Clitheroe’s play-off hopes increase

Chris Mason
Chris Mason

BLUES boss Paul Moore has insisted that points are more important than performances at the business end of the campaign.

Fortunately for Moore though, his Clitheroe side are marrying the two components in their bid to cement a top five finish in the First Division North table.

Goals from Chris Mason and Daley Woods were enough to secure a 2-1 victory over play-off rivals Cammell Laird at Shawbridge over the weekend, though with Curzon Ashton beating Salford City 3-1 on home soil on Monday evening the Blues slipped to fourth.

“I thought we were outstanding in the first half,” said Moore. “It was a fantastic performance. It was a slick display and we passed the ball around well. We forced them to go with the long ball, we were very good value for our 2-0 lead and it could’ve been more.

“Credit to Cammell Laird though because they probably deserved a draw for their efforts in the second half. But we’d done the damage before the break, we hurt them, so we consequently came out on top. At this stage points are more important than performances because they give you the momentum.”

Mossley, Trafford, New Mills and Cammell Laird can all still leapfrog Clitheroe in the hierarchy with games in hand, but Moore prefers to have the games and points in the bag, alluding to fatigue as a potential obstacle for their rivals.

“We are on a good run with just one defeat in eight and we’ve kept four clean sheets over that period so it’s looking healthy,” Moore said. “It’s looking good but the job isn’t done yet. We’ve got to win four of our remaining games, there’s still a lot of hard work to do.

“The lads have performed magnificently. The advantage now is that there’s a number of teams who are playing catch up so fatigue may play a part. Some teams have a massive congestion of fixtures. We’ve got the games and points in, we are in a good position, so we just need to keep going.”

The Blues travel to Shawe View on Saturday where a tough encounter with sixth place Trafford awaits. However, Moore is backing his side to get something from the fixture to keep the promotion push alive.

“The lads are getting results at the key point of the season,” he said. “We’ve managed to get the points when we can and at this moment in time it’s looking better. What’s important is that the teams we are beating are the teams that are in and around us in the table.

“We’ve got another big game at the weekend versus Trafford. We have to make sure that we avoid defeat. If we win then fantastic, and I think that’s something we can achieve. They’ve slipped off the pace slightly but they play good football. We know it will be a tough game against a side who like to get the ball down and play but we’ll look to hit them with our pace.”