Mossley powered back strongly to take maximum points from play off hopefuls Clitheroe to lift the Lilywhites to a more respectable 16th place in the table following what was an important 2-1 victory at Seel Park on Saturday.
Mossley were again without the injured Andy Watson while Callum Scullion was an illness absentee. Mo Ali switched to central defence with much success while Dan Johnson switched to left back. Up front Liam Ellis was preferred to on loan Sam Livesey as Mitch Bryant’s partner while Jason Hill was recalled to the starting line up after missing recent games.
Clitheroe were brighter out of the blocks and for 20 minutes looked pretty impressive as passed and moved the ball around the pitch with some skill.
Louis Myers went close for the visitors early on and it was quickly clear that the Lilywhites defence had it’s work cut out.
At the other end James Blair headed wide when well placed after a slick Mossley raid but it was the visitors who took the lead on 16 minutes. A slick move down Mossley’s right saw space open for Charlie Russell to slot the ball past the stranded Will Jones.
The goal seemed to awaken something in the Mossley players and the Lilywhites gradually began to take the upper hand.
Suddenly Clitheroe’s neat play was being broken up higher up the pitch and Mossley were able to apply some pressure of their own. A couple of half chances went by before the Lilywhites equalised on 34 minutes. Liam Ellis lost possession on the edge of the Clitheroe box but the young Mossley striker chased back to recover the ball from the floundering Danny Brady. He set Tom Pratt free down the right and Pratt planted a firm cross to the far post which completely outfoxed Clitheroe keeper Chris Thompson and flew into the roof of the net.
Three minutes later the Lilywhites turned the game on it’s head. Heavy pressure saw Mossley win a right wing corner. Pratt whipped in from the flag kick and Jason Hill’s touch saw Tom Dean power in to slam home from six yards.
Mossley went on to dominate the game playing some good football. Pratt saw his free kick well saved.
The second half saw more of the same from the Lilywhites as they continued to dominate the contest. There were several scrambles in and around the Clitheroe box as the visitors struggled to clear their lines effectively.
Mossley thought they had the killer goal with twenty minutes remaining as Mitch Bryant swept home Pratt’s low right wing cross but the effort was disallowed for a marginal off-side.
The let off did little to spark Clitheroe back to life though Will Jones was forced to save from Ian Rowlands’ header while Dimitri Tuanzebe fired well over from a good position, but, the Lilywhites were able to see the game out with some comfort for what was an important second successive victory for the new look side.