Mossley 3 - 0 Rossendale United

Another short and 'no different from the official report' report this week as I'm still in no fit state to sit in front of the computer for hours on end doing two reports. The weather the match was played in hardly helped things and my back is currently stiffer than... you know, I'm not even up to thinking of something halfway amusing to finish that similie with.

There is a photo slideshow at the end of the post though and while it's no substitute for the video footage the stills are taken from, it will hopefully give you some idea of the goals, conditions, etc.

To have made your visit to Mossley80 a worthwhile one though, I suggest reading the post below this one if you haven't already. It has a few things that will pass the time better than this report did.

The Lilywhites returned to winning ways in their league campaign and fourth spot in the table with a relatively comfortable win over Rossendale United at a rain swept Seel Park.

The early stages of the game were a fraught and cagey affair as both teams attempted to adjust to the appalling conditions, but it was the home side that settled first and the lead they took in the 18th minute was one they never once looked like relinquishing.

That opening goal was the result of a fine team effort which involved Lee Blackshaw threading the ball through a cluster of opponents to find Michael Fish wide on the left. His first time cross found Danny Self arriving at the back post and the player who'd only been on the pitch for a matter of minutes as a replacement for the injured Leon Henry, diverted the ball through the legs of Hall to register his first goal in a Mossley shirt.

Fish, Dignan, Graham Kay and even Dale's Kevin Brown all went close to doubling Mossley's advantage before a second goal finally arrived five minutes before the interval. It was almost identical to the first too. This time though it was Fish himself who was the beneficiary of a perfectly weighted cross from the left wing; Mossley's leading scorer stooping to head home Danny Digan's delivery for his fifteenth goal of the season.

With Mossley appearing to be happy with their two goal lead and Rossendale looking more fired up than they had been for the first forty five minutes, the second half turned out to be a little less one sided.

The increase in possession the visitors enjoyed also translated into them spending more time than they had previously done around the Mossley penalty area. But thanks to some solid defending from a Lilywhites back line looking to post their first clean sheet in all competitions since the beginning of September, the side from Rawtenstall were confined to shooting wildly from distance.

It wasn't until the 80th minute that they finally called Andy Robertson into making a telling save, Stag's captain Phil Eastwood forcing the Mossley keeper to tip his powerful shot over the cross bar. The resultant corner also saw Robertson called into action, this time to acrobatically turn a 20 yard effort from James Heywood around the post.

In throwing men forward in search of a way back into the the game, Rossendale were leaving themselves open to a counter attack and it was an invitation the home side gratefully accepted in the 83rd minute.

Picking up possession after a visitor's set-piece had petered out, Anthony Robinson sent Danny Self charging down the right wing. After running over half the length of the pitch the former FC United winger played the ball into the path of fellow substitute Danny Egan who in turn tapped it past Hall for the goal that sealed the victory.