Clitheroe 5 - 0 Mossley

I have to be truthful and say that I wasn't expecting Mossley to pick up a win at Clitheroe's Shawbridge ground. And to continue in this vein of honesty I’ve got to confess that I wasn't even expecting a draw either. That leaves only one option and yes, I'm afraid to say it but I was expecting us to lose. In my defence though I didn’t suspect we’d lose quite as badly as we appear to have done.

I appreciate that the above may well look like an exercise in being clever with the benefit of hindsight so I should probably try and describe the thought process which led me to such a conclusion. Unfortunately that’s not going to be easy because it would mean doing something I said I wouldn’t for a month or two. Allow me to explain.

While there were positive aspects about Mossley's performance on Saturday, there were a number of worries too and it’s these hmm's I mentioned in the Bamber Bridge report (or rather the hmm’s I made a point of not mentioning) that I thought a good Clitheroe side would be able to exploit. Of course, with not being at the game I have no idea at all if it was these concerns which ultimately led to the considerable pasting we received (or even if some new ‘hmm’s’ have cropped up) but the result is still the same: a heavy and somewhat embarrassing defeat.

All the grim details of Mossley’s night to forget are on Mossleyweb if you want to know precisely what happened.

The official report is in itself a cause for some alarm. Having done them for the previous three seasons I know that the recollection of events they contain will always tend to be a little rosier than yours, especially after a pretty dismal result and performance. Bad luck will have always played a part, along with poor officiating, and it will never be made to seem as bad as it may have appeared; it’s the literary equivalent of smearing of Vaseline on a camera lens to beautify something with a soft-focus. And if that's still the case this year you've got to wonder how bad things actually were when it contains comments such as:

Instead of rolling up their sleeves and showing the fighting spirit that had carried them through the latter half of last season ... they instead showed their collective bellies, rolled over and died

this result and the manner in which it came, with the talent available in the current squad, is quite simply unacceptable

I got slated and labelled not a true supporter when I classed a non-performance in a 4-1 defeat as 'bobbins' last year so goodness knows how uppity the same people are going to get this time round having read that.

Even though we’re just four days into the new season and already six points and sixteen goals behind the team at the top, there’s no point in panicking yet. It’s still a new side and a new management team so it’s going to take a bit more than 180 minutes of competitive football for them to find their feet.

Hopefully not that much more though!