Saturday 17th February 2024 – Northern Premier League

Macclesfield 5-3 Ilkeston Town


Robbie Savage was elated after his teams comeback win against Ilkeston but it could have been different had the Robins not been reduced to ten players when leading 3-2. Macclesfield finally pressed home their player advantage in the final five minutes after a valiant effort to keep them out.

The match started at a frantic pace. A Lindon Meikle effort hit the post before Macclesfield swept down the other end and had the ball in the net but chalked off for offside. Then on 5 minutes they did score through Tunde Owolabi who burst down the left side before firing past Matt Yates. Two minutes later ilkeston were level through Tom Cursons stabbing home following a corner. Macclesfield then found the net again but this time it was disallowed for a foul in the build up. Ilkeston went up the other end and Jamie Walker was inches wide from an acute angle with keeper Dylan Berry stranded. All of that happened in a very lively opening 10 minutes. On 19 minutes Ilkeston were ahead through Jonathan Wafula’s perfectly placed header from Declan Eratt-Thompsons cross. Just before half time John Rooney levelled for Macclesfield with a superb drilled shot into the far corner of the net.

Macclesfield started the second half strongly but it was Ilkeston who regained the lead with a stunning free kick from some 35 yards out by Tom Marshall to the delight of the drenched Ilkeston fans behind that goal. Two minutes later though Jamie Walker received a second yellow and was dismissed. There then followed an all out assault on the ilkeston goal and on the hour Matt Yates made an amazing double save first from Lewis Fensomes header then from Owolabis follow up. On 70 minutes Owolabi was close again when his effort rattled the Ilkeston post and then the same player saw another attempt cleared off the line as Macclesfield turned up the heat. The equaliser finally came when Sam Heathcote was brought down by Luke Cox and Rooney converted the penalty on 75 minutes.  Macclesfield went ahead on 85 minutes through Owolabi before Rooney completed his hat-trick wrapping up for game for the Silkmen on 88 minutes.

Written by – John Attewell