Curzon, always cheating'.
As a football match this was hardly a showcase, with the only meaningful action a shot by Salford's Steve Foster after 15 minutes that hit the post, four world class saves by Andy Robertson that kept the Ammies on track for a point and, finally, one lapse of concentration in the Salford defence after 51 minutes that allowed Ashton their goal.
That action aside, once Salford were forced to replace injured players with subs who were not fully match fit, it was always an uphill struggle. Add this to a bad referee and a horrid Ashton team that would be more at home in a cage fighting contest, and Salford were unlucky not to bring home at least a point.
From Ashton, only ex Ammies left back, Alex Mortimer, rose above the hostility between the sides, gracefully clapping Salford supporters at the final whistle. While Alex reluctantly left Salford recently, at least Steve Foster is staying. And that is good news!!!
Photos by Andrew Goudie