Mossley 0 - 4 Curzon Ashton

I don't know about you but even though August isn't yet a footnote in the annals of history, I think it may already be time to write off Mossley's title chances for this season. And possibly our play-off hopes too.

I'm not going to go into any great detail about the mechanics of the match, primarily because I wasn't there. I had the option of attending the game or an early evening out with friends; it had to be one or the other. In times gone past I almost certainly would have opted for the football but in these days of financial austerity I don't want to use what painfully little disposable income I have on paying to watch something akin to a slow motion car crash, which is what Mossley's last home match was and what their latest one threatened to be. As the evening with friends had the promise of some enjoyment it was that I opted for as the 'e' word is something that hasn't been synonymous with the Lilywhites for a while now. Unless of course you're a supporter of the opposition. And lo and behold if it wasn't the visiting Curzon fans who got the most bang for their buck in the latest instalment of the Lilywhites 2011/12 relegation push. (Before anyone gets on their high horse, of course I'm being facetious when I say relegation push. For the time being at least anyway)

Curzon's 16 man squad contained 11 players who have worn the Lilywhites shirt, many of whom as recently as last season. The departure of these players to our near neighbours in the summer brought numerous jilted lover-esque cries from some supporters of "they weren't very good anyway" and that their replacements were so much better. It wasn't for as simple a reason as that they wanted to play for a manager who they'd enjoyed playing under before or that they wanted a change of scenery. Oh no, they were "mercenaries." Which begs the question as to whether the supporters who believe this think their replacements didn't have to leave a club to join us; that we're the only club who source our players from a pool of Corinthian spirited idealists. Anyhoo, the fixture meant it was an early chance to put those claims to the test: were the ex-Lilywhites rubbish and the new Lilywhites a lot better? A glimpse at the score line answers that question.

While I didn't watch the game in the flesh I did manage to watch it via Twitter for an hour via the various tweetings from the neutrals and not-so-neutrals in attendance and none of it made for happy reading. In the hour before kick-off I began to get this weird feeling that Mossley would upset the apple cart but when @aaronflan posted the team line-ups prior to the start of the match it disappeared. A whippet-like centre forward in the shape of Kristian Dennis up against the far from whippet-like central defensive pairing Mossley were starting with was only going to lead to one thing if the former was up for the match and sure enough, at four minutes past three the first of a succession of tweets popped up on my time line to say that Dennis had put Curzon a goal ahead having beaten his marker for speed. Eight minutes later news of his second strike of the afternoon came through along with some far from glowing appraisals of Mossley's performance.

Eventually it came time to head off to my preferred destination of the day and while stood at the bus stop I heard a cheer roll down from the hill which Seel Park sits atop of. In a rare outbreak of optimism I headed to Twitter on my phone to see if Mossley had embarked on a comeback. Nope. The noise I'd heard had been to greet Kristian Dennis's hat-trick. Seven minutes (and still no bus) later there was another eruption. That late on in the game it's unlikely a Mossley goal would have elicited such a reaction and sure enough it had heralded Curzon's fourth, scored by another ex-Lilywhite Michael Fish.

The 4-0 result (a second successive defeat at home by the same scoreline) meant that Curzon moved to the top of the table on goal difference and Mossley slipped, or rather fell with a bump, to the bottom of the Evo-Stik First Division North by virtue of having fewer points than everybody else. And so after six games of the new campaign the Lilywhites sit 21 places and 16 points below their Bank Holiday opponents who, lest we forget, comprise of players who aren't good enough for us according to some. Maybe it's just me but at the moment I'm not getting any sense of progress being made, especially as we look like heading into a risky FA Cup fixture against an unbeaten side from a lower division with only one centre forward at the club. Lengthy paragraphs about these issues though are for another, rainy day.

As for me I did have an enjoyable evening, not that any of you are asking. I ended up seeing the new Conan the Barbarian film and while it's not the greatest film ever made there are far worse ways of spending 90 minutes, naming no examples. There was plenty of killing in it too so I did eventually end up seeing one massacre on the day and paid less than £8 for the privilege too.