Top of the table and evenly matched but Workington snatched the points with a late goal and the Lilywhites were further hit in the closing moments when David Kuba Kuba was stretchered from the field with a serious looking injury after an accidental collision.
It was a frustrating and inevitably disappointing afternoon for David Fish’s men at a wet and windy Seel Park on Saturday watched by another brilliant almost 600 crowd.
Clear chances were at a premium at both ends as defences were pretty much in charge throughout what was a lively, highly competitive but somewhat leniently refereed clash between two clearly very decent sides both playing at 100% in the passion and determination stakes, though technical play often suffered as a result.
Workington could be accused of gamesmanship as they hounded the referee at almost every decision that didn’t go in their favour. However, despite their attempts to referee the game themselves they were organised and highly competent opponents for a Mossley side who’s form didn’t quite reach the heights of recent away performances.
Jack Banister returned to the starting line up after recovering from injury while Devon Matthews got the nod ahead of Paul Riley in the only changes from the side that won at Hyde the previous Saturday.
It was Banister who had the game’s first shot on target which was comfortably saved by Atkinson while at the other end a couple of Workington pot-shots flew narrowly wide.
Efforts missing the target were a first half trend that was almost broken on 33 minutes when a clever Mossley move ended with Harry Pratt setting up Jordan Butterworth who’s shot unluckily came back off a post before being cleared to safety.
Jordan Hadlow was called into action to deny Rigg’s effort and to keep the scores level at the break as chances were missed at both ends.
The second half followed a similar pattern as chances and half chances were inevitably off target.
Mossley worked hard to find a way to win the game as Mason Fawns moved to a central attacking midfield role after Kuba Kuba had replaced skipper Andy Keogh.
However, with less than ten minutes remaining Hadlow made a great save to deny Brad Carroll but the ball fell kindly for substitute Ruben Jerome who knocked the ball home from close range for what proved to be the winner.
Mossley were then hit by the injury to Kuba Kuba who collided with a Workington defender at full pace and was sadly stretchered from the field leading to seven minutes stoppage time being announced.
Mossley did everything they could to restore parity I the added time but couldn’t find a way through a solid visiting defence though the last minute should have brought an equaliser.
Mossley won a very late corner. Fawns cross was flicked goalward and Jack Grundy attempted to stab the ball home but unfortunately got no real purchase on the ball and his effort only found the gloves of Atkinson. The chance was gone and so sadly was the game. Meanwhile, Marine replaced the now second placed Lilywhites at the top of the table after their late 1-0 win at Market Drayton while Workington sit third.
Mossley will now look to find an instant response in next Saturday’s ‘free hit’ at Premier Division Whitby Town in the Buildbase FA Trophy.
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