Dukinfield Town 3 - 3 Mossley

Well this was a surprise. And I don't just mean the fact that the blog has been updated after nearly a month of inactivity.

Until 10:30 yesterday morning I, along with many other people, was under the impression that Mossley's pre-season campaign would get under way on Wednesday night against Bury. However a short message posted on the forum on Friday evening stated that the Lilywhites would in fact be beginning their preparations for the 09/10 season at Dukinfield Town in a little over 18 hours time.

Unlike those lucky supporters who got at least 12 hours more notice than I did about the match, I had to cram my umm-ing and ahh-ing about whether to the attend the game into a very short period of time. After a couple of hours of definitely not going, it was at the last possible minute that I decided "what the hell!" and picked up my camera and headed off to Town's home ground at Blocksages.

Forty five minutes, and one ultra depressing bus ride round Brushes estate, later I was basking in the summer sun over Dukinfield with the handful of other Mossley supporters who had holes in their Saturday schedules.

The Lilywhites (wearing a black t-shirt and orange bib combo) lined up with the only eleven players at manager Chris Wilcock's disposal. From last season's side there was Ben Richardson, Nick Boothby, Reece Kelly, Danny Egan and Kieran Fletcher while new signing Peter Collinge was in goal. I've no idea who the other five were though but on this performance there didn't appear to be a clunker amongst them, which is unusual for any match involving a significant number of trialists.

By the time the match was due to start at 3:00pm the score was already one apiece. For reasons that will be lost in time like Roy Batty's tears in the rain in Blade Runner, the match started fifteen minutes early and Kelly's fifth minute penalty was cancelled out by a spot kick at the other end of the pitch three minutes later.

The home side probably shaded the rest of the half which wasn't really surprising as a) their players didn't have to pace themselves for ninety minutes due to the large number of substitutes they had to call on and b) unlike Mossley they were fielding a familiar looking line-up.

The second half began like the first with a quick two goal burst. Dukinfield went ahead for the first time in the match with a firm header to end a good move before Egan tied the scores by lobbing Collinge's long punt down field over the Town keeper.

A second penalty, this time scored by Egan, edged Mossley in front again but the lead didn't last long - a well taken volley that Collinge had little chance of stopping completing the scoring sequence.

As cobweb dusters go this game wasn't a bad one. It wasn't a great one but then you don't expect that for the first match back after the summer break. Pre-season friendlies after all aren't supposed to live long in the memory - they're the football equivalent of fast food. Or is that five-a-side matches?

Anyway, the arrival of the Shakers on Wednesday "should" mean we see a better game and hopefully, as there's been a bit more notice of this fixture, the support will outnumber the playing squad greatly rather than just!