Profitable week for Blues on the road

Clitheroe celebrate Kurt Willoughby's goal at Goole'''Picture: Peter Ryan
Clitheroe celebrate Kurt Willoughby's goal at Goole'''Picture: Peter Ryan
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Clitheroe leapt up the Evo-Stik First Division North table with two away wins over the week.

On Saturday, the Blues were good value for a 2-1 win at Goole AFC, and then on Tuesday night, turned on the style in a 4-1 victory at Skelmersdale United.

On Tuesday, the Blues had to come from behind, but were comprehensive winners.

They conceded a soft penalty after six minutes, Richard Brodie sending Chris Thompson the wrong way from the spot.

Simon Haworth’s side were level within six minutes.

Kurt Willoughby had an effort blocked, before, moments later, Alex Newby – back at the club on loan from Witton – had an effort fumbled by the home keeper, and Ollie Crankshaw smashed the loose ball in.

And it was 2-1 on 20 minutes as Willoughby, on the edhe of the area, connected with a superb volley from a defensive header, which the keeper got his hands to, but the ball squirmed in.

The Blues continued to press, and Crankshaw weaved past several defenders before playing in Newby, who drilled a shot across goal.

Brad Carroll went close with an effort from distance before it was 3- 1 seven minutes from half-time, as Ryan Ellison picked up a deep cross, turned and skipped past a defender and curled the ball into the top corner.

Just after the interval, the hosts thought they had pulled one back, but the effort was chalked off for off-side, and Clitheroe put the result beyond doubt on 54 minutes when Willoughby crashed the ball into the top corner, giving the keeper no chance.

Charlie Russell tried his luck from 30 yards, that flew over the angle, before Newby worked the ball to Crankshaw, who slammed the ball towards the corner, but the keeper made a great save.

All told, it was a convincing win, on the back of another good display at Goole.

Crankshaw had a great shot curl just beyond the far post, and went close again as he latched onto a lobbed pass from Russell, and as he headed the ball over the keeper, a defender got back to clear.

The pressure was building and Clitheroe had a flurry of chances on 40 minutes, as Newby, Russell and Crankshaw each had shots saved in quick succession.

A goal had been coming, and after some great one-touch football, Crankshaw skipped down the left and laid the ball across to Newby, who comfortably obliged.

In the second half. Robbie Bromley narrowly side footed wide, before, on 54 minutes, Willoughby doubled the lead.

A defensive blunder let him in, and after running half the length of the pitch, he muscled his way through the opposition and thumped the ball home left footed.

On 68 minutes, a deep Goole free kick from the left was glanced unchallenged into the right side of the goal by Alex Varley.

Half chances fell Goole’s way, but the Blues saw the game out.

Clitheroe host Colwyn Bay on Saturday, and Bamber Bridge are the visitors on Tuesday night.